Ryan Flames’ first ACHA Division I Player of the Year honoree
Senior forward Quinn Ryan, who paced Liberty University's ACHA Division I men's hockey team in scoring for a third time in his five-year career and sparked the Flames to their first ACHA DI National Championship "Frozen Four" since 2008, became their first-ever ACHA DI Player of the Year, selected by the league's head coaches and announced by the league on Friday.
Ryan was chosen from four finalists that included Adrian College goalie Michael Barrett and Lindenwood defenseman Brendan Murphy and forward Vegard Faret.
"Ryan was recognized as our Offensive Player of the Year this year and we are really excited for him to be our first player to be named ACHA Player of the Year," Flames Head Coach Kirk Handy said, noting he was also selected to the ACHA DI National Championships All-Tournament Second Team along with senior defenseman Vitaliy Novytskyy. "It's a fantastic award for Quinn. He's worked hard every year that he's been here to improve his skillset and has gotten stronger each year and refined his game. He was the offensive engine on our team and to his credit, he's been dominant. We are working together to try to find opportunities for him to play professionally next year."
Ryan paced the Flames in scoring in each of the past three seasons. (Photo by KJ Jugar)
Ryan led Liberty (12-5, 10-4 ACHA) with 12 goals and 12 assists and had zero penalty minutes in 14 ACHA games, including the April 16-19 national championships near St. Louis. He helped the Flames ascend to No. 3 in the ACHA DI national rankings after posting a program-first victory over an NCAA Division I team — first-year Long Island (N.Y.) University in the Jan. 22 series opener at the LaHaye Ice Center.
In 2019-2020, Ryan played a prominent role in Liberty (33-4) reaching an all-time-high No. 2 national ranking and completing a two-game home sweep of 2021 National Champion Adrian College. He amassed 22 goals and 43 assists for 65 total points in 37 games (1.75 per game) that season, cut short by COVID-19. He also ranked first on the team in scoring with 58 points (25G, 33A) in 2018-2019, when he was selected to the United States Men's National University Team that played in the 2019 Winter World University Games in Russia.
Ryan also carried the torch for the Flames in scoring in 2017-18, when he netted 14 goals and distributed a career-high 35 assists. As a freshman in 2016-17, he landed on the All-ACHA DI Rookie Team after a breakout season with 18 goals, including a career-high five game-winners, and 27 assists. For his collegiate career, Ryan netted a total of 92 goals and 156 assists for 248 points over 159 games (1.56 ppg), ranking him third among Liberty's all-time scoring leaders.