Jr. | D | Petaluma, Calif.
Key Statistics: Considering McKenzie had to play behind all-stars Tim Kirby and Scott Mathis, his point production has not been too shabby. As a freshman, McKenzie was the top-scoring blueliner in league play with 18 points in 27 games (he added one assist in non-conference action), making him a lock for the Atlantic Hockey all-rookie team. As a sophomore, McKenzie posted two goals and 16 assists. He had a plus/minus ranking of +8 as a rookie and +7 in his second season. McKenzie played two seasons with the Wenatchee Wild in the North American Hockey League, posting four goals and 28 points in 2008-09 and nine goals and 31 points the year after. He was named All-NAHL West Division in his final season and made the NAHL all-tournament team with seven assists in 10 playoff games.
What He Does: With Mathis and Kirby taking the lion’s share of minutes as the Falcons’ top defensive pairing the past two years, Air Force head coach Serratore says the league hasn’t seen McKenzie’s full potential. The California product is very smart, very athletic, and skates well. “He’s a guy that can run down his mistakes,” Serratore said. McKenzie has been paired with defensive-minded Dan Weisenhofer, giving him the safety net when he wants to move up on the offense.
The Bigger Picture: McKenzie was one of three Air Force players to attend an NHL team development camp, spending some summer time with the Capitals’ prospects. Serratore compares McKenzie to former Army defenseman Zach McKelvie, who has been playing with the Bruins’ minor leaguers.
Air Force coach Frank Serratore on McKenzie: “We’ve admired the way he has accepted and embraces the roles that we gave him. He could have made the argument many times that he should be playing more of a glamour role and getting more offensive minutes. He did his thing the best he could. We’re excited to see what he can become for us.”