2018-19 Minor Midget Player of the Year Awards presented at OHL Cup Banquet

OHL Cup

Toronto, ON – The Ontario Hockey League today announced the seven recipients of Minor Hockey Player of the Year Awards for players representing the four Ontario Hockey Federation Member Partners including the ALLIANCE, Greater Toronto Hockey League, Northern Ontario Hockey Association, and both the Ontario Minor Hockey Association’s ETA and SCTA regions, along with Hockey Eastern Ontario, and Hockey Northwestern Ontario.

Five of the seven Player of the Year award winners are currently competing at the 2019 OHL Cup Showcase Tournament powered by Under Armour including Shane Wright of the Don Mills Flyers (GTHL), Jack Michaelis of the Thunder Bay Kings (HNO), Chase Stillman of the Sudbury Minor Midget Wolves (NOHA), Brenden Sirizzotti of the Whitby Wildcats (OMHA ETA), and Lawson Sherk of the Halton Hurricanes (OMHA SCTA).  Deni Goure of the Chatham-Kent Cyclones (ALLIANCE) and Mason McTavish of the Pembroke Lumber Kings (HEO) were also recognized among the Minor Midget recipients.

“Congratulations to this year’s award recipients along with their families, coaches, and teammates who have supported these outstanding players not only this season but throughout their minor hockey careers,” said Joe Birch, the OHL’s Senior Director of Player Development and Special Events. “The OHL is proud to help recognize great achievements from across the province that come from hard work and dedication. Best of luck to all players as they prepare for the next step in their hockey and academic careers.”

All seven award recipients are forwards producing impressive offensive totals throughout the regular season.  Goure scored 22 goals and 31 assists for 53 points in 32 games for the Cyclones, while Wright scored 31 goals and 41 assists for 72 points in 33 games for the top ranked Flyers.  Michaelis chipped in 11 goals and six assists for 17 points in 20 games for the Kings, meanwhile McTavish tallied 47 goals and 32 assists for 79 points in 41 games for the Midget Lumber Kings, and Stillman recorded 19 goals and 36 assists for 55 points in 24 games for the Wolves.  In the OMHA, Sirizzotti led all award recipients with 93 points in 36 games including 32 goals and 61 assists for the league champion Wildcats, with Sherk scoring 15 times along with 35 helpers for 50 points in 31 games for the silver medalist Hurricanes.

McTavish, Stillman, and Wright were all members of Team Ontario who earned silver at the 2019 Canada Winter Games.  Wright, who was just recently granted exceptional player status as a 2004-born player for the 2019 OHL Priority Selection, was captain of that team.

The awards were presented at the OHL Cup Showcase Tournament Banquet for the ninth straight year recognizing the achievements of the top minor midget aged players from across Ontario.  The awards are presented annually to honour the minor midget players who best exemplify outstanding ability and the qualities of sportsmanship and leadership as voted by the minor hockey coaches, managers and organizations of each respective league.

Past Award Winners:
ALLIANCE Player of the Year:
2019 – Deni Goure, Chatham-Kent Cyclones
2018 – Matthew Maggio, Sun County Panthers
2017 – Ryan Suzuki, London Jr. Knights
2016 – Owen Lalonde, Windsor Jr. Spitfires
2015 – Nick Suzuki, London Jr. Knights
2014 – Anthony Salinitri, Windsor Jr. Spitfires
2013 – Travis Konecny, Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs
2012 – Jared McCann, London Jr. Knights Gold
2011 – Bo Horvat, Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs
GTHL Player of the Year:
2019 – Shane Wright, Don Mills Flyers
2018 – Jamie Drysdale, Toronto Marlboros
2017 – Nick Porco, Vaughan Kings
2016 – Ryan Merkley, Toronto Jr. Canadiens
2015 – Ryan McLeod, Toronto Marlboros
2014 – Adam Mascherin, Vaughan Kings
2013 – Dylan Strome, Toronto Marlboros
2012 – Connor McDavid, Toronto Marlboros
2011 – Nick Ritchie, Toronto Marlboros

HEO Player of the Year:
2019 – Mason McTavish, Pembroke Lumber Kings
2018 – Josh Barnes, Cornwall Colts
2017 – Alexandre Hogue, Cumberland Grads U18
2016 – Paul Larabie, Nepean Raiders
2015 – Gabriel Vilardi, CIH Academy
2014 – William Bitten, Ottawa Jr. 67’s
2013 – Andrew Peski, Ottawa Jr. 67’s
2012 – Andrew Abou-Assaly, Ottawa Jr. 67’s
2011 – Nicholas Baptiste, Ottawa Senators
HNO Player of the Year:
2019 – Jack Michaelis, Thunder Bay Kings
2018 – Michael Stubbs, Thunder Bay Kings
2017 – Christian Cicigoi, Thunder Bay Kings
2016 – Quintin Loon-Stewardson, Thunder Bay Kings
2015 – Kyle Auger, Thunder Bay Kings
2014 – Brad Belisle, Thunder Bay Kings
2013 – Zach Grzelewski, Thunder Bay Kings
2012 – Bryce Martyn, Thunder Bay Kings
2011 – Nolan Nicholas, Thunder Bay Kings

NOHA Player of the Year:
2019 – Chase Stillman, Sudbury Minor Midget Wolves
2018 – Pacey Schlueting, North Bay Trappers
2017 – Camaryn Baber, Soo Midget Greyhounds
2016 – Damien Giroux, Sudbury Minor Midget Wolves
2015 – Cayse Ton, New Liskeard Cubs
2014 – Zach Dorval, Soo Thunder
2013 – Blake Speers, Soo Thunder
2012 – Michael Amadio, Sault Ste. Marie North Stars
2011 – Ryan Kujawinski, Sudbury Minor Midget Wolves

OMHA ETA Player of the Year:
2019 – Brenden Sirizzotti, Whitby Wildcats
2018 – Quinton Byfield, York Simcoe Express
2017 – Alex Newhook, York Simcoe Express
2016 – Aidan Dudas, North Central Predators
2015 – Brady Gilmour, Quinte Red Devils
2014 – Chris Paquette, Greater Kingston Jr Frontenacs

OMHA SCTA Player of the Year:
2019 – Lawson Sherk, Halton Hurricanes
2018 – Cameron Tolnai, Oakville Rangers
2017 – Matthew Dunsmoor, Guelph Jr. Gryphons
2016 – Adam McMaster, Niagara North Stars
2015 – Liam Stevens, Hamilton Jr. Bulldogs
2014 – Rylee St Onge, Niagara North Stars
*prior to 2014 there was a single OMHA Player of the Year award recipient

Past OMHA Players of the Year:
2013 – Matt Spencer, Oakville Rangers*
2012 – Nik Coric, York Simcoe Express*
2011 – Alex Yuill, Quinte Red Devils*

For more information please visit www.ohlcup.ca.

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Ontario Hockey Federation Announces Exceptional Player Status for Shane Wright

Press Release

Cambridge, ON – The Ontario Hockey Federation today announced the results of the review by Hockey Canada in consideration of the application by Shane Wright, determining that the player is to be granted “exceptional player” status and therefore is eligible for the Ontario Hockey League Priority Selection on Saturday April 6, 2019.

The process was administered by the Ontario Hockey Federation with a Hockey Canada Special Evaluation Panel assembled to evaluate Wright’s hockey and academic documentation and to assess his level of maturity in reaching their decision. 

“Having administered this process since 2005 with John Tavares, Aaron Ekblad, Connor McDavid and Sean Day, I am continuously amazed by the well-rounded nature of those granted exceptional status,” said OHF Executive Director Phillip McKee. “His constant success both in the classroom and on the ice has demonstrated that Shane Wright is well deserving to be among those who have been granted status in the past.”

Born January 5, 2004, the 15-year-old Wright is a 6’, 183-pound forward who plays for the Don Mills Flyers Minor Midget AAA team, where he scored 66 goals and 84 assists for 150 points in 72 games with the GTHL team.  The Flyers currently sit atop the Minor Midget Rankings for the 2019 OHL Cup powered by Under Armour, securing their position in the tournament scheduled for March 12-18. Wright also captained Team Ontario to a silver medal at the 2019 Canada Winter Games, scoring 6 goals and 6 assists for 12 points in six games.

“This has been a goal of mine for quite some time and I am excited to take on this challenge,” said Wright. “There are many people that I would like to thank including my parents, my sister, my extended family, coaches, teachers and most importantly my teammates.”

Wright becomes just the fifth player to be granted “exceptional player” status in the Ontario Hockey League, following John Tavares (Toronto Marlboros, 2005), whose application formed the modern Exceptional Player process, defenceman Aaron Ekblad (Sun County Panthers, 2011), forward Connor McDavid (Toronto Marlboros, 2012), and defenceman Sean Day (Detroit Compuware, 2013).  The trio of Tavares, Ekblad, and McDavid were all chosen first overall in the OHL Priority Selection and later first overall in the NHL Draft.

Wright will continue his exciting season with the 2019 OHL Cup powered by Under Armour and the U16 OHL Gold Cup which is the evaluation event for the National Under 17 Development Camp.