Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Pouliot Denny's WHL player of the week

Press Release

The Western Hockey League announced today that Portland Winterhawks’ defenceman Derrick Pouliot is the Denny’s WHL Player of the Week for the week ending January 19, 2014.

Pouliot recorded one goal and four assists for five points along with a +5 rating in two games over the past week, helping the Winterhawks post a pair of wins in that span.

On Friday, January 17th, Pouliot scored a power play goal and added two assists for a three-point effort while being named the game’s 2nd Star in an 8-2 victory over the visiting Moose Jaw Warriors.  On Sunday, January 19th, Pouliot picked up two assists and was chosen as the game’s 3rd Star in a 5-0 shutout win over the visiting Spokane Chiefs.

Pouliot, a 19-year-old from Weyburn, SK, is in his fourth season with Portland.  He currently leads all Winterhawks’ blue liners and sits tied for fifth among all WHL defenders in scoring with 40 points, including 11 goals, in 36 games this season.  The first overall pick from the 2009 WHL Bantam Draft, Pouliot has recorded 36 goals and 175 points in 223 career regular-season games for the Winterhawks, and has amassed eight goals and 41 points in 64 career playoff games.  Pouliot was selected in the first round, eighth overall, by the Pittsburgh Penguins in the 2012 NHL Draft.

The WHL has also nominated Taran Kozun of the Seattle Thunderbirds for the Vaughn CHL Goaltender of the Week award.  A 19-year-old product of Nipawin, SK, Kozun posted a 3-0 record with two shutouts over three starts for the Thunderbirds in the past week, allowing only two goals on 86 shots for a 0.65 goals-against average and a .977 save percentage in that span.  On Tuesday, January 14th, Kozun made 28 saves to earn a shutout and was the game’s 1st Star in his T-Birds’ debut in a 1-0 overtime victory over the Chiefs in Spokane.  On Friday, January 17th, Kozun made 26 saves for his second consecutive shutout while earning 1st Star honors in a 4-0 win over the visiting Tri-City Americans.  On Saturday, January 18th, Kozun stopped 30 of 32 shots while earning a victory over his former Club as the Thunderbirds skated to a 3-2 win in Kamloops.  Kozun is in his second full WHL campaign.  He was acquired by the Thunderbirds from Kamloops at the WHL trade deadline.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

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