Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Hjelle Named USHL Goaltender of the Year

Press Release

The United States Hockey League today announced that Brady Hjelle of the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders has been selected as the 2010-11 USHL Goaltender of the Year as determined by a vote of League coaches and general managers.

Hjelle was an iron man for the RoughRiders appearing in 53 of the team's 60 regular season games and posting a 40-8-5 record. He played nearly 230 minutes more than any other USHL goaltender this season. The 40 wins by Hjelle set a new USHL single season record for wins by a goaltender, surpassing the win total of 36 set by Jeff Lerg of the Omaha Lancers during the 2004-05 season. Hjelle had the fourth best goals-against-average (2.21) in the League and ranked second in save percentage (.923) while making the most saves (1,419) in the USHL.

During his season debut on October 2nd, Hjelle stopped all 19 shots he faced to record a shutout in the 1-0 victory against Waterloo. It was his first of five shutouts during the regular season, tying for second among League goaltenders. He also posted a 7-2 record in shootouts, leading USHL netminders in shootout wins.

The 20-year-old from International Falls, Minnesota won 12 straight starts from February 20th to March 26th. He helped the RoughRiders tie a club record with 42 victories and earn the second Anderson Cup title in team history as they finished the regular season with a League best 42-12-6 record (90 points).

"Brady's season in goal has simply been best-in-show from opening night on," said USHL Commissioner Skip Prince, "and he's been a prime reason for the RoughRiders' Anderson Cup season and progress through the playoffs. Congratulations to a great young man and player are in order – but he's not done yet."

Additional accolades for Hjelle during the season included being named to the midseason USHL All-Star Team and three times being selected as the Reebok USHL Goaltender of the Week.

It was the second USHL season for Hjelle after first playing with the RoughRiders during the 2007-08 season and posting a 22-15-4 record. He will continue his hockey career next season at Ohio State University.

(Nathan can be reached at fourniern@students.nescom.edu)

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