The United States Hockey League today announced that Steve Summerhays of the Green Bay Gamblers has been named USHL Goaltender of the Year as determined by a vote of League coaches.
"I have never been one to get caught up in a goaltender's personal statistics except does he have the ability to win. When Steve is starting a game, more often than not, he is going to win it and that has been a huge part of our success this year," said Green Bay Gamblers Head Coach and General Manager Jon Cooper.
Summerhays, 19, was almost unbeatable this season as he posted a stellar 31-2-3 record in 39 appearances. He led all USHL goaltenders in wins (31) and goals-against-average (2.17) while his .914 save percentage was second in the League behind Omaha Lancers goaltender Jeff Teglia. The last loss in regulation for Summerhays was more than five months ago (November 14th, 2009). During the first month of the regular season, he earned shutouts in consecutive starts (October 24th and 30th). He also etched his name into the USHL record books when compiled a 20-game winning streak from November 20th, 2009 to February 26th, 2010, surpassing the mark of 18 straight wins by Matt Carney of the Des Moines Buccaneers during the 1998-99 season.
"He has just been an outstanding player in goal for the Gamblers since the day he stepped on the ice," said USHL Commissioner Skip Prince, "and his extraordinary record this year is actually a continuation of his great numbers last year as well. He's just a winner. Congratulations to Steve, and to the Green Bay organization for developing one of the best USHL goaltenders in recent history."
Summerhays has compiled a 46-8-4 record with a 2.24 GAA and .912 SV% in 62 regular season games over his two-year USHL career. He has never lost in regulation on home ice during his time in the League, posting a 25-0-4 record in those contests. Heading into this weekend, he has a career 5-1 record in the playoffs and perfect 4-0 mark in Green Bay.
The native of Anchorage, Alaska was named earlier this season as the starting goaltender for the East Division at the 2010 USHL All-Star Game. Last month, he announced his commitment to play collegiately at the University of Notre Dame.
(Nathan also is a writer for Maineiacs Post to Post and the Maine Hockey Journal. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)