NAHL Alumni Update
October 10, 2018
The NAHL alumni report returns for another season this week as the NHL and NCAA got their respective seasons started. Let’s take a look at NAHL alumni who are making an impact:
The Atlantic Hockey Media Association released the results of its 2018-19 Preseason Media Poll ahead of the beginning of regular season play in Atlantic Hockey, with the Air Force Falcons projected as the top team in the conference for the upcoming season. Air Force has more NAHL alumni on their roster than any other NCAA Division I team. In addition, five former players were named to the Pre-season All-Conference Teams
Derek Barach, F, Canisius (Lone Star Brahmas, 2013-14)
Cameron Heath, D, Canisius (Kalamazoo Jr. K-Wings, 2012-13)
Luke Lynch, F, Robert Morris (Johnstown Tomahawks, 2014-16)
Michael Wilson, F, Army (Coulee Region, MN Magicians, 2015-16)
Brennan Kapcheck, D, AIC (Aston Rebels, 2015-17)
Hockey East Player of the Week: Stefanos Lekkas, G, Vermont (Springfield Jr. Blues, 2013-14)
Stefanos Lekkas stopped a career- best 48 shots, including 23 in the third period, to backstop Vermont to a 5-2 road win over #4 Michigan to open the season. He made 19 of his 48 shots with an extra Michigan attacker on the ice, including 15 in the third period alone.
NCHC Offensive Player of the Week: Westin Michaud, F, Colorado College (Corpus Christi IceRays, 2013-15)
Michaud led the Tigers to a season-opening win at Alaska Anchorage on Saturday, posting four points in the 10-2 victory. He scored two goals, including the game-winner, and added two assists, as the Tigers scored 10 goals in a game for the first time since Nov. 30, 2002. Michaud also finished a career-high +5 in the contest and scored on his only two shots on goal in the game. Three of Michaud’s four points came in the first period, assisting on the go-ahead goal to break a 1-1 tie, while scoring twice in a span of 3:14, with his first goal the game-winner. He finished the series with four points and a +4 plus/minus.
NCHC Defenseman of the Week: River Rymsha, D, Miami (OH) (Wenatchee Wild, 2013-14)
In his first weekend as a RedHawk, graduate transfer River Rymsha shined bright on the ice. The Dartmouth graduate earned a secondary assist on Miami's first goal of the season in a 5-1 season-opening win Saturday night. In the victory, he helped MU hold Alabama Huntsville to one goal on 18 shots, while killing a pair of power plays. Sunday Rymsha earned First Star of the Game, one-timing a shot home in the second period to break a scoreless tie for his first goal as a RedHawk, which turned out to be the game-winner. He also assisted on Miami's second tally of the night, while helping shut out the Chargers on just 11 shots and finishing +3 in a 4-0 win. Rymsha's three-point weekend matches his season stat line from his final season at Dartmouth (28 games), while he put six shots on goal, was +3 and led a penalty kill that went 5-for-5 in the series.
WCHA Goaltender of the Week: Mareks Mitens, G, Lake Superior St. (Aston Rebels, 2016-17)
One of only three goaltenders with a shutout on opening weekend, and the only to post a clean sheet on the road, Mitens was sensational in Lake Superior State's 1-0, sweep-clinching win Sunday at Merrimack. After not playing Saturday, the sophomore turned aside all 31 shots he faced in the series finale – including 25 after the Lakers scored the game's lone goal 37 seconds into the second period. In fact, Mitens protected the 1-0 lead despite LSSU being outshot 25-12 over the final 39:23. This is the first career WCHA weekly award for the Ventspils, Latvia native.
NHL 3rd Star of the Week: Ben Bishop, G, Dallas Stars (Texas Tornado, 2004-05)
Bishop stopped 62 of 63 shots against, compiling a 2-0-0 record with a 0.50 goals-against average, .984 save percentage and one shutout to help the Stars (2-0-0, 4 points) begin the campaign with a pair of wins. He turned aside all 30 shots he faced in a 3-0 victory against the Arizona Coyotes Oct. 4, becoming the third goaltender in Stars/ North Stars history to earn a shutout in a season opener. Bishop then made 32 saves, including 15 in the third period, in a 5-1 victory over the Winnipeg Jets Oct. 6. The 31-year-old Denver native has appeared in 325 career NHL games, amassing a 176-97-30 record, 2.34 goals-against average, .919 save percentage and 25 shutouts.
Former NAHL'ers Dan Sexton (Wichita Falls Wildcats, 2005-06) and Stephane Da Costa (Texas Tornado, 2006-07) are teammates with the KHL's Avtomoblist Yekaterinburg in the KHL. Sexton off to a great start with Yekaterinburg as he is currently in 5th in the entire KHL in scoring with 17 points.
Former NAHL MVP Patrick Maroon (Texarkana/St. Louis Bandits, 2005-07) discusses with ESPN on the decision to come home and play for the St. Louis Blues (read)