The North American Hockey League (NAHL) has announced its monthly player awards for the month of September. The Bauer Hockey NAHL Forward of the Month is George Mika from the Amarillo Bulls. The Bauer Hockey NAHL Defenseman of the Month is Croix Evingson from the Shreveport Mudbugs. The Vaughn NAHL Goaltender of the Month is Luke Kania from the Minnesota Wilderness. Only players who are nominated by their respective teams are considered for the NAHL monthly awards.
Bauer Hockey NAHL Forward of the Month: George Mika, Amarillo Bulls
Amarillo Bulls veteran forward George Mika, 19, had a great month of September, finishing 2nd in scoring with 13 points, which was only one point behind teammate Kosta Likourezos. The native of Naples, Florida, finished with 5 goals and 8 assists and a +4 rating in 8 games during the month. Mika (5’11/181) had a five-game point streak during the month, which included 7 points at the NAHL Showcase as the Bulls went 3-0-1 at the event. 2016-17 marks his third year playing in the NAHL. In 83 career NAHL games, he has recorded 60 points. “Obviously, his point totals have contributed greatly to our success, but the bigger picture for George is the all-around player he has become. He plays at both ends of the ice, he plays on special teams, he is our best face-off man and he provides us with the leadership we need to be successful,” said Bulls head coach Matt Nicholson.
Runner-Up: Parker Mismash, Bismarck Bobcats
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Andrew Bellant, Aston Rebels – Ryan Burnett, Wichita Falls Wildcats – Kevin Dineen, Coulee Region Chill – Jack Gates, Janesville Jets - Andrew Hart, Topeka RoadRunners – Dalton Hunter, Johnstown Tomahawks – Austin Kamer, Lone Star Brahmas – Ryan Kero, Fairbanks Ice Dogs – Matt Kidney, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights – Matt Long, Springfield Jr. Blues – Frankie Melton, Shreveport Mudbugs – Jack Murphy, Minot Minotauros – Brad Power, Corpus Christi IceRays – Brendan Skarda, Minnesota Magicians
Bauer Hockey NAHL Defenseman of the Month: Croix Evingson, Shreveport Mudbugs
September saw the debut of the Shreveport Mudbugs into the NAHL, which included the great play of defenseman Croix Evingson. The 6’5/210 lbs. native of Anchorage, Alaska, made an immediate impact for the Mudbugs, who posted a 3-2-1 record in their first six games of the season. The 19-year-old had 8 points in just six games during the month, which also included a +8 rating. Evingson also posted two three-point games during the month and had one goal and seven assists. “Croix is a legitimate NCAA Division I prospect. He has been a very solid player for us and we were excited to get him in the NAHL Draft this summer. We rely heavily on him in all situations and his combination of size and puck-moving ability makes him a great all-around defenseman,” said Shreveport head coach Karlis Zirnis.
Runner-Up: Jordan Fralich, Bismarck Bobcats
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Joseph Camplieto, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights – Matt Denman, Minnesota Magicians – Jake Dittel, Minot Minotauros - Seamus Donohue, Wichita Falls Wildcats – Matt Doran, Coulee Region – Cody Fleckenstein, Corpus Christi IceRays – Zak Galambos, Johnstown Tomahawks – Simon Loof, Lone Star Brahmas – Adam Roeder, Janesville Jets – Jake Rosenbaum, Topeka RoadRunners – Keenan Sabatini, Springfield Jr. Blues – Jeff Solow, Amarillo Bulls
Vaughn NAHL Goaltender of the Month: Luke Kania, Minnesota Wilderness
Veteran goalie Luke Kania, 20, made an immediate impact for the Wilderness in his first action of the season, which came at the NAHL Showcase. The native of Chicago, Illinois, picked up right where he left off in last year’s Robertson Cup by putting up some incredible numbers in the month of September. Kania (6’2/190) posted a 3-1-0 record and allowed just five goals in four games. He faced a total of 138 shots and made 133 saves, which was good for a 96.2% save percentage and a 1.26 goals against average in September. The Brown University recruit also had one shutout in a 3-0 road win in Springfield on September 30th. “Luke gives us a chance to win every night. He carries himself like a true professional and has taken on a leadership role this year and earned a lot of respect from his teammates. He is a player that we have great confidence in and is an elite goaltender at this level,” said Wilderness head coach Tim Madsen.
Runner-Up: Mareks Mitens, Aston Rebels
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Nikita Babintsev, Amarillo Bulls – CJ Boothe, Fairbanks Ice Dogs – Evan Fear, Springfield Jr. Blues – Daniil Gerasimov, Minnesota Magicians – Eric Gordon, Lone Star Brahmas - Colt Hanks, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights – Jonny Hogue, Odessa Jackalopes – Drew Hotte, Johnstown Tomahawks – Lucas Murray, Minot Minotauros – John Roberts, Shreveport Mudbugs – Mike Rockwell, Topeka RoadRunners – Derek Schaedig, Janesville Jets – Will Ulrich, Bismarck Bobcats – Tomas Vomacka, Corpus Christi IceRays
Vaughn is the official Goaltending Equipment Partner to the NAHL and serves as the Preferred Goaltending Equipment Supplier of the NA3HL and NAPHL. Founded in 1982, Vaughn became one of the first major hockey production companies to use multiple foam layers in equipment. As strictly a goalie equipment company, the main focus for Vaughn is the innovation and quality of their product. Visit Vaughn online at: www.vaughnhockey.com