The North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL) today announced the Divisional Stars of the Week presented by Easton Hockey for the week ending February 7, 2016. The divisional stars of the week is an award given each week of the regular season to the top performing players in each of the six divisions of the NA3HL as nominated by their head coaches.
Central Division Star of the Week: Thomas Hanson, forward, Wisconsin Whalers
Wisconsin Whalers forward Thomas Hanson, 20, made his one game count this past week as the native of Rochester, MN, exploded for five points in a 7-1 win over Chicago on Friday night. Hanson (5’11/175) had two goals and three assists and was also a +5 in the win. The five points extended his current point streak to eight straight games. Hanson, who was selected to and will play in the 2016 NA3HL Top Prospects Tournament for Central Division team, is 3rd in team scoring so far this season with 44 points in 36 games played. “Tommy is one of our leaders who has been playing awesome lately,” said Whalers head coach Tom McDermott.
2nd Star: Sean Mallonee, F, North Iowa Bulls
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Peter Henderson, F, Wisconsin Whalers – Zack St. John, G, North Iowa Bulls – Taylor Trapp, F, La Crosse Freeze – Matt Wolter, D, La Crosse Freeze
East Division Star of the Week: Dakota Ulmer, forward, West Michigan Wolves
The West Michigan Wolves continued to try and solidify their spot in the East Division playoff race with an important weekend road sweep of the Wooster Oilers. Forward Dakota Ulmer, 19, had a big weekend with six points in the two wins. On Friday, the native of Walled Lake, MI, had two goal and two assists in a 5-3 win and on Saturday, Ulmer (5’8/160) had a goal and an assist in a 6-4 win. For the season, Ulmer, who will be playing in the 2016 NA3HL Top Prospects Tournament for the East Division team, leads the Wolves in scoring with 50 points in 30 games played. “Dakota, through his speed and playmaking ability, is a consistent offensive producer. Dakota led they way this weekend with another up-tempo performance igniting the Wolves all weekend long,” said West Michigan head coach Mark Lawrence.
2nd Star: Josh Somers, F, Toledo Cherokee
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Mitch Campbell, F, West Michigan Wolves – Chas Distelrath, F, Metro Jets – Dominick Glavach, F, Pittsburgh Vengeance – Jacob Stack, G, Pittsburgh Vengeance – Pearce Vance, F, Metro Jets
Frontier Division Star of the Week: Alex Feese, goaltender, Gillette Wild
The Gillette Wild are knocking on the door of a playoff spot in the Frontier thanks to a weekend home sweep of the Helena Bighorns. In goal for both wins was veteran netminder Alex Feese. The 20-year-old native of Colorado Springs, CO, faced 66 shots in the two wins an made 63 saves. On Friday, Feese (5’8/180) made 32 saves in a 6-2 win over the Bighorns and on Saturday, he made 31 saves in a 5-1 win. For the season, Feese has an 11-11-0 record with 22 appearances, along with a 3.14 goals against average and a 90.6% save percentage. “Alex has played great for us all year. His leadership combined with his work ethic is very valuable to us continuing our push towards the playoffs,” said Gillette head coach Brendon Hodge.
2nd Star: Dillon Steh, F, Billings Bulls
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Mason Graves, F, Billings Bulls – Dylan Michaud, F, Bozeman Icedogs – Steven Nisbet, F, Bozeman Icedogs
Midwest Division Star of the Week: Jason Hoehn, forward, Peoria Mustangs
Thanks to a weekend home sweep over the Cincinnati Thunder, the Peoria Mustangs stayed in a 2nd place tie in the Midwest Division. Forward Jason Hoehn, 20, was the star offensively as the native of Port Byron, IL had seven points and was a +6 in the two wins. On Saturday, Hoehn (6’0/200) had two goals, including the game-winner, in a 6-1 win. On Sunday, Hoehn had two goals and three assists in a 9-4 win. For the season, Hoehn leads the Mustangs in scoring with 55 points in 38 games played. “The last three weeks Jason has been playing like a leader that's wants to win and won't be denied. As a result of that he is producing offensively and being rewarded for it,” said Mustangs head coach Tyler Rennette.
2nd Star: Joe Nolan, D, St. Louis Jr. Blues
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Ezekiel Estrada, F, St. Louis Jr. Blues – Josh Hill, F, Nashville Jr. Predators – Riley McCann, D, Nashville Jr. Predators – Nic Piech, G, Peoria Mustangs
South Division Star of the Week: Kyle Rimbach, forward, Atlanta Capitals
The Atlanta Capitals kept pace for the race for the South title this past week with a 3-0-1 record in four games last week. Forward Kyle Rimbach, 20, exploded for 12 points in the four games, which included multi-point games in each of the four. The native of San Deigo, CA, began the week with two goals and an assist in a 8-7 overtime loss to Texas on Thursday. On Friday, Rimbach (5’10/180) had a goal and an assist in a 6-1 win over Texas. On Saturday, he had a hat-trick and two assists in a 13-3 win over the Euless Jr. Stars and on Sunday, Rimbach had two assists in an 8-3 win over the Jr. Stars. For the season, Rimbach leads the Capitals in scoring with 62 points in 35 games played. “Kyle was all over the ice this past weekend. He led our team’s charge in responding the correct way during the four-game set. One thing Kyle would say and is a true testament to our team is that his success is due in large part to his teammates and that is what makes Kyle and our group special,” said Atlanta head coach Anthony Bohn.
2nd Star: Jacob Istre, D, Louisiana Drillers
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Jake Champaign, F, Point Mallard Ducks – Justin Delisle, D, Point Mallard Ducks – Arturas Laukaitis, F, Atlanta Capitals – Zac McKenna, F, Sugar Land Imperials – Miko Siren, F, Louisiana Drillers – Luca Valenza, F, Sugar Land Imperials
West Division Star of the Week: AJ Gullickson, forward, Alexandria Blizzard
Alexandria Blizzard forward AJ Gullickson, 20, helped his team to two more wins this past weekend in a home-and-home series with the Breezy Point North Stars. The native of Verona, WI, totaled six points and was a +3 in the two wins. On Friday, Gullickson (5’10/180) had the game-winning goal and three assists in a 5-2 road win in Breezy Point. On Saturday, he had another goal and an assist in an 8-4 win. For the season, Gullickson has 31 points in 31 games played. “AJ has really picked up his game after break. He's done a great job being a leader on and off the ice. He's playing to his strengths and just letting his natural ability take control,” said Blizzard head coach Jeff Crouse.
2nd Star: Joe Costello, F, Twin City Steel
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Casey Esselman, D, Granite City Lumberjacks – Jack Mellstrom, D, Alexandria Blizzard – Spencer Zwiener, F, Granite City Lumberjacks