Portland Winterhawks defenseman Seth Jones was awarded the Jim Piggott Memorial Trophy as Western Hockey League Rookie of the Year at the league’s annual awards ceremony today in Calgary, Alberta. In addition, the organization was also named the WHL Scholastic Team of the Year, and Brendan Leipsic and Nic Petan accepted the Bob Clarke Trophy as the league’s leading scorers.
Jones posted 56 points in 61 games in the regular season, first among the league’s rookie defensemen. He’s also helped lead the Winterhawks to their third straight WHL championship series with 13 points in 15 playoff games. Jones is NHL Central Scouting’s top-rated North American skater for the 2013 Entry Draft, and led the United States to a gold medal at the World Junior Championship.
“Seth came in and exceeded our expectations right from Day One this season, and we’re thrilled he’s been named WHL Rookie of the Year,” said Winterhawks Acting Head Coach Travis Green. “Seth has been a defensive pillar for us, while also playing a significant role offensively. We’re proud his hard work this season has been recognized with this award.”
He is the first Winterhawk to win the award since Braydon Coburn in 2001-02, and joins Marian Hossa (1997-98), Todd Robinson (1994-95), Dennis Holland (1986-87, one of two winners), Dave Waldie (1985-86, one of three winners) and Keith Brown (1977-78, one of two winners) as Winterhawks who have been named Rookie of the Year.
The Winterhawks also took home the WHL’s Scholastic Team of the Year Award, given to the team that achieves the highest overall academic performance during the regular season.
“We’re incredibly proud to be named the Scholastic Team of the Year, and much of the credit goes to our tireless education adviser, Sue Johnson,” said Green. “As an organization we’ve made education a top priority, and Sue works with the players daily to make sure they’re achieving their educational goals. I know the players and their families are very grateful for her hard work, and this award is great recognition for the culture we’ve established.”
In addition, Brendan Leipsic and Nic Petan were awarded the Bob Clarke Trophy as the league’s leading scorers at the awards ceremony. Leipsic and Petan each had 120 points this season to rank first in the WHL. It was the third time two players and shared the league lead in points, and the first time a pair of teammates had accomplished the feat.
Group ticket packages for the 2013 WHL Playoffs are now available. Contact the Winterhawks today at 236-HAWK or email firstname.lastname@example.org for details.