CALGARY, Alberta – The Canadian Junior Hockey League announced today the five finalists for the 2014 Top Goaltender Award. The award will recognize the most outstanding goaltender in the CJHL based on individual performance during the regular season.
The five finalists for the Top Goaltender honour represent the BCHL, NOJHL, MJHL, AJHL and SJHL as listed below:
SJHL – Kale Thomson, Yorkton Terriers (45 GP, 31 W – 11 L – 3 SOL – 1.89 GAA – .934 S% – 8 SO)
30 wins is a very good season for any team, with 5 of the league's 12 clubs passing that milestone this season. Terrier goalie Kale Thomson managed 31 wins on his individual record. Thomson was 31-11-3, while leading the Terriers to the league's top regular season record and 1st overall playoff seed. Not only that, Thomson set the SJHL's single season record with 8 shutouts, to go along with his 1.89 GAA and .934 save percentage.
AJHL – Tanner Jaillet, Fort McMurray Oil Barons (43 GP, 30 W – 8 L – 4 SOL – 2.01 GAA – .933 S% – 6 SO)
Tanner Jaillet of the Fort McMurray Oil Barons is the winner of the 2013-2014 AJHL Top Goaltender Award. Tanner opened the 2013-2014 season with 10 consecutive wins, and 13 games without a regulation loss. He is tied for 1st overall with a .933 save percentage and 2nd amongst all league goaltenders with a 2.01 GAA. Jaillet also recorded a league leading 6 shutouts. Tanner Jaillet (Red Deer, AB) was selected as the Player of the Game nine times in the regular season. He also received the honour of being AJHL Player of the Month and AJHL Player of the Week in September 2013. The CJHL selected Jaillet as the 1st Star of the Month for September 2013 in recognition of the goaltender’s remarkable start to the season. Tanner was also a finalist for the 2013-2014 AJHL MVP Award. The 20 year old goaltender is in his third season with the Fort McMurray Oil Barons and has committed to the University of Denver. He becomes the fifth Oil Barons goaltender to receive the Top Goaltender Award.
MJHL – Braeden Ostepchuk, Selkirk Steelers (46 GP, 37 W – 8 L – 2.00 GAA – .932 S% – 6 SO)
Braeden Ostepchuk had an amazing impact on the MJHL this year. He led all starting goaltenders in several categories including GAA (2.00), Save Percentage (0.932), Wins (37), Shots (1,323), Minutes Played (2,703) and Shutouts (6). With his goaltending partner, the Steelers had 12 shutouts this season establishing a new single season league record. Braeden was also selected by the coaches of the league as the MJHL rep for CJHL Player of the Year. He is in the process of choosing a NCAA scholarship. He has a tremendous SAT score of 1920 and in high school graduated with a 95% average. He is gifted in Math and Sciences as well as Languages.
BCHL – Jeff Smith, Powell River Kings (34 GP, 20 W – 10 L – 1 T – 2.25 GAA – .923 S% – 3 SO)
With the third-least amount of goals against in the BCHL this season, the Powell River Kings relied on solid team defence and top-notch goaltending, especially from starter Jeff Smith. After getting one period of action in for the Kings last season, Smith finished the 2013-14 season with the best goals-against average in the league at 2.25. He had a record of 20-10-1 and a save percentage of .923 which was good enough for second in the league. His three shutouts tied him for second in the league. Smith, from Maple Ridge, BC, won ten of his first 11 starts, including seven straight to begin the year, setting the Kings up nicely for the rest of the season. Smith won four straight starts at the end of the year, including a double-overtime win over the Bulldogs in which he stopped 36 of 37 shots and was named BCHL Player of the Week for the last week of the regular season. The six-foot-two, 205-pound Smith has committed to play at UMass-Lowell for the 2014-15 season.
NOJHL – Joel Horodziejczyk, Soo Thunderbirds (33 GP, 29 W – 2 L – 1 T – 1.72 GAA – .935 S% – 4 SO)
Joel Horodziejczyk who hails from Sudbury, Ontario was named a first team NOJHL All-Star in net. He finished the regular season having had a tremendous 2013-14 campaign helping backstop his team to the league’s regular season crown as well as aiding his team’s effort to earn the nod as the No. 1 ranked squad in the CJHL. He did not have a loss in his final 27 regular season starts posting an impressive 26-0-1-0 record in that span. Joel led all NOJHL goaltenders in goals-against average and save percentage at 1.72 and .935 respectively while going 29-2-1-0 overall. He played more minutes than any goalkeeper in the league at just over 1,992. He was tied for the league-lead in shutouts with four and represented the NOJHL at the CJHL Prospects game, the Canada East evaluation camp, the Central Canada Challenge Cup and the Summer Select Showcase. He was the winning goaltender when CJHL East won the President’s Cup CJHL Prospects Games title.
Congratulations to the following honourable mentions for the CJHL Top Goaltender Award:
- Kevin Entmaa, Aurora Tigers – OJHL
- Shawn Ouellet, Sherbrooke Cougars – LHJAAAQ
- Guilluam Therien, Hawkesbury Hawks – CCHL
- Clint Windsor, Miramichi Timberwolves – MHL
- Eric Mann, Thunder Bay North Stars – SIJHL
The Canadian Junior Hockey League recognizes the best Junior A talent from across all 10 Junior A leagues with a suite of national awards. The CJHL awards include Most Valuable Player, Top Forward, Top Defenceman, Top Goaltender and Rookie of the Year. Every Junior A league in the CJHL has submitted a nominee for each award and the winner will be chosen from among those 10 national nominees. The announcement of the award winners will take place during the week of May 5thâ?9th.