Hamline’s Berenguer named top player in D-III

Hamline senior defenseman Chris Berenguer has been chosen the 2011 winner of the Sid Watson Award Award as the top Division III player.

Berenguer helped Hamline to a 17-7-5 record and both the regular season and tournament titles of the MIAC.

The second straight MIAC Player of the Year to win this award, Berenguer earned first team All-American honors for the third time this season.

“Chris Berenguer is the best player to ever put on the Hamline University sweater and he is without question one of the best to ever play in the MIAC,” Hamline coach Scott Bell said in a statement. “He scores as well as any defenseman in college hockey, to be sure – his 32 points rank him third nationally and his 13 goals are second nationally among defensemen – but more importantly, he scores the big goals. None of his scoring prowess takes away from his play as a defensive defenseman. He is a rock in front of the net, and lugs the puck up the ice consistently and steadily.

“Chris embodies the D-III spirit and philosophy. He is happily married to Nicole and has a beautiful daughter, Stella. His ability to balance hockey with academics and family has caught heartwarming conference and national press.”

Berenguer has already moved on in his career as he signed a contract with the Trenton Devils of the ECHL two weeks ago.

The runner-up for the Sid Watson Award was B.J. O’Brien, a senior goaltender from St. Norbert.