Rock’s Masternak; Thunderbirds’ Stephney; Crunch’s Wickson named NOJHL Eastlink 3 stars of the Week

SUDBURY, Ont. – The Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League announced Monday that Timmins Rock goaltender Tyler Masternak, Soo Thunderbirds forward Gage Stephney and Cochrane Crunch netminder Zach Wickson have been named its Eastlink TV 3 Stars of the Week, for the period ending Nov. 25.

TYLER MASTERNAK, (G) TIMMINS ROCK – It was a record-setting week for the 18-year-old Oshawa, Ont., product.

Friday night saw him handle all 26 shots he faced in which the Powassan Voodoos were blanked on home ice for the first time in over four years.

That victory was his sixth shutout of the season, which established a new NOJHL record for the most in one season.

Masternak then kicked out 61 of the 62 attempts he faced Saturday in a 4-1 triumph at French River to wrap-up his run with a stingy 0.50 goals-against average for the week and a .989 save percentage.

Entering league action this week he leads all league netminders with a 1.95 average and is third in save percentage at .926 while sporting a 13-2 record in his past 15 starts.

Masternak also currently tops all NOJHL goaltenders in wins with 16.

GAGE STEPHNEY, (F) SOO THUNDERBIRDS – After rejoining the Thunderbirds in late October, the 18-year-old Stephney has helped his hometown Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., side move to the top of the NOJHL’s overall standings.

Suiting up in a pair of contests during the time frame, Stephney produced five points in two of Soo victories.

He began with a goal and an assist in a home win vs. visiting Espanola Thursday then capped things off by tallying once and dishing out a pair of helpers as the Thunderbirds topped the rival Soo Eagles Sunday afternoon.

Stephney has goals and points in three straight games for the Soo.

ZACH WICKSON, (G) COCHRANE CRUNCH – Stepping in to man the nets twice for Cochrane last week, Wickson came away victorious in both appearances to aid in his club’s efforts to tighten the race for first place in the NOJHL’s East Division.

The 19-year-old from Calgary, Alta., started off with a 37-minute relief stint Friday stopping 19 of the 20 shots fired his way in a win vs. Hearst.

Wickson then handled all 37 attempts he faced Sunday to post his first league shutout, a 3-0 decision at French River helping the Crunch extend a winning streak to three.

In all he boasted a 0.62 goals-against average for the week along with a .982 save percentage.

With a 9-1 record in his past 10 starts the Cochrane keeper is third-best in the NOJHL currently in both average at 2.30 and a .928 save mark. He is also second in victories with 13.


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Eastlink TV 3 Stars

Week 1
David Campbell, (F) Powassan Voodoos
Mihali See, (F) Soo Eagles
Shayne Battler, (G) Cochrane Crunch

Week 2
Cade Herd, (F) Powassan Voodoos
Gregory Brassard, (G) Kirkland Lake Gold Miners
Brendan Young, (F) Blind River Beavers

Week 3
Joseph Benedeto, (G) Soo Eagles
Joe Vrbetic, (G) Powassan Voodoos
Steven Bellini, (D) Soo Thunderbirds

Week 4
Lucas Theriault, (F) Soo Thunderbirds
Tyler Masternak, (G) Timmins Rock
Gregory Trudeau-Paquet, (F) Kirkland Lake Gold Miners

Week 5
Thomson Phinney, (G) Blind River Beavers
Nick Smith, (F) Soo Thunderbirds
Christian Snyder, (F) Kirkland Lake Gold Miners

Week 6
Tyler Masternak, (G) Timmins Rock
Benjamin Hatanaka, (F) Rayside-Balfour Canadians
Gabriel LeBlanc, (D) Kirkland Lake Gold Miners

Week 7
Zach Wickson, (G) Cochrane Crunch
Riley Brosseau, (F) Timmins Rock
Dante Cavaliere, (D) Blind River Beavers

Week 8
Derek Seguin, (F) Timmins Rock
Matthew Bazarin, (F) Soo Thunderbirds
Connor Taylor, (F) Elliot Lake Wildcats

Week 9
Will Frustaglio, (F) French River Rapids
Joel Rainville, (G) Espanola Express
Max Griffioen, (F) Hearst Lumberjacks

Week 10
Christian Cicigoi, (G) Powassan Voodoos
Ethan Lavallee, (D) Rayside-Balfour Canadians
Philippe Daoust, (F) French River Rapids

Week 11
Riley Nadeau, (F) Blind River Beavers
Philippe Daoust, (F) French River Rapids
Levi Siau, (F) French River Rapids

Week 12
Tyler Masternak, (G) Timmins Rock
Gage Stephney, (F) Soo Thunderbirds
Zach Wickson, (G) Cochrane Crunch