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College Hockey:
Army defenseman Rocha ‘humbled and honored’ with Senior CLASS Award

Three-time Atlantic Hockey academic all-star and Rhodes Scholar candidate Cheyne Rocha of Army has been selected as the 2012-13 winner of the Senior CLASS Award.

The award, chosen by a vote of Division I men’s coaches, media and fans, is given annually to the most outstanding senior. An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, the award “focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.”

“I am humbled and honored to accept the Senior CLASS Award,” said Rocha, a defenseman who will commission as a Second Lieutenant in the Engineer Branch of the U.S. Army following graduation, in a news release. “I have been blessed with great teammates, coaches and instructors during my time at West Point and this award is a result of their mentorship and support. I want to thank my family for their unwavering support and guidance. This was a great group of finalists and I would like to thank all of the fans, media and head coaches who voted for me during this process. I also want to thank the hard working people behind the Senior CLASS Award for their support of college athletics, especially those who succeed on and off the ice.”

Rocha posted the highest grade-point average among league defensemen as a junior and was named student-athlete of the year. He also spearheaded House of Blues, an awareness campaign for prostate cancer and now the preferred charity of Atlantic Hockey. Rocha is an active participant with the Special Olympics and Neighborhood Knights.

“This is a tremendous and well-deserved honor for Cheyne,” said Army coach Brian Riley in a statement. “His hard work on and off the ice has been an inspiration to many and it’s great to see him recognized nationally for his efforts. We would like to thank all of the fans, coaches and media members who voted for Cheyne and congratulate all of the other finalists. There are some great hockey players doing great things and we are grateful to the Senior CLASS folks for recognizing and rewarding these young men.”

Rocha played in all but two games this season. The two games he missed were to attend his Rhodes Scholarship interview. He finished the season with a goal and three assists.

“Cheyne has maintained the discipline and focus necessary to complete his studies at one of our country’s military academies, but he has also contributed to a hockey team and guided several community service initiatives as well, making him a terrific representative of this year’s outstanding group of hockey finalists,” added executive director for the Senior CLASS Award Erik Miner.


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