April 24, 2009
Alec Richards, whose record-breaking 2008-09 season helped the Yale men's hockey team to its best-ever campaign, has been signed by the National Hockey League Chicago Blackhawks to a two-year, entry-level contract. He will join the squad next fall.
Richards, who owns the school's career save percentage (.923) and shutout (6) standards, moved to the top of the Yale record books by registering a 2.06 goals against average, a school-record four shutouts and a 19-5-1 mark in 2008-09. Two of those shutouts came in the ECAC Hockey Playoffs this winter, including a 5-0 win over Cornell in the tournament title contest at Albany, N.Y., on March 21.
The Bulldog netiminder also competed in the April 10 NCAA Frozen Four Skills Challenge at the Verizon Center in Washington, D.C. and helped the East defeat the West. Richards was third-team All-ECAC, second-team All-Ivy League and made the ECAC All-Tournament Team.
The senior from Robbinsdale, Minn., also sits second in career wins (39) and goals against average (2.68) and is third in all-time saves (2,348), while this season's goals against was second only to Ed Swift (1.75), who led the Blue to an 8-5 record in 1942-43. Richard's 19 wins this year were one shy of Alex Westlund's 20 in 1997-98.