Kyle Connor, Liam Pecararo, Matt Nelson, and Jason Pawloski all earned weekly USHL awards for their performances during the 17th week of the regular season. (photos by Rob Bindler, Britta Lewis, Omaha Lancers, Whiteshark Photography)
The United States Hockey League today announced the CCM and Reebok player awards for the 17th week of the 2013-14 USHL regular season.
Winners include Kyle Connor of the Youngstown Phantoms and Liam Pecararo of the Waterloo Black Hawks, recognized as co-recipients of CCM Forward of the Week; Matt Nelson of the Omaha Lancers, chosen as CCM Defenseman of the Week; and Jason Pawloski of the Indiana Ice, earning honors as Reebok Goaltender of the Week.
Kyle Connor, F, Youngstown Phantoms: The Shelby Township, Michigan native scored five points (3g, 2a) over two games played during the weekend. He started the weekend by dishing out an assist in the 4-3 loss to the Muskegon Lumberjacks on Friday. The 17-year-old then scored a goal in the first period on Saturday before tallying two more in the second, including the game-winner, to complete his first USHL hat trick and lead Youngstown to the 6-3 win over Team USA. He also added an assist and tied a game high with a plus-four rating. Committed to the University of Michigan, Connor leads his team in scoring with 39 points (16g, 23a), which also currently ranks tied for fourth overall in the USHL.
Liam Pecararo, F, Waterloo Black Hawks: The University of Maine commit posted a four-goal week, leading the Hawks to a pair of wins. Friday night, the Canton, Massachusetts native recorded his first career USHL hat trick in a big 8-3 win over the Sioux Falls Stampede. Back at home on Saturday, Pecararo found the net again in a 3-1 win over the Des Moines Buccaneers, extending his point streak to four games. The 17-year-old also recorded a plus-four on-ice rating over the weekend, and he is now the team leader in that category with a plus-19 on the year. He is also second on the team with 29 points (11g, 18a) in 25 games played this season.
Matt Nelson, D, Omaha Lancers: The 19-year-old tallied a pair of goals to help the Lancers pick up four out of a possible six points last week. After being held off the scoresheet in Wednesday’s 2-1 loss to the Tri-City Storm, Nelson scored the game-winning goal in Friday’s 5-3 win over the Storm. The Princeton University commit continued his heroics on Saturday when he tallied the game-winner in a 5-3 win over the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders. The Edina, Minnesota native has scored three goals over his last five games and is tied for second amongst League defensemen with seven goals on the season.
Jason Pawloski, G, Indiana Ice: Hailing from Omaha, Nebraska, the goaltender led the Ice to a pair of wins while posting a 1.00 goals-against average and .950 save-percentage in the process. Friday night against Team USA, the Minnesota State University, Mankato commit stopped 24 shots in a 5-1 win. He then turned aside 14 of the 15 shots he saw in a 4-1 win over the Muskegon Lumberjacks on Saturday. It was the ninth time this season he has allowed one goal or fewer in a start. The 18-year-old now ranks second amongst USHL goaltenders with 17 wins, and his four losses are the second fewest among netminders that have appeared in at least 20 games. Pawloski also ranks sixth in the League with a 2.48 GAA.
(Nathan can be reached at email@example.com)