The North American Hockey League (NAHL) today announced the Divisional Stars of the Week presented by Easton for the week ending October 26, 2014. The Divisional Stars of the Week is a weekly feature during the 2014-15 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: Jacob Kullberg, forward, Austin Bruins
It was a big weekend for the Bruins and forward Jacob Kullberg as the 20-year-old forward from Kallered, Sweden, helped his team to a weekend home sweep of the Bismarck Bobcats. In the two wins, Kullberg (5’9/180) had five points, which included three goals and two assists. On Friday, he scored twice, including the game-winning goal and also had an assist in a 4-2 win over the Bobcats. On Saturday, he added another goal and an assist in a 5-2 win. He was also a +4 for the weekend. For the season, Kullberg is tied for the team scoring lead with 12 points. “Jacob has really played well the last few weeks. He now understands the style of hockey in the NAHL. He is a fun guy to coach. He is creative, plays hard and scores all kinds of goals.”
2nd Star: Eric Hancock, G, Brookings Blizzard
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Alex Bitsakis, G, Bismarck Bobcats – Blake Lizotte, F, Minot Minotauros – Jon Lizotte, D, Minot Minotauros – Matt Perry, F, Bismarck Bobcats – Ian Scheid, D, Austin Bruins - Andrew Shortridge, G, Aberdeen Wings
Midwest Division Star of the Week: Chris Amsden, goaltender, Minnesota Magicians
Minnesota Magicians goalie Chris Amsden, 20, played a big part in the team’s sweep of Aberdeen this weekend. The 6’4/185 lbs. native of St. Peter, Minnesota got the start in both games and gave up just a single goal in the two contests. On Friday, he made 24 saves in a 4-1 win. On Saturday, Amsden posted his first career NAHL shutout with 18 saves in a 2-0 win over the Wings. For the weekend, Amsden stopped 42 of 43 shots that came his way. Last year, Amsden played in the NA3HL for the North Iowa Bulls, leading them to the Silver Cup Championship and was named to the NA3HL All-Rookie Team. "Chris was an important factor in our teams success this past weekend. To allow only 1 goal against in 2 games against a veteran and very good Aberdeen team speaks highly of his ability. He is a fierce competitor who expects the best out of himself every day. We saw that competitive drive out of him both nights and we are proud of his accomplishment,” said Magicians head coach Tom Upton.
2nd Star: Niklas Lehtimaki, F, Minnesota Wilderness
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Ivan Chukarov, D, Minnesota Wilderness – Matt Colford, F, Minnesota Magicians – Jack Gessert, F, Kenai River Brown Bears – Hans Gorowsky, F, Fairbanks Ice Dogs – Tanner Schachle, F, Kenai River Brown Bears – Ethan Somoza, F, Fairbanks Ice Dogs
North Division Star of the Week: Sean Keating, goaltender, Soo Eagles
After being swept at home the weekend before, the Soo Eagles were on a mission this weekend as they beat their in-state rivals on the road in a sweep over the Michigan Warriors. Veteran goalie Sean Keating, 20, stepped up in a big way to spark his club to the sweep. The native of Grand Rapids, Michigan, wasn’t the original starter on Friday night, but after the Warriors scored three early 1st period goals, Keating (5’11/178) was inserted and stopped all 26 shots that came his way in 52+ minutes to get the 4-3 win. On Saturday, Keating made 19 saves in a 4-1 win. For the weekend, Keating stopped 45 of 46 shots. Like the Midwest Division Star this week Chris Amsden, Keating is an alum of the NA3HL. “This weekend he stepped in a played really well. It is always a tough situation to come in cold, but on Friday he gave us a spark. He made the saves he needed to keep the momentum going for us,” said Soo head coach Bruno Bragagnolo.
2nd Star: Ian Janco, D, Janesville Jets
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Noah Batis, F, Keystone Ice Miners – Casey Linkenheld, F, Johnstown Tomahawks – Lucas Little, D, Keystone Ice Miners – Chase Matson, F, Soo Eagles – Andrew Romano, F, Johnstown Tomahawks – Zach Yoder, D, Janesville Jets
South Division Star of the Week: Sebastian Vidmar, forward, Lone Star Brahmas
Now the NAHL’s goals leader, Lone Star Brahmas forward Sebastian Vidmar had another memorable weekend as the 20-year-old from Malmo, Sweden put up another five points, including four goals, in the Brahmas home sweep of the Odessa Jackalopes. On Friday, Vidmar (6’2/190) recorded a hat-trick, including the game-winning goal in a 5-2 win. On Saturday, Vidmar had another goal and added an assist in a 6-3 win. His 18 points leads the Brahmas in scoring and his 13 goals is tops in the NAHL. “Sebastian is really on a roll right now and because of it there has been a lot of interest from the NCAA. There was an initial adjustment to the NAHL style, but he has figured it out and is playing at an elite level,” said Brahmas head coach Dan Wildfong.
2nd Star: Wes Michaud, F, Corpus Christi IceRays
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Ryan Cusin, F, Corpus Christi IceRays – Ryan Polin, D, Topeka RoadRunners – Cam Strong, F, Topeka RoadRunners