Lakers Robertson, Minerva, Strachan, Cooper, Willner, Dushenko Named to 2015/16 SIJHL All-Star Teams

The Superior International Junior Hockey League announced Wednesday March 30th its third annual CCM Hockey first and second all-star teams for the 2015-16 season.

Each of the awards, which are presented by CCM Hockey, recognizes the individual accomplishments of six forwards, four defencemen and two goaltenders during regular season play in the SIJHL.

Along with the players, a pair of head coaches, two general managers and two individuals who serve in trainer and/or equipment manager capacities with the their respective clubs have been honoured for their efforts for the 2015-16 campaign.

The CCM first and second all-stars were selected, in part, by voting done by each of the SIJHL’s member clubs.

“The SIJHL would like to recognize each of the recipients of the CCM all-star awards for their efforts and accomplishments during the course of the 2015-16 season,” said SIJHL Commissioner Bryan Graham.

“The league would also like to acknowledge CCM Hockey for their commitment and partnership of this, the third annual CCM Hockey first and second all-star teams,” added Graham.

The following are the CCM Hockey first and second all-star team recipients for the 2015-16 SIJHL season.

CCM Hockey 1st All-Star Team

Forward: Braeden Allkins, Dryden Ice Dogs – As a first-year player in the SIJHL, the 19-year-old native of Golden, B.C. averaged just over a point-per-game in 2015-16 for the GM Ice Dogs. In all, Allkins collected 54 points on 19 goals and a team-high 35 assists.  His assist total was also the fourth-best mark in the SIJHL. He finished up second on his club in points.

Forward: Dylan Robertson, Fort Frances Lakers – The native of Atlanta, Ga., led the SIJHL in scoring this season with 88 points in 53 games on 31 goals and a league-best 57 assists. … His tally total was the second highest in the league.  Robertson paced all skaters in game-winning goals with seven. Was earlier named the SIJHL’s top defensive forward and is also one of three finalists for the league’s Amyottes Awards & Promotions most valuable player honour.  He boasted the highest point streak in the SIJHL this season at 15 games. Robertson, who is in his final year of Jr. A hockey, helped the Lakers claim their third consecutive league regular season crown with a SIJHL-best record of 46-8-0-0. Was named the SIJHL’s Gongshow Gear performer of the month for February.

Forward: Nicholas Nigro, Thunder Bay North Stars – Nigro led all SIJHL skaters in goals with 32. The 20-year-old from Thunder Bay completed the regular season finishing third in league scoring with 60 points in 51 games, which also paced the North Stars offensively.  Nigro also topped all players in power play markers with 14. He ended up tied for second overall in game-winning tallies with five.

Defence: Kyle Pouncy, Dryden Ice Dogs – A native of Kamloops, B.C., the 20-year-old Pouncy was third in offensive production among league blueliners in points with 42, which also paced the GM Ice Dogs D-corps.  He notched 13 goals and dished out 29 assists.   Led all SIJHL defencemen in game-winning goals with four.  Is also one of three finalists for the league’s Amyottes Awards & Promotions most valuable player honour.  Was one of seven players to compete in all 56 regular season contests.

Defence: Nick Minerva, Fort Frances Lakers – Was previously named the SIJHL’s top defenceman award recipient.  The 20-year-old native of New Brunswick, N.J., was the runaway leader in offensive production among all league defencemen with 73 points, which was also the second highest total among all SIJHL skaters.  In 52 games played, Minerva scored 21 times and doled out 52 assists for the league-leading Lakers helping lead them to their third consecutive regular season title.  His nine power play goals tied him for the most among SIJHL defensemen.  Was a second team CCM all-star selection last season.  Minerva’s assist total was second highest in the SIJHL.

Goaltender: Riley Corbin, Thunder Bay North Stars – Corbin is also one of three finalists for the league’s Amyottes Awards & Promotions most valuable player honour.  Was earlier named the SIJHL’s top goaltender for this season.  In 39 appearances, the 20-year-old Thunder Bay native produced 23 wins, which was the second-highest total in the SIJHL in 2015-16.  He also posted a 13-4-0-1 record after Jan. 1.  Corbin faced the most shots and produced the highest save total in the league at 1,421 and 1,305 respectively.  His four shutouts tied him for the SIJHL lead and he also earned three assists during the course of the season.  Was named the SIJHL’s Gongshow Gear performer of the month for January.

Coach: Wayne Strachan, Fort Frances Lakers – Earns his third consecutive CCM first team nod as coach.  During the course of the regular season, the Fort Frances product led his hometown Lakers to a franchise-record 46 victories against just eight losses in regulation and two others in a shootout.  The 2015-16 campaign also saw Fort Frances win their third consecutive SIJHL regular season title and finish fifth overall in the 131-team Canadian Junior Hockey League in the final Pointstreak Top 20 rankings.  Was earlier named the SIJHL coach of the year for a record-setting fifth time.  His club is also the two-time defending Bill Salonen Cup SIJHL champions.  Was also named to the first all-star team as general manager.

General Manager: Wayne Strachan, Fort Frances Lakers – Once again built the roster that finished first overall in league play for a third year in a row.  Also named to the first all-star team at head coach.  Continues to be one the best in the SIJHL in serving his day-to-day obligations to the league.

Trainer/Equipment Manager: Dale Cooper, Fort Frances Lakers – A tireless worker who puts in countless hours and does a tremendous job providing training and equipment needs for Fort Frances both at home and on the road.

CCM Hockey 2nd All-Star Team

Forward: Matt Houston, Dryden Ice Dogs – The veteran GM Ice Dogs forward averaged close to a point-per-game for Dryden this season. Skating in all 56 games, Houston tallied 22 times and doled out 30 assists for 52 points.  Scored six times while on the power play and twice more while shorthanded.  Was one of seven players to compete in all 56 regular season contests.

Forward: Konnar Dechaine, English River Miners – The 19-year-old Lac la Biche, Alta., product finished the regular season tied for fourth in total goals among all SIJHL players with 23.  Also added 20 assists giving him 43 points in regular season play.  Was one of seven players to compete in all 56 regular season contests.  Was one of three English River skaters with 40-plus points this season.

Forward: Andrew Willner, Fort Frances Lakers – Was also named the league’s most sportsmanlike player award recipient.  Skating in 52 contests for Fort Frances during the course of the 2015-16 campaign, the New Brighton, Minn., product incurred only five minor penalties in total, including just two in his final 25 games played.  Willner also contributed offensively in a big way for the Lakers finishing fourth in SIJHL offensive production with 58 points on 22 goals and 36 assists.  He also supplied eight power play markers, one more while shorthanded and three game-winning tallies.  Willner’s goal total tied him for seventh in the league.  His assist total was third highest in the SIJHL.

Defence: Dalton Johnson, Minnesota Iron Rangers – Taking to the ice in 47 games for Minnesota this season, Johnson led all Iron Rangers defencemen in points.  The 19-year-old from Cloquet, Minn., scored 10 times and dished out 27 assists for 37 points.  He finished fourth among league rearguards in scoring.  Johnson was tied for second in shorthanded goals among defensemen with two, which also knotted him four third overall in the SIJHL.

Defence: Aaron Wesley – Chisel, Thunder Bay North Stars – The 19-year-old from Thunder Bay bolstered the North Stars defensive corps and was one of the most dependable two-way rearguards in the league.  Wesley-Chisel was one of seven players in the SIJHL to suit up in all 56 regular season contests.  In his third year in the league he set new personal single season highs in goals, assists and points with eight, 26 and 34 respectively.  His offensive numbers were the fifth highest in the SIJHL among defencemen.

Goaltender, Pierce Dushenko, Fort Frances Lakers – The 20-year-old netminder from Coquitlam, B.C., led all league goalkeepers in wins with 28. … Finished second overall in both goals-against average and save percentage at 2.68 and .920 respectively.  Dushenko’s four shutouts tied him for the SIJHL lead.  His 1,052 saves were the third most of any league goalkeeper.

Coach: Kurt Walsten, Dryden Ice Dogs – In his second season behind the Dryden bench, Walsten guided the GM Ice Dogs to the second-best record in the SIJHL in 2015-16.  Through the 56-game regular season, Walsten’s club finished with a solid 33-15-4-4 record.  Under his guidance, Dryden boasted the best penalty kill percentage in the league and earned numerous mentions in the Canadian Junior Hockey League rankings throughout the campaign.

General Manager: Scott Kellaway, Thunder Bay North Stars – Taking over the Thunder Bay franchise late the off-season, Kellaway helped reverse the fortunes of the North Stars in 2015-16.  Also instrumental in a number of league initiatives aiding in the day-to-day operation of the SIJHL.

Trainer/Equipment Manager: Jim Wright, Dryden Ice Dogs – Long-time member of the GM Ice Dogs organization, who has provided dedicated service to his organization.  Earns his second CCM second team all-star honour for his efforts with Dryden.

Source: SIJHL

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