Thunder Bay, Ont. – The award winners as well as honorable mentions are listed below
Forward of the Month – Bryce Benfield, Dryden GM Ice Dogs
It was a slow start to the season for Benfield as he didn’t make it onto the scoring sheet in 3 September games. Once the calendar turned over Benfield came alive scoring 15 points in just 8 games. His first points of the season came on October 7, in a 4 assist effort against Fort Frances. He would add a goal and 2 assists the following night for a 7 point weekend. Benfield was no stranger to those big nights adding a playmaker against league leading Kam River at the SIJHL showcase and securing a hat trick later in the month. The Ice Dogs forward was also a mainstay on the powerplay with 4 of his 6 goals coming with the man advantage. The cherry on top for Bryce was a hat trick and 2 assists against UW-Superior on the 2nd night of the showcase. Benfield’s great bounce back in October earns him Forward of the Month.
Honorable Mention: Ryland Maier, Dryden GM Ice Dogs: Edison Weeks, Thunder Bay North Stars
Defenceman of the Month – Dylan Jouppi, Wisconsin Lumberjacks
Joupii tied the lead for points by a D-man at 10 in the month of October with just 9 games played. Most of his production came through assists as the Lumberjacks blueliner had no trouble distributing the puck with helpers. Big games for Dylan included two playmakers, one against Fort Frances and the other included an assist on the overtime winning goal against Thunder Bay. Jouppi has been a mainstay at a position the Lumberjacks have had a lot of turnover, seeing time on the powerplay, penalty kill, and 3 on 3 in overtime. Jouppi’s play on both ends of the ice in all situations captures him Defenceman of the Month.
Honorable Mention: Tyler Decoff, Sioux Lookout Bombers; Jack Cook, Kam River Fighting Walleye
Goalie of the Month – Jack Osmond, Red Lake Miners
It is no easy task to mind the net for a team with very few returning players but Osmond did an admirable job for the Miners. Jack led the SIJHL in save percentage among goalies who played at least 180 minutes with a mark of .932. He was also tied with two others for the lead in shutouts with 1. A 4-3 record may not look impressive at first glance but the Miners only won games with Osmond in the net and in those 7 tilts Jack faced an average of over 35 shots per game. After not playing in September Osmond has made a strong case to be the guy in net moving forward for the Miners, and earns the nod for Goalie of the Month.
Honorable mention: Jake Manners, Sioux Lookout Bombers; Eric Clark, Dryden GM Ice Dogs
Rookie of the Month – Jacob Lamoureux, Red Lake Miners
Lamoureux picked up the second player of the month award for the Miners. The ‘04 from Alberta finished second among rookies in points with 10 in 10 games. What set Lamoureux apart was how he got those points. The Miners looked to him to consistently put the puck in the net and he did not disappoint with 8 goals in the month. The young forward also had a knack for showing up in tough contests with hat tricks against 2 of the top 3 teams, Kam River and Sioux Lookout. In addition to big performances, Jacob was also good in the clutch, with the game winning goal in 3 of Red Lake’s 4 wins in October. Lamoureux separates himself as the league’s Rookie of the Month.
Honorable Mention: Dillon Phillips, Wisconsin Lumberjacks; Blake Burke, Sioux Lookout Bombers