NAHL announces Bauer Hockey Divisional Stars of the Week
The North American Hockey League (NAHL) today announced the Divisional Stars of the Week presented by Bauer Hockey for the week ending January 12, 2020. The Divisional Stars of the Week is a weekly feature during the 2019-20 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: Dante Sheriff, Forward, Austin Bruins
For the third week in a row Austin Bruins forward Dante Sheriff, 20, has earned Central Star honors thanks to three more wins during the week for the Bruins. The 5’11/175 lbs. native of Woodbridge, Ontario, and Mercyhurst recruit had another big week, helping Austin to three more wins. On Thursday, Sheriff had two goals and two assists in a 5-1 win in St. Cloud against the Blizzard. On Friday, he picked up two assists in a 3-2 home win over the Blizzard and then on Saturday, Sheriff had the game-winning goal and two assists in a 7-4 road win in St. Cloud. For the season, Sheriff leads the Bruins in scoring with 45 points in 33 games played, which includes a current 10-game point streak where he has posted 25 points in those 10 games. “Dante had another big weekend for us. He’s a special player and he can do amazing things. We need him and his teammates to continue playing well going forward,” said Bruins head coach Steve Howard.
2nd Star: Grant Johnson, F, Bismarck Bobcats
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Luke Aquaro, F, St. Cloud Blizzard – Mack Byers, F, Aberdeen Wings – Clayton Cosentino, F, Aberdeen Wings – Kimball Johnson, D, Minnesota Wilderness – Aaron Myers, F, Minnesota Wilderness – Tiernan Shoudy, F, Austin Bruins – Adam Stacho, F, Bismarck Bobcats
East Division Star of the Week: Zak Currie, Forward, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights
Thanks to two more wins this past weekend Zak Currie, 20, and his Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights ran their winning streak to four straight games. The 5’11/175 lbs. native of Grand Rapids, Michigan, played a big role in two home wins over the Maryland Black Bears. On Friday, Currie, who is also an NAPHL grad, had a goal and an assist in a 4-3 overtime win. On Saturday, he scored the game-winning goal in a 4-2 win. For the season, Currie is 4th in team scoring with 24 points in 33 games played. “Zak’s consistent play and attention to detail in all situations of the game has elevated his game to the next level. Zak has played a major part in leading us to a great start to the second half of the season,” said Knights head coach Tom Kowal.
2nd Star: Isaiah Fox, F, Maine Nordiques
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Tyrone Bronte, F, Wlikes-Barre/Scranton Knights – Nick DeSantis, F, New Jersey Titans – Noah Finstrom, F, Jamestown Rebels – Max Kouznetsov, F, Johnstown Tomahawks – Mitch Machlitt, F, New Jersey Titans – Eric Olson, F, Jamestown Rebels – Tristan Poissant, F, Johnstown Tomahawks – Casper Soderling, D, Maine Nordiques
Midwest Division Star of the Week: Luke Farthing, Defenseman, Chippewa Steel
Chippewa Steel defenseman Luke Farthing, 20, helped his team to a weekend home-and-home sweep of the Janesville Jets. The 5’10/180 lbs. native of Stoutsville, Ohio, was not only solid at both ends of the ice with a +6 rating in the two wins, but he also provided a lot of the offense for the Steel with four goals from the blueline. On Friday, Farthing had the only goal in a 1-0 win over the Jets. On Saturday, he had a hat-trick, including another game-winner, in a 5-1 road win. For the season, Farthing leads all Steel defensemen in scoring with 13 points in 31 games played. “Luke's skating ability has helped us to generate offensive opportunities whenever he's on the ice. He works hard and does things the right way for us, which is why he's been such a big part of our team. He impacts games in many ways, and this weekend it was scoring goals, which helped us win two big hockey games,” said Steel head coach Carter Foguth.
2nd Star: Trent Burnham, G, Chippewa Steel
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Robert Christy, F, Minnesota Magicians – Jack Johnston, F, Fairbanks Ice Dogs – Grant Riley, G, Janesville Jets – Austin Ryman, G, Fairbanks Ice Dogs – Caden Villegas, F, Springfield Jr. Blues – Samuel Vyletelka, G, Minnesota Magicians – Ryan Wilson, G, Springfield Jr. Blues
South Division Star of the Week: Jordan Venegoni, Forward, Amarillo Bulls
Thanks to a three-game weekend home sweep of the Odessa Jackalopes, the Amarillo Bulls moved into 1st place in the South Division. Forward Jordan Venegoni, 19, played a big role in the win, picking up seven points in the three games. On Friday, Venegoni had a goal and an assist in a 4-0 win. On Saturday, he had two goals, including the game-winner, and an assist in a 5-1 win. On Sunday, he recorded two more goals in a 7-1 win. For the season, Venegoni is 2nd in team scoring with 38 points in 37 games played. “Jordan has taken his game to the next level in the past two months. His skating ability creates pressure on our opponent and his Hockey IQ gives him the chances to make plays and score. He is impacting our team in all situations and quickly turning into one of the most dominant offensive players in the NAHL. I have no doubt that he is going to be a difference maker at the NCAA Division 1 level,” said Bulls head coach Rocky Russo.
2nd Star: Tim Khokhlachev, F, Shreveport Mudbugs
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Maiszon Balboa, G, Shreveport Mudbugs – Brandon Holt, D, New Mexico Ice Wolves – Devan Tongue, F, Amarillo Bulls