SUMMERSIDE – It was a night of celebration for the P.E.I. Irving Oil Bantam AAA Hockey League here at Credit Union Place recently.
Over 200 players, coaches, managers and parents attended the league’s annual awards dinner.
Roger Ahern of Summerside served as the master of ceremonies while O’Leary native and Charlottetown resident George Matthews, the original radio play-by-play announcer for the Columbus Blue Jackets, was the guest speaker. Matthews entertained those in attendance as he spoke about his experience working in the National Hockey League.
Irving Oil was once again recognized for its continued support of bantam hockey in the Atlantic provinces. Kevin Bouchey, on behalf of Irving Oil, congratulated everyone on a successful regular season. Irving Oil has sponsored bantam AAA hockey for 23 years, making it the longest-running sponsorship in Canada.
Most valuable player
Brodie MacArthur of the Summerside Capitals was named the league’s most valuable player.
Many factors go into choosing a most valuable player, and for most teams this involves performance and commitment in the dressing room, at practices and during the games. It involves determined play, commitment to the team concept and being a team player, which are all attributes of MacArthur.
In 30 regular-season games, MacArthur recorded a league-high 83 points – 34 goals and 49 assists.
The Capitals were also recognized as the regular-season-champion Capitals, who posted a record of 25-3-2 (won-lost-tied).
The top forward award goes to the player who best combines play-making ability and a never-say-die winning attitude. This year’s recipient, Isaac Knox of the O’Leary-based Western Maroons, is described as a leading offensive threat who knows his defensive responsibilities.
The nominees for top defenceman showed great defensive skill as well as how a defenceman’s offensive skills added to the success of their teams.
This year’s top defenceman is Chris McQuaid of the Charlottetown Abbies.
The Jeffrey F. White Award for the league’s most valuable goaltender is given in remembrance of Jeff White, a goalie who died in a motor vehicle accident after his first year of bantam AAA hockey. The award, which went to the Maroons’ Luke Oliver, was put up by Jeff’s parents, Gordie and Andrea White.
Most sportsmanlike player
The most sportsmanlike player best exemplifies fair play and sportsmanlike behaviour. The winner of this award shows you can play hard, but also play in a sportsmanlike way.
Cameron Roberts of the Mid-Isle Matrix was this year’s recipient.
Most improved player
The Maroons’ Connor Morrissey, who improved consistently throughout the year, was announced as the most improved player.
Rookie of the year
The rookie of the year goes to a first-year player in the league who is in his first or second year of bantam eligibility. There were a large number of candidates for this award, which goes to a player who demonstrates excellence in the sport, skill and team commitment.
Thomas Casey of the Abbies took home the award.
Hard hat awards
A hard hat award was presented to a member of each team.
Every team has an individual that shows up at practice, at games and always puts forth their best effort. It is an individual who has a positive attitude, is supportive of fellow teammates, is respectful to his coaches, teammates, opponents and is a hard worker with a never-say-die attitude.
The hard hat recipients were:
Kings County Kings - Lucas MacAulay.
Pownal Red Devils - Brodie MacMillan.
Charlottetown Abbies - Chris McQuaid.
Sherwood Falcons - Cale Pierce.
Mid-Isle Matrix - Ryan Boswall.
Summerside Capitals - Tyson Arsenault.
Western Maroons - Jacob Arsenault.
P.E.I. Bantam AAA Hockey League all-stars:
Goaltender – Luke Oliver, Western Maroons.
Defenceman – Chris McQuaid, Charlottetown Abbies.
Defenceman – Noah Dobson, Summerside Capitals.
Forward – Brodie MacArthur, Summerside Capitals.
Forward – Isaac Knox, Western Maroons.
Forward – Taylor Read, Summerside Capitals.
Goaltender – Evan Richard, Summerside Capitals.
Defenceman – Brodie MacMillan, Pownal Red Devils.
Defenceman – Chance Pitre, Western Maroons.
Forward – Andrew Campbell, Charlottetown Abbies.
Forward – Brydon Smith, Western Maroons.
Forward – Edwin Jenkins, Kings County Kings.