NAHL Alumni Update
November 5, 2015
It was another big week for several NAHL alumni, but none more so than former Amarillo Bulls forward Greg Gibson.
Gibson, a forward for Robert Morris University, has been selected as the Hockey Commissioners Association Player of the Month for October, as well as, the Atlantic Hockey Association Forward of the Month. Gibson played in the NAHL for the Bulls during the 2011-12 season. Gibson has gotten off to a fast start in 2015-16, tallying a point in each of Robert Morris' first six games and multiple points in five of the six games. He has a team-, and conference-leading, 13 points, which have come from six goals and seven assists. Those totals not only have Gibson sitting in the top-two amongst Atlantic Hockey skaters for the statistics, but they also have the Burlington, Ontario native ranking in the top-10 nationally as well. Gibson ranks tied for first in points, tied for third in goals, and tied for fourth in assists. His performance in the early going has Robert Morris off to a 3-1-2 start and 2-0-2 mark in Atlantic Hockey play. He recorded five goals, including his first career hat trick, in a 1-0-1 weekend at Niagara, leading to him being named the Atlantic Hockey Player of the Week. Then a week later, he notched another five-point weekend, all coming on assists, as Robert Morris went 1-1-0 at then-No. 10 Michigan. The Colonials' 4-0 win over Michigan on October 31st was Robert Morris' first win over a top-10 ranked team since December 2012.
Former NAHL and Janesville Jets goaltender Matt Jurusik, who is a freshman for the University of Wisconsin, was named as the Big 10’s #3 Star of the Week. Jurusik posted a .956 save percentage and 1.00 goals-against average to guide Wisconsin to a pair of wins over Arizona State. He turned aside 18 shots to earn his first collegiate victory on Friday and tallied 25 saves in a 2-1 win on Saturday, including 16 in the third period.
Former NAHL and Wichita Falls Wildcats forward Dennis Kravchenko was named as the Hockey East Forward of the Month for October. Kravchenko tied for the national lead in goals with seven markers in just six games played, totaling a team-leading 12 points. Seven of those points came in the third period, good for the national lead. His production has helped UMass to the best start in the program's Div. I history, going 4-1-1 with the sole loss to nationally- ranked Yale. He tallied four multi-point games, including two four-point outings and his first collegiate hat trick. He wrapped the month with a plus-three rating while winning 66 of 119 faceoffs. For his efforts, he was named Hockey East Player of the Week on October 19 and was named to the Capital City Classic All-Tournament Team. Kravchenko played for the Wildcats in the NAHL during the 2011-12 season.
Former NAHL and Minot Minotauros/Minnesota Magicians goalie Atte Tolvanen was named the WCHA Rookie of the Month and the WCHA Defensive Player of the Week. Tolvanen was a virtual brick wall in front of the Northern Michigan net during his first collegiate month, facing the second-most shots of any NCAA goaltender in October (258) and finishing with the second-most saves (243), while playing the second-most minutes (452:37). Among the 30 NCAA goalies who faced at least 150 shots last month, Tolvanen ranked fifth for save percentage (.942) and sixth for goals-against-average (1.99) – both tops among all national freshmen (again, minimum 150 shots faced) and all WCHA netminders. The native of Vihti, Finland was even better in four conference games, going 2-1-1 with a .966 save percentage (143-for-148) and 1.23 GAA. The two-time WCHA Rookie of the Week had a trio of 40-save performances, while he earned league Defensive Player of the Week honors after a career-best 46-stop effort in a scoreless tie against Bemidji State on Oct. 30 (part of an 80-save weekend). All told, Tolvanen backstopped Northern Michigan to a 3-2-3 record when he played (2-2-3 as a starter), while the Wildcats finished October in a tie for third in the WCHA standings with five league points (2-1-1). Tolvanen played the past two seasons in the NAHL, including last season in Minot and the 2013-14 season with the Minnesota Magicians.
Former NAHL and Topeka RoadRunners goalie Cal Petersen was named the Hockey East Defensive Player of the Week. The current Notre Dame goalie Petersen took home two wins from UConn on the weekend, including an 8-2 win at Brooklyn's Barclays Center Sunday afternoon. The sophomore netminder collected a 1.50 goals against average and .917 save percentage in backstopping the Irish to a pair of league wins. Petersen played for the RoadRunners in the NAHL during the 2011-12 season.
Former Aberdeen Wings/Brookings Blizzard and NAHL forward Cody Marooney was named the WCHA Offensive Player of the Week. The only player in the nation to tally two game-winning goals this past weekend, Marooney led Alabama Huntsville to a sweep at Lake Superior State – the Chargers' first-ever road brooming in WCHA play. The junior from Eden Prairie, Minn. had a multi-point effort Friday, assisting on the Chargers' first goal during a two-score, third-period comeback; then, he potted the game-winner at the 1:07 mark of overtime for a 5-4 triumph. Saturday, he scored 18:42 into the first period to give UAH a 1-0 lead en route to a 5-0 victory. Marooney finished his three-point weekend with four shots and a +3 rating. Marooney played for the Wings in the NAHL during the 2010-11 season and then for the Brookings Blizzard in the 2012-13 season.
Former NAHL goalie Garrett Bartus was named the SPHL Player of the Week. The Macon Mayhem goalie went 1-1-0, posting a 1.00 goals against average and .970 save percentage as he backstopped the expansion Mayhem to their first win. On Friday, the St. Charles, IL native stopped 34 of 36 shots as the Huntsville Havoc rallied for a 2-1 win over Macon. On Saturday, Bartus made 30 saves, including 16 in the second period, as Macon blanked Columbus 4-0 for the first shutout in Mayhem history. Bartus played four seasons in the NAPHL from 2006-10. The first three seasons were with the Mahoning Valley Phantoms from 2006-09 and the last season was with the St. Louis Bandits in 2009-10.