SUDBURY – The Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League announced today that a trio of goaltenders have been named 3 Stars of the week for the period concluding Sept. 21.
Earning 3 stars honours are goaltenders Braddock Baalerud of the Abitibi Eskimos, Kevin Labelle of the Sudbury Nickel Barons and A.J. Smith of the Elliot Lake Wildcats
BRADDOCK BAALERUD, (G) ABITIBI ESKIMOS – In two starts during the week that was the 17-year-old Aurora, Ont., product was stellar in backstopping the Eskimos to a pair of one-goal victories.
Baalerud began with a 31-save performance Friday as Abitibi handed Kirkland Lake their first loss of a season, a 2-1 decision, in a neutral site affair held in Timmins.
One night later he made 36 stops as the Eskimos edged Cochrane 2-1 at Jus Jordan Arena.
For the week Baalerud posted a 1.00 goals-against average along with an impressive .975 save percentage.
KEVIN LABELLE, (G) SUDBURY NICKEL BARONS – Sudbury’s Labelle was recognized for his efforts helping the Nickel Barons pick up consecutive victories over Blind River and Sault Ste. Marie.
The 17-year-old rookie netminder turned aside 27 attempts in a 6-3 result over the Beavers Wednesday then made a whopping 48 saves Saturday as Sudbury dealt the Thunderbirds their first defeat of the campaign by a 3-2 score.
Labelle, who hails from Garson, leads all NOJHL goaltenders in wins having a gone a perfect 4-0 to start his Jr. A career.
A.J. SMITH, (G) ELLIOT LAKE WILDCATS – A long way from home, the Southlake, Texas native etched his name in the Wildcats record books Sunday night as he recorded the first shutout in franchise history, a 27-save effort in a 2-0 decision over visiting Powassan Sunday night.
Smith has come away victorious in his last two starts aiding Elliot Lake’s 3-1 start in their first season in the NOJHL.