The North American Hockey League (NAHL) today announced the Divisional Stars of the Week presented by Bauer Hockey for the week ending February 25, 2018. The Bauer Hockey Divisional Stars of the Week is a weekly feature during the 2017-18 regular season that honors the top performing players in each of the four NAHL divisions. Only players that are nominated by their respective teams are considered for the Divisional Players of the Week award.
Central Division Star of the Week: Mads Sogaard, goaltender, Austin Bruins
The Austin Bruins pulled to within two points of 1st place in the Central Division thanks to a weekend home sweep of the Minot Minotauros. In goal for the Bruins was rookie netminder Mats Sogaard. The 17-year-old native of Aalborg, Denmark, allowed just one goal in the two wins, stopping 55 of 56 possible shots. On Friday, Sogaard (6’6/212) made 26 saves in the 2-1 win and on Saturday, he posted his first shutout of the season as he stopped all 29 shots that came his way in a 2-0 shutout win. For the season, Sogaard has a 11-4-1 record with a 2.71 goals against average and a 90.9% save percentage. “We are very proud of Mads. He made some big saves over the weekend to get us two wins. He's a very young goalie, but he's been playing like a solid veteran all season. We are looking forward to seeing Mads continue to develop with Coach Al Rooney's guidance,” said Bruins head coach Steve Howard.
2nd Star: Johnny Roberts, G, Bismarck Bobcats
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Isaac Kobienia, F, Minnesota Wilderness – Xander Lamppa, F, Austin Bruins – Samu Lonkila, G, Minot Minotauros – Gino Lucia, F, Minnesota Wilderness – Keenan Lund, F, Minot Minotauros – Alex Pollock, F, Bismarck Bobcats
East Division Star of the Week: Jack Leavy, goaltender, Johnstown Tomahawks
Thanks to a weekend home sweep of the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights, the Johnstown Tomahawks stayed in the playoff race in the East Division. Backstopping the team to both wins was 20-year-old netminder Jack Leavy. The 6’5/205 lbs. native of Birmingham, Michigan, stopped 67 of a possible 70 shots in the two wins. On Friday, Leavy made 32 saves in a 4-1 win, and on Saturday, he made 35 saves in a 3-2 win. While with the Tomahawks, Leavy has posted a 5-7-2 record with a 2.94 goals against average and a 91.4% save percentage. “It was a great weekend for our guys to bounce back with a sweep. Jack was outstanding both nights and led the way. He controlled the game for us and came up with some big time saves. I couldn’t be happier to see him play so well and lead our team to two very important wins,” said Johnstown head coach Mike Letizia.
2nd Star: Ryan Patrick, F, Philadelphia Rebels
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Jimmy Glynn, F, Philadelphia Rebels – Ben Schmidling, F, Johnstown Tomahawks
Midwest Division Star of the Week: Emil Zetterquist, goaltender, Coulee Region Chill
Coulee Region Chill goalie and St. Lawrence University recruit Emil Zetterquist, 19, had a big weekend to help his team to a home-and-home split against the high-powered Janesville Jets. The 6’1/182 lbs. native of Stockholm, Sweden, faced 85 shots in the two games and allowed just two goals, making 83 saves in the process. On Friday, Zetterquist made 40 saves in a close 2-1 loss at Janesville. On Saturday, Zetterquist stopped all 43 shots that came his way for his second shutout of the season as the Chill beat the Jets 1-0 in overtime. For the season, Zetterquist has a 12-14-6 record with a 2.75 goals against average and a 92.7% save percentage. “Emil had another fantastic weekend this past weekend. It is great to see him get recognized for his efforts. He is an elite goaltender that has a very bright future ahead of him,” said Chill head coach Ryan Egan.
2nd Star: Josh Benson, G, Fairbanks Ice Dogs
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Caleb Hite, F, Fairbanks Ice Dogs – Filip Karlsson, F, Kenai River Brown Bears – Connor Scahill, D, Kenai River Brown Bears – Quinn Warmuth, D, Coulee Region Chill
South Division Star of the Week: Jason Grande, goaltender, Amarillo Bulls
Amarillo Bulls goalie Jason Grande helped his club to a weekend road split with the Corpus Christi IceRays as the Bulls try and chase down a playoff spot in the South Division. The 19-year-old native of West Chester, Pennsylvania, only gave up two goals on the weekend, stopping 54 of 56 shots. On Friday, Grande (6’2/185) stopped all 24 shots that came his way for his fifth shutout of the season as the Bulls blanked the IceRays, 4-0. On Saturday, he made 30 saves in a 4-2 loss. For the season, Grande has a 15-16-5 record with a 2.78 goals against average and a 91.2% save percentage. “Jason has been our most consistent player for the entire season. His poise in the net gives us an opportunity to win every night. I have no doubt that he will be a tremendous player at the NCAA level and beyond,” said Bulls head coach Rocky Russo.
2nd Star: Mitchell Gibson, G, Lone Star Brahmas
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Gustavs Grigals, G, Shreveport Mudbugs – Alex Peterson, F, Amarillo Bulls – Cole Quisenberry, F, Shreveport Mudbugs – Jakub Sirota, D, Lone Star Brahmas