Oshawa Generals players honoured in OHL Coach’s Poll; now up 2-1 in playoff series vs Barrie

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Published April 3, 2024 at 9:52 am

Jacob Oster earned some love from teammate Rasmus Kumpulainen last week and from the coaches poll this week, sweeping three categories including Most Improved Player. Photo Goodall Media

The end of the Oshawa Generals’ 12-game winning streak came at the worst time – the opening of the 2024 playoffs at home against the eighth-seeded Barrie Colts.

But the Generals bounced back from that disappointing 4-2 loss to win game two at the Tribute Communities Centre in a nailbiter and took back home ice with a 5-1 thumping of Barrie Tuesday night at Sadlon Arena, with five different players figuring in the scoring.

The team also earned some positive news this week with the release of the annual coach’s poll, which has the Generals named in a league-high 17 of 20 categories, with nine different players included in the poll, which honours the top three vote-getters in each conference.

The lineup was led by Jacob Oster, who was first in three different votes (Most Improved, Best Puckhandling Goaltender, Best Shootout Goaltender) while rugged defenceman Connor Punnett earned firsts for Hardest Shot and Best Bodychecker. Forward Luke Torrance and defenceman Ben Danford each appeared in three different sections, with Danford getting enough first place votes to win the Best Defensive Defenceman category.

Top scorer Calum Ritchie was the coaches’ favourite for Best Playmaker.

The London Knights led all Western Conference teams with eight players in the poll, while the Kitchener Rangers featured seven players, with blueliner Matthew Andonovski matching Oster’s mark with three category wins (Best Body Checker, Best Penalty Killer, Defensive Defenceman).

Each team submits one nominee per category, and coaches then vote for the top three players for each category within their conference. Players receive five points for a first place vote, three points for a second place vote, and one point for a third place vote.  Clubs are not permitted to vote for players from their own team.

Game four in the Oshawa-Barrie series goes Thursday, with the Generals having an opportunity to go up 3-1 in the best-of-seven series heading home to the Tribute Centre Friday night.

 

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