scored the game-winning goal in the 2002 MAAC championship
game, sending Mercyhurst to the NCAA Tournament.
Statistics: Ranked fifth nationally and led Atlantic
Hockey in points per game by a defenseman (0.78). Tied for
third on the team with a +8 plus/minus rating. His 26 points
and 21 assists led league defensemen. Named best defenseman
in the conference.
He Does: Jump into the play. At 5-feet-11, 197 pounds,
Kemp is somewhat in the mold of Brian Rafalski, and he can
be just as much of an offensive force for his team. Kemp has
the freedom to become the Lakers’ fourth forward on
rushes, knowing that goaltender Andy Franck and his defensive
partner have his back if something goes awry.
Bigger Picture: Kemp got some nibbles from OHL teams,
but his heart was set on playing college hockey ever since
he watched uncle Jim Montgomery play for Maine from 1989-93.
Montgomery, who has bounced around the NHL for the last decade,
played last season in Russia. “He was my role model,”
Kemp said. As for winding up in Erie, Kemp’s story is
similar to many Atlantic Hockey players. Bigger programs wanted
him to play another year or two of juniors, but Mercyhurst
was willing to accept him right away.
Speak: “I don’t get caught (pinching)
too much. That’s just my game. And our team is so good
defensively that I don’t have to worry a lot if I do
get caught up-ice.”