AJHL Commissioner Ryan Bartoshyk presented three prestigious League Awards prior to tonight's game between the Pontiacs and the Fort McMurray Oil Barons in Bonnyville, AB.
The presentations included League MVP, Outstanding Defenceman and Coach of the Year. (Photo Credit to: Bonnyville Nouvelle)
Most Valuable Player- Alberta Old Time Hockey Players Trophy
Bobby McMann (Bonnyville Pontiacs) is the 2015-2016 Alberta Junior Hockey League MVP and recipient of the Alberta Old Time Hockey Players Trophy.
The 19 year-old Pontiac Assistant Captain is currently tied for the lead in team scoring with 61 points (34G, 27A). McMann has scored the most game winning goals of all AJHL players (9) and the second most goals (34) with 3 games remaining. McMann has recorded 21 multi-point games in the regular season and an average of 1.4 points per game. The 3rd year Pontiac was awarded as the Viterra AJHL Star of the Game 11 times this year.
Bobby McMann won a Gold Medal as a member of Team Canada West at the 2015 World Junior A Challenge. The Centre from Wainwright, Alberta has committed to Colgate University of the NCAA Division I.
The last Pontiac to win the AJHL MVP Award was Edmonton Oilers centre Mark Letestu in 2005-2006.
Outstanding Defenceman- W.G. (Bill) Scott Memorial Trophy
Brinson Pasichnuk (Bonnyville Pontiacs) is the recipient of the W.G. (Bill) Scott Memorial Trophy as Outstanding Defenceman. Brinson leads all AJHL defencemen in scoring with 61 points (18G, 43A) and is tied with AJHL MVP, Bobby McMann, as the team scoring leader.
Pasichnuk (Bonnyville, AB) has averaged 1.2 points per game through the regular season and recorded 18 multi-point games. The 18 year-old has scored 5 game winning goals, the most of all AJHL defenceman.
Brinson Pasichnuk was identified in the NHL Central Scouting Mid-Term Rankings and represented Team West at the 2016 CJHL Prospects Game. He also won a Gold Medal with Team Canada West at the 2015 World Junior A Challenge. Brinson was recognized as the Viterra AJHL Star of the Game four times, the Canalta Hotels AJHL Player of the Week in October 2015, and the Alberta Ford Dealers AJHL Player of the Month for October 2015.
The second year Pontiac serves as an Assistant Captain for his hometown Pontiacs. Brinson and his brother Steenn recently committed to the NCAA Division I Arizona State University Sun Devils.
The Outstanding Defenceman award is given annually to the defensive player who demonstrates the greatest all-round ability in the position throughout the season.
Coach of the Year
Rick Swan (Bonnyville Pontiacs) is the 2015-2016 AJHL Coach of the Year as voted by the Alberta Junior Hockey League General Managers and Coaches. Swan is in his third season as Head Coach of the Bonnyville Pontiacs and during that time has posted a regular season record of 93-58-26 while guiding the team to the playoffs in all three years.
The Pontiacs were eliminated in Round Two of the 2014 playoffs, advanced to the North Division Final in 2015, and have the potential to finish the regular season as high as 2nd in the AJHL North Division in 2016. Through Swan’s tenure, 17 Pontiacs players have committed College and Universities across North America.
The Bonnyville Pontiacs promoted Rick Swan to Head Coach and General Manager in April 2013. Swan spent the 2012-2013 season as the Pontiacs Associate Coach and Assistant General Manager after joining the club from the Knights of Columbus Midget AAA club in Edmonton where he had been the Head Coach since 2008-2009. In 2009, Swan won the Glen Sather Trophy as the AMHL Coach of the Year.
The 2015-2016 Pontiacs have already captured three League Awards – League MVP, Outstanding Defenceman and Coach of the Year. The Pontiacs are on track to set a new Franchise Record for Most Wins (38) and have tied the Franchise Record for Most Points in a Single Season (83).
Rick Swan was a finalist for the 2015 AJHL Coach of the Year Award. The last Pontiac Coach to win the award was Chad Mercier in 2010-2011, who recently rejoined the organization as Co-Chair of the 2016 World Junior A Challenge in Bonnyville, AB.