Hinostroza signs with Blackhawks

Irish hockey must replace its top two scorers next season. Sophomore center Vince Hinostroza has chosen to forego his final two years of eligibility and sign with the Chicago Blackhawks, ESPNChicago.com reports. Defenseman Robbie Russo is lost to graduation.

Jeff Jackson will have to replace his top two scorers next season.

Center Vince Hinostroza will skip his final two seasons of eligibility to sign a three-year entry level contract with the Chicago Blackhawks, ESPNChicago.com reports. Chicago selected Hinostroza in the sixth round of the 2012 NHL Draft.

Hinostroza led Notre Dame with 44 points on 11 goals and 33 assists in 42 games this season. He managed a plus-5 rating and won 48.7 percent of his face offs.

Defenseman Robbie Russo also departs after exhausting his eligibility. He accounted for 41 points on 15 goals and 26 assists with a team high plus-13 rating. He also blocked 48 shots and was a key point man on the Irish power play.

Russo led all defensemen nationally with the 15 goals.

Hinostroza and Russo were both named first team All-Hockey East at a conference awards banquet earlier this week, marking the first time Notre Dame has had two players named first team all-conference since 1976-77.

Notre Dame finished 18-19-5 this season and fifth in Hockey East with a 10-7-5 record. Massachusetts-Lowell eliminated the Irish in the quarterfinal round of the playoffs.

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