CHICAGO — Academic excellence reigns supreme once more in the Key City. Three of the six honorees on the 2022 USHL All-Academic Team suited up for the Dubuque Fighting Saints during the 2021–22 season. The honorees include defensemen Max Burkholder and Austin Oravetz, along with goaltender Paxton Geisel.
Since the USHL All-Academic Team was instated after the 2016–17 season, 12 of the 34 players honored have been Dubuque Fighting Saints. The list includes Alex Steeves, Jacob Semik, Aidan Fulp, Mason McCormick, Ty Jackson, Riley Stuart, Stephen Halliday, Connor Kurth, Hobie Hedquist, along with Burkholder, Oravetz and Geisel. The incredible dedication of Saints academic coordinator JoAnne Gibson has made Dubuque the most elite academic powerhouse in the league.
“Our assistant coaches, together with JoAnne, work tirelessly to ensure we have a support system for all players taking classes, whether it’s in high school or in college,” said Fighting Saints GM and President of Hockey Ops Kalle Larsson. “Their efforts are the foundation of the academic excellence our players have been experiencing in recent years. Being able to manage hockey and academics the way Paxton, Austin and Max has done is impressive. We are proud of their selections to the All-Academic Team.”
Burkholder, committed to Colorado College, completed this past year online through Chaska High School in Chaska, Minnesota. He finished his second season as a member of the Dubuque Fighting Saints.
Geisel, committed to the University of Denver, completed his sterling academic year at The University of Texas at Austin High School, and is just coming off of being named a USHL All-Rookie selection.
Oravetz, while uncommitted, put his best foot forward at Pennsylvania Cyber Charter School in his first season in the USHL as a member of the Fighting Saints.
The USHL All-Academic Team has had two or more Fighting Saints players listed for five consecutive seasons.