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Penn State Hockey: Hults Named Big Ten and Defensive Player of the Year

by on May 11, 2020 12:30 PM

Penn State junior defenseman Cole Hults has been named both the 2019-20 Big Ten Player of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year. The conference announced the awards on Monday morning.

The now former Nittany Lion is the first Penn State player to be named the conference's Player of the Year and joins Trevor Hamilton as the only other Nittany Lion to win Defensive Player of the Year honors after Hamilton took home the award following the 2017-18 season.

Both players join Guy Gadowsky as major conference award winners, Gadowsky was named the 2014-15 Big Ten Coach of the Year. This season the award went to Minnesota head coach Bob Motzko.

Hults leaves Penn State after signing a two-year, entry-level contract with the Los Angeles Kings back in April. He was previously voted Team MVP and joined teammate Nate Sucese as one of the first All-Americans in program history.

While at Penn State, Hults tied the program's single-season record for points by a defenseman with 30 this past season, a figure good for first in the Big Ten by blueliners and 10th nationally among defensemen. Hults' eight goals this season mark a new career-high while tying the Penn State single-season record for goals by a defenseman as well as pacing the conference. His 22 assists also led the Big Ten for blueliners and tied a career-best.

Hults played in 111-consecutive contests and, with a +48 rating for his career, the junior ranks third all-time at Penn State. He is also the Nittany Lion career record holder for points and assists by a defenseman with 78 and 61, respectively, while his 17 goals place him second all-time for blueliners

Additionally, Hults is joined by forward Nate Sucese on the conference's first team while forward Evan Barratt found himself on the second-team. Forward Alex Limoges and goaltender Peyton Jones were named honorable mentions.

Ben Jones covers Penn State football and basketball for He's on Twitter as @Ben_Jones88.
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