Gophers’ Reilly Named to Team USA
MINNEAPOLIS (GopherSports.com) – Two-time First Team All-American and two-time Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year Mike Reilly will once again don the Red, White and Blue as one of the first 15 players announced for the 2015 U.S. Men’s National Team.
USA Hockey announced the initial roster on Tuesday with the team set to compete at the 2015 IIHF Men’s World Championhip May 1-17 in Ostrava and Prague, Czech Republic. Gopher Hockey All-American and current Columbus Blue Jackets head coach Todd Richards will serve in the same role for the U.S. squad.
Reilly has previously suited up for the U.S. twice in his career. The defenseman missed two games with the Gophers as a freshman to help Team USA to a gold medal at the 2013 IIHF World Junior Championship in Ufa, Russia (Gophers assistant coach Grant Potulny held the same role with the U.S. for the tournament) while Reilly also helped the U.S. to a third-place finish at the 2011 World Junior A Hockey Challenge in Langley, B.C. with fellow Gopher A.J. Michaelson.
Reilly became just the seventh Gopher in program history to earn multiple All-America honors last Friday with his second-straight First Team accolade. The Chanhassen, Minn., native played in all 39 games as a junior this season and set new career highs with 42 points and 36 assists to lead all NCAA defensemen in scoring. His 42 points are the most by a Minnesota defenseman since 2001-02 when Jordan Leopold notched 48 points in route to a national championship and the Hobey Baker Award while Reilly is the first Minnesota defenseman to lead the team in scoring since Mike Crowley in 1996-97. The defenseman led the Big Ten and ranked tied for eighth nationally in plus/minus this year at +25 while leading the nation in power-play assists (19) as part of Minnesota’s top-ranked power play. Furthermore, Reilly’s 21 power-play points were tied for third nationally.
In addition to his All-America accolade this season, Reilly was also named the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year and a First Team All-Big Ten selection for the second-straight year after helping Minnesota to its second-straight Big Ten regular-season championship and fourth-straight overall conference title. The blueliner was a finalist for the Hobey Baker Award and represented the Gophers on the Big Ten All-Tournament Team after helping Minnesota to the program’s first conference playoff title since 2007.