President's Update - March 24th, 2015

Michael Jordan 2014-15 MVP & MVP Local in HHL….

Michael Jordan of the Raymore Rockets is taking some hardware home as he has been announced as the Highway Hockey League Most Valuable player in 2014-15. He was also named the winner of the Eckdahl-Jenkins Most Valuable Player Local Award. In addition to winning these two trophies, Michael is sharing the Tyson Sievert HHL Scoring Champion trophy with Brett Leffler as both players recorded 40 points this year. Jordan was also named to the All-Star team as the all-star Center in the HHL.

Travis Orr of the Cupar Canucks is the winner of the Stats-Trott Award for rookie of the Year in the HHL. Orr recorded 11 goals and 15 assists in 17 games this year.

The winner of the HHL Most Sportsmanlike Player Award is Chad Filteau of the Cupar Canucks.

The Ken Hale Memorial Award for Manager of the Year goes to Garnet Hubick of the Strasbourg Maroons. The Lynwood Miller Coach of the Year Award goes to Tayler Jordan from the Wynyard Monarchs.

This year’s All-Star team is comprised of six players from five different teams:

Goaltender:       David Perkin, Wynyard Monarchs

Defenceman:    Russ Nielson, Bethune Bulldogs

Defenceman:    Eric Schultz, Strasbourg Maroons

Center:               Michael Jordan, Raymore Rockets

Right Wing:       Chad Filteau, Cupar Canucks

Left Wing:          Brett Leffler, Wynyard Monarchs

Brett Leffler is the only returnee to the All-star team from last year and has been an all-star three years in a row.

The Pennant winners are the Bethune Bulldogs with 14 wins, 3 losses and 1 OT/SO loss for 29 points.

The Team Goaltending Award went to Ryan Senft & Ryan Seibel of the Bethune Bulldogs with a 2.93GAA. Seibel won this award in 2008 with Kelley Lueck. This is the first time for Ryan Senft. This is the exact same average posted by last year’s winners Nathan Fischl and Colin Monroe with the Avonlea Arrows.  The Strasbourg Maroons have the lowest team GAA ever posted in 1976 at 2.44GAA. Bill Heinitz was the Maroons goalie at that time and is on this trophy four times.

All winners of our awards will be receiving a plaque to honour their achievement along with the League trophies. Conratulations to all of our award winners.

In Provincials…The Bethune Bulldogs played game one of their Provincial ‘A’ senior final in Lanigan on Saturday evening. In the first period, Lanigan scored on the power play three minutes in and that was the only goal of the period. Shots were just 8-4 for the Pirates. In the second period Lucas Ulmer scored shorthanded just three minutes into the period to tie the game up and that was the only goal of the second period. Shots were now 13-12 for Bethune. Early in the third period the Pirates got their second power play goal of the game and went back up 2-1. Russ Nielson would score to tie this game up with 14 minutes left in the period. MacAngus would then score off of a turnover and the Bulldogs had their first lead of the game. With three minutes left in the period Brent Twordik would score his second goal of the game for the Pirates and the game was tied again. With just 2.1 seconds left in the game Lanigan would score their third power play goal of the game and win 4-3. The Pirates were 3 for 7 on the power play and the Bulldogs were 0 for 6. Shots were 29-24 for the Bulldogs. Game two of this series is in Bethune on Friday evening at 8:00 p.m.

League Finals….Game three of the League final was played in Bethune on Wednesday evening.  Keeping with the trend of the first two games there were plenty of penalties. Brett Leffler opened the scoring with a shorthanded goal halfway through the first period. Dustin MacAngus would score for the Bulldogs and the first period ended in a 1-1 tie. In the second period Lucas Ulmer would score to give the Bulldogs their first lead of the game early in the period. The Monarchs would then score two power play goals in 42 seconds as Riley Storzuk and then Chad Mazurak would score. Tyler Shewchuk would score Wynyard’s second shorthanded goal of the game and the Monarchs had a 4-2 lead heading into the third period. At this point shots were 31-25 Bethune. In the third period Jacob Ulmer scored early in the period to get the Bulldogs to within one but that goal would be answered a few minutes later as Donovan Hall would score the Monarch’s first even strength goal. With just over six minutes  left in the period Russ Nielson would score on the power play and less than two minutes later Jacob Ulmer would score on the power play and this game would go to overtime for the second consecutive game in Bethune. Six minutes into the overtime the comeback was complete as Derek Fuchs scored to make the final 6-5 and the Bulldogs assumed a 2-1 lead in the final. The final penalty tally was twelve minors and three misconducts for the Bulldogs and sixteen minors, one major and two game misconducts for the Monarchs.

Game four was played Monday evening in Wynyard. The Bulldogs got off to a quick start as Kyle Ross scored unassisted just 40 seconds into the game. Ross would score again two minutes later assisted by Lucas Ulmer and Jake Ulmer. Late in the period Bethune would kill off a 5 on 3 power play and then Wynyard would score with a couple minutes left in period on a goal from Donovan Hall assisted by Matt Strueby and Joey MacDonald. With fifteen seconds left in the period Dale Spelchen would score unassisted and the game was tied 2-2 going into the third period. Early in the second period Mark Lustig would score to get the Bulldogs back on top assisted by Tyler Riche and Kayne Ulmer. Later in the period in what might have been a turning point, the Wynyard Monarchs killed off over a minute of 5 on 3 and then Eric Popadynec would score unassisted to tie this game up. Brett Leffler would then score quickly to give the Monarchs their first lead of the game and then with four minutes left in the period Matt Strueby scored on a wraparound assisted by Brett Leffler and Donovan Hall. After that goal Bethune would go on the power play and Chad Mazurak would score shorthanded assisted by Riley Storzuk. Kyle Ross would then score his third game of the evening on the same power play. Wynyard led 6-4 after two periods. In the third period Justin Zadorozniak was stopped by Ryan Seibel on a penalty shot. Bethune would end up in penalty trouble late in the game and Brett Leffler would score on the power play unassisted with just over a minute to go and the final score was 7-4 Wynyard. Dave Perkin picked up the win in net for the Monarchs and Ryan Seibel was in net for the Bulldogs. Wynyard had five minor penalties and Bethune had four minor penalties, a major and a game misconduct. Game five is Wednesday evening in Bethune at 8:00 p.m. I believe this is the first game five since the Southey/Avonlea final in 2006.

The season is almost over….Game five of the League Final is Wednesday evening and on Friday evening the Bulldogs will host Lanigan in game two of the Provincial ‘A’ final. If a game three is required in that series it will be on Monday in Lanigan….then the season will be over. If you can’t make the Provincial games check out 107.5 Bolt FM on line for the broadcasts.

Thank you for supporting the Highway Hockey League.

Gerry Tomkins

President - HHL