NA3HL announces monthly player awards for January
The North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL) has announced its monthly player awards for the month of January. The Bauer Hockey NA3HL Forward of the Month is Jacob Cummings of the Sheridan Hawks. The Bauer Hockey NA3HL Defenseman of the Month is Simon Herz of the Sheridan Hawks. The Vaughn NA3HL Goaltender of the Month is Cole Walter of the Peoria Mustangs. Only players who are nominated by their respective teams are considered for the NA3HL monthly awards.
Bauer Hockey NA3HL Forward of the Month: Jacob Cummings, Sheridan Hawks
The NA3HL’s leading scorer reached new heights in January, posting at least a point in each of his 10 outings, and multiple points in nine of those as he recorded 11g-18a—29pts — a pace of nearly three points-per-game. Cummings rang in the new year with six goals in his first four games of 2021, recording a pair of four-point efforts in that span. His highlight came from Jan. 9-24, a run of five games that saw Cummings light the lamp in each contest. Perhaps even more impressive is that Cummings’ goal-scoring is not dependent upon power-play time; all but two of his tallies came at even strength. His incredible production helped his season totals swell to 28g-56a—84pts in just 25 games on the year, a mark almost 20 points higher than any other NA3HL skater.
Runner-Up: Liam Bland, Missoula Jr. Bruins
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Noah Bissett, Granite City Lumberjacks — Tyler Blanchard, Texas Brahmas — Jack Campion, North Iowa Bulls — Bryson Fletcher, Great Falls Americans — Joey Gimberlin, New Ulm Steel — Riley Howse, St. Louis Jr. Blues — Jaron Ketterman, Texas RoadRunners — Alex Kupka, Willmar Warhawks — Mark Kurliandchyk, Louisiana Drillers — Reid Lune, Peoria Mustangs — Tyler Nelson, Milwaukee Power
Bauer Hockey NA3HL Defenseman of the Month: Simon Herz, Sheridan Hawks
Like his teammate Cummings, Herz now sits atop the NA3HL defensemen scoring ranks after a stellar January. The Parker, CO native paced all blueliners with 4g-9a—13pts in 10 games in January, inflating his league-leading scoring totals to 9g-29a—38pts in 26 games. Herz’s offensive consistency was unrivaled last month — he recorded points in eight of 10 games, and multiple points in four of those — yet his defensive game did not suffer. Herz was a plus-player in eight games, and never rated lower than +/- 0 in January, en route to a month-long mark of +20. With his top-class play on both sides of the puck, Herz was a key figure in the Hawks’ journey to a mark of 24 straight wins reached in January, and figures to lead their back end towards championship aspirations.
Runner-Up: Seth Wyatt-Manning, Texas Brahmas
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Joey Boccardi, St. Louis Jr. Blues — Jack Craycroft, Peoria Mustangs — Sean Davidson, Granite City Lumberjacks — Brice French, Texas RoadRunners — Devin Huie, Milwaukee Power — Nate Looft, New Ulm Steel — Ty Lorring, Great Falls Americans — Alex Marschel, Louisiana Drillers — Owen Miley, Missoula Jr. Bruins — Gavin Wendorf, North Iowa Bulls
Vaughn NA3HL Goaltender of the Month: Cole Walter, Peoria Mustangs
One of the most consistent goaltenders in the league this season, Walter was reliable as ever for the Mustangs in January, going 5-1-0 and stopping 136 of 145 shots along the way. Kicking off the month with five straight wins, Walter handled St. Louis twice — including notching a 15-save shutout over the Jr. Blues — and Wausau and Oregon once, before splitting the final weekend of the month with the division-leading Grizzlies. The Rochester, MN native stopped an average of 24 pucks per game, and finished the month strong with 22, 38 and 41-save performances. With a 1.59 GAA and .938 save percentage in January to go with his shutout this month, Walter continues to backstop Peoria’s title hopes in his second season between the pipes for the Mustangs.
Runner-Up: Lukas Haugen, Willmar Warhawks
Honorable Mention (alphabetical): Chris Branch, Louisiana Drillers — Owen Carlson, St. Louis Jr. Blues — Maxim Currie, Missoula Jr. Bruins — Joe Daninger, North Iowa Bulls — Dolan Gilbert, Texas Brahmas — Rustam Kulizade, El Paso Rhinos — Tim Pundt, Granite City Lumberjacks — Christian Wong-Ramos, Texas RoadRunners