BC goalie Muse earns Walter Brown Award

Boston College senior goaltender John Muse is this year’s winner of the Walter Brown Award, presented annually to the best American-born college hockey player in New England.

Muse, who was the Eagles’ goaltender for their NCAA championships in 2008 and 2010, topped a slate of 15 semifinalists for the award, the nation’s oldest nationally-recognized college hockey honor.

The award was established in 1953 by the members of the 1933 Massachusetts Rangers, the first American team ever to win the World Championship tournament. Walter Brown coached the Rangers to the title in Prague, Czechoslovakia, that year as the team defeated Canada, 2-1, in overtime in the championship game.

Three other candidates from the group of 15 were named finalists in this year’s voting, including junior goalie Joe Cannata of Merrimack, senior forward Paul Thompson from New Hampshire and senior forward Broc Little of Yale.

Muse was a unanimous Hockey East first-team all-star selection, leading the circuit’s goaltenders in all statistical categories both in league and overall play. He allowed 40 goals in 23 league games for a sparkling 1.84 goals-against average. His 560 saves made for a .933 save percentage, and his record in league play was 18-4-1.

“This year’s field of semifinalists included four goaltenders and there were several others who had fine seasons, but did not make the cut,” selection committee chairman Tim Costello said in a statement. “That’s an indicator of the tremendous importance of a playing well in the goal, and it is hard to find a goaltender who has done the job better or more consistently, year-in and year-out, than John Muse.”

The 59th Walter Brown Award will be presented at the annual New England College Hockey Writers’ Dinner on April 13 in Saugus, Mass.