Niagara University’s men’s hockey team is celebrating honors for several of its players, with four of them named Atlantic Hockey Student-Athlete of the Year for academic year 2011-2012. The players were honored for maintaining grade point averages of 4.0 or higher.
Among them is forward Dan Baco, who skated with the Buffalo Junior Sabres during the team’s Buffalo Lightning era. During the 2004-05 season, Baco appeared in 47 games for the Lightning, scoring 22 goals and 41 assists. He enrolled at Niagara beginning academic year 2008-09, following three seasons with the Lincoln Stars of the United States Hockey League.
Niagara had 16 players named to the Atlantic Hockey Association’s All-Academic Team. Besides Baco, ex-Jr. Sabre defenseman Tyler Matthews made this list. Matthews skated with the Jr. Sabres during the 2006-07 season, appearing in 37 games and scoring one goal and 11 assists. He spent a year in the North American Hockey League with the Marquette Rangers and the following year with the Drumheller Dragons of the Alberta Junior Hockey League before enrolling at Niagara in 2009. He is expected to return for his senior year this fall.