Franklin, Pinho, Cecere, and Stewart earn weekly USHL honors

CHICAGO – The United States Hockey League announced Monday the CCM and Reebok player awards for the 27th week of the 2013-14 USHL regular season.

Winners include C.J. Franklin of the Sioux Falls Stampede and Brian Pinho of the Indiana Ice, recognized as co-recipients of CCM Forward of the Week; Garrett Cecere of the Sioux Falls Stampede, selected as CCM Defenseman of the Week; and Hayden Stewart of the Indiana Ice, named Reebok Goaltender of the Week.USHL new black

C.J. Franklin, F, Sioux Falls Stampede: The Forest Lake, Minnesota native, who turned 20 earlier in the week, celebrated his birthday in a big way by scoring five goals in leading the Stampede to pair of victories. He netted two goals in a span of 1:21 during the second period of Friday’s 7-1 victory against the Sioux City Musketeers. The second goal was the 50th of his USHL career. He followed up by scoring three consecutive goals for a natural hat trick in Sunday’s 4-0 win over the Lincoln Stars. It was the second hat trick over his career with the Stampede and pushed him over the 50-point mark this season as he leads the Stampede with 51 points (22g, 29a) in 51 games. The Minnesota State University, Mankato commit has netted six goals over his last three games.

Brian Pinho, F, Indiana Ice: The 18-year-old produced six points (5g, 1a) in helping the Ice win three games during the week and extend their streak to seven consecutive victories. He assisted on the game-winner in Friday’s 5-0 victory against the Muskegon Lumberjacks. The North Andover, Massachusetts native then scored three consecutive goals in a span of 6:23 during the second period of Saturday’s 4-3 win against the Youngstown Phantoms. The natural hat trick was his first three-goal game in the USHL. Pinho, a Providence College commit, then tallied two more goals, including his second game-winner of the weekend, during Sunday’s 5-2 victory over Muskegon. His second goal was his 25th of the season and 50th point over 54 games. The 2013 NHL Draft pick of the Washington Capitals has recorded 22 points (13g, 9a) over his last 14 contests.

Garrett Cecere, D, Sioux Falls Stampede: The 19-year-old defenseman dished out six assists to help the Stampede capture a pair of weekend victories. He recorded three assists in Friday’s 7-1 win against the Sioux City Musketeers, setting a USHL career high for points in one game. The West Des Moines, Iowa native then matched that effort with three more assists in Sunday’s 5-0 win against the Lincoln Stars. He was also part of a defensive unit that allowed just one goal over the weekend and successfully killed off all eight power play chances by the opposition. The Colorado College commit has recorded 20 points (2g, 18a) and a plus-16 rating in 20 games since being acquired by the Stampede in January. His 35 total points (3g, 32a) are the fifth most among USHL defensemen.

Hayden Stewart, G, Indiana Ice: The 19-year-old posted a 1.00 goals-against-average and .950 save percentage over two starts to earn a pair of victories for the Ice. He turned aside all 15 shots he faced in Friday’s 5-0 win against the Muskegon Lumberjacks, which was his fourth shutout over a span of eight starts. The Rockford, Illinois native then made 23 saves in Sunday’s 5-2 victory over Muskegon, improving his record to 12-0-0 since being acquired by the Ice in January. The 12-game winning streak set a new team record for consecutive wins by a goaltender (Jon Gillies won 10 straight in 2010-11). Stewart, a Cornell University commit, has posted an 18-6-1 overall record this season and currently ranks second among USHL goaltenders in both GAA (1.98) and SV% (.924).

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