New York’s Jimmy Warrick named named Most Valuable Player; Cape Cod Islanders win host of awards
FRISCO, TX – The North American 3 Eastern Hockey League (NA3EHL) has announced its award winners for the 2015-16 season, which include: Most Valuable Player, Forward of the Year, Defenseman of the Year, Goaltender of the Year, Rookie of the Year, Coach of the Year, General Manager of the Year and Organization of the Year, along with its NA3EHL All-Star Teams, All-Rookie Team, Community Service, Leadership and Academic Award winners as voted by the league’s coaches and general managers, based upon performance during the 2015-16 regular season.
2015-16 Most Valuable Player and Forward of the Year: Jimmy Warrick, New York Aviators
New York Aviators forward Jimmy Warrick, 20, led the NA3EHL in scoring this season 99 points (39 goals, 60 assists) in 44 games played. The native of Chicago, IL, also led the league with a +70 rating. He was named the NA3EHL Forward of the Month in September and finished the regular season recording at least a point in 20 of his final 21 games. Warrick also had 29 multi-point games. He also played on the NA3EHL West Division prospects team that competed in the NA3HL Showcase in December. Warrick will play NCAA Division III hockey next season at Aurora University.
2015-16 Defenseman of the Year: Eric Szeker, Cape Cod Islanders
Cape Cod defenseman Eric Szeker, 20, had a tremendous year leading his Islanders to the East Division regular season and playoff titles and a spot in the NA3EHL Championship Finals. The native of Allentown, NJ, led the entire league in scoring for defensemen with 50 points in 42 games played. Szeker also committed to play NCAA Division III hockey during the season at St. Olaf College in the MIAC, where he will be a freshman next season. Szeker also played for the NA3EHL East Division prospects team at the NA3HL Showcase this season.
2015-16 Goaltender of the Year: Stephen Mundinger, New York Aviators
New York Aviators goalie Stephen Mundinger, 20, had a memorable season, which included seeing plenty of pucks some his way during the season. The 6’8/220 lbs. goalie from Smithtown, NY, led the NA3EHL in several statistical categories, including saves (1,353), minutes played (2,062) and save percentage (93.6%). He was 2nd in wins with 24 on the season and also ranked in the top 6 in goals against average and shutouts. Most memorable however, was his commitment to play NCAA Division I hockey earlier this month at the University of Maine next season.
2015-16 Rookie of the Year: Ryan Flanagan, Wilkes-Barre Miners
Wilkes-Barre Miners rookie forward Ryan Flanagan, 18, had an incredible rookie season, earning many a scouting interest from the higher levels. The forward from Yatesville, PA, set the league on fire with 74 points in just 37 games played this season, which included 43 goals, 31 assists and a +33 rating. His 74 points was 29 points higher than the next teammate on the roster and easily led his club in scoring. His 43 goals was tops for all players in the NA3EHL this season. Flanagan also had a great showing for the NA3EHL West Division team at the NA3HL Showcase, where he recorded five points in three games.
2015-16 Coach of the Year: Jay Punsky, Cape Cod Islanders
With a 34-8-2 record, the Cape Cod Islanders behind head coach Jay Punsky, not only won the NA3EHL’s East Division during the regular season, but also won the East Division Playoff title. The Islanders gave the Jersey Shore Wildcats a run for their money in the NA3EHL Championship Finals, losing two close games by identical 5-4 scores. Between November 7th and January 30th, the Islander put together a league-best 17-game winning streak. It was an incredible improvement for the Islanders, who had just 19 wins a year ago during the 2014-15 season.
2015-16 General Manager of the Year: Dan Hodge, Cape Cod Islanders
A 15-win improvement, East Division regular season and playoff titles on the ice and a host of college commitments and organizational improvements earned Dan Hodge the General Manager of the Year Award. Hodge took a step aside after coaching the Islanders last season and let Jay Punsky take the reigns this season and the move paid off. It allowed Hodge more time in the front office to focus on improving the Islanders as a whole, getting them out in the community and allow him more time to help advance his players. The team also improved their media presence off the ice with a well-run website and regular social media updates.
2015-16 Organization of the Year: Cape Cod Islanders
The Islanders turnaround this season to the East Division titles in the regular season and post-season and a trip to the NA3EHL Championship Finals, along with their five college commitments to date earned them the organization of the year. That included two players on the All-NA3EHL 1st Team, the NA3EHL Coach of the Year and the NA3EHL General Manager of the Year. The Islanders have also invested in their future, creating an 18U program that will begin play in 2016-17 and have been in preliminary talks with several youth leagues in the area about creating a program that encompasses both boys and girls programs.
2015-16 Academic Achievement Award: Antonio Martiniello, Skylands Kings
Antonio is a senior at Don Bosco Preparatory High School. He is enrolled in Honors courses in Italian, World Literature and Anatomy. He is also studying Psychology and Philosophy, as well as, taking additional classes in Finance and Business. He currently carries a 3.8-weighted GPA. Additionally, Antonio is a member of Engineering Club and Speak Out Club. He is able to accomplish all this while playing in 42 games for the Kings this year and recording 13 points.
2015-16 Community Service Award: Dylan Jenkins, Lockport Express
Dylan's billet family that he stays with has a son (Andy) with Down’s syndrome. Dylan has taken him under his wing and calls him his brother, which includes activities like taking him places, playing with him and volunteers with the group that Andy belongs to, the Challenger Sports Group. Dylan also attended every single community event that the Express took past in this season, which included volunteering his time with church groups, veterans groups, events for handicapped children and local learn-to-skate programs.
2015-16 Leadership Award: Alex O’Dowd, Northeast Generals
Alex started as an assistant Captain and then was promoted to Captain because of his amazing work ethic. He missed one practice and one game the entire 2015-16 season. He missed those two times because he had surgery to repair a hernia, but was right back out on the ice the following week. Nobody brought more intensity or passion to the Generals on a day in and day out basis. On the ice, O’Dowd had a tremendous season, recording 33 points in 43 games played, which ranked 2nd in team scoring.
2015-16 All-NA3EHL 1st Team
Forward: Daniel Backstrom, New York Aviators
Forward: Chuck Costello, Cape Cod Islanders
Forward: Jimmy Warrick, New York Aviators
Defense: Brian Glover, New England Stars
Defense: Eric Szeker, Cape Cod Islanders
Goalie: Stephen Mundinger, New York Aviators
2015-16 All-NA3EHL 2nd Team
Forward: Jared Karas, Jersey Shore Wildcats
Forward: Kevin Perry, Northeast Generals
Forward: Dominic Sacco, New York Aviators
Defense: Scott Hansen, Jersey Shore Wildcats
Defense: Raymond Rowe, Syracuse Stampede
Goalie: Trevor Trudeau, Northeast Generals
2015-16 NA3EHL All-Rookie Team
Forward: Ryan Flanagan, Wilkes-Barre Miners
Forward: Kevin Perry, Northeast Generals
Forward: Dylan Plsek, Jersey Shore Wildcats
Defense: Marcus McCall, Jersey Shore Wildcats
Defense: Walker Hamilton, L/A Fighting Spirit
Goalie: Brandon Daigle, Maine Wild
About the NA3EHL
The primary mission of the NA3EHL, which is managed organizationally by the North American Hockey League (NAHL), is to provide a structured developmental environment for student-athletes at the Tier III junior level, who have the ability and the aspirations to play at the collegiate level. The common goal is to produce athletes that are committed to excellence in academics as well as athletics. By providing a high level of competition, the players will be given the resources to contribute and succeed at the next level of hockey and education. The NA3EHL will join the NA3HL for the 2016-17 season.
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