The North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL) today announced the Three Stars of the Week presented by Combat Hockey for the week ending December 30, 2012. The three stars of the week is an award given each week of the regular season to the top performing players in the NA3HL as nominated by their head coaches.
1st Star: Tony Paulson, forward, North Iowa Bulls
In the lone game in the NA3HL last weekend, North Iowa forward Tony Paulson was the true #1 star. Not only did the 18-year-old forward factor in on both North Iowa goals in regulation, but he also scored in the shootout to help give the Bulls a 3-2 shootout win over the Twin City Steel this past Saturday. The native of Maple Grove, Minnesota, scored North Iowa’s first goal and assisted on their second goal, which both came in the 1st period. Paulson (5’9/165) then added a shootout goal to help the Bulls win and increase their lead in the West Division. For the season, Paulson has 26 points in 16 games played since joining the Bulls in early November. “Tony’s goal was a great individual effort and great shot,” said Bulls head coach Todd Sanden. “He has been really consistent for us and finds himself on the scoresheet every night. He is a big reason we have good depth up front.”
2nd Star: Noah Anderson, defenseman, Twin City Steel
Twin City defenseman Noah Anderson, 18, had a little extra incentive to play well this past Saturday. The defenseman from Groveland, New York, was playing against his former team in the North Iowa Bulls, and he made his effort count on Saturday. Anderson (5’10/175) assisted on both Twin City goals, which came during a 3rd period comeback to send the game into overtime and eventually a shootout, as they Steel were edged 3-2. The Steel still picked up a point in the shootout loss, thanks in large part to Anderson. After spending the first nine game with North Iowa this seasn, Anderson has thrived for the Steel the past 15 games, which he has 15 points. “Noah is such a good two-way defenseman and in a short period of time has really developed into one of go-to guys,” said Steel head coach Aaron Slagle. “He plays with a lot of confidence and came up big in the game against North Iowa. It meant a lot to him to play well. North Iowa is a tough place to play and I thought he responded very well.”
3rd Star: Tom Bartel, forward, Twin City Steel
In this past Saturday’s game against North Iowa, Twin City forward Tom Bartel, 19, scored both Steel goals in regulation to help the team climb back from a 2-0 deficit, ultimately losing 3-2 in a shootout. The forward from Roseville, Minnesota, scored three minutes apart in the 3rd period to tie the game at 2-2. It was Bartel’s third goals in his last two games. Bartel (5’9/155) was also called upon in the shootout, but missed his chance to score as the Bulls ultimately took the extra point. It still didn’t diminsh the fact that Bartel played very well and continued his impressive season, in which Bartel is second on the team in scoring with 29 points in 26 games played to date. “Tom has been a leader and a go-to guy all season long,” said Steel head coach Aaron Slagle. “He works hard and worked hard to get those goals in the 3rd period against North Iowa. He has come up big for our team many times this season.”
Honorable Mention (alphabetical order): Matt Kroska, forward, North Iowa Bulls.