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Nelson Leafs wrap up season with Awards Banquet

From left, Nelson Leafs major award winners include, Keenan Crossman, Kaleb Comishin, Emery Neilson, Kalem Hanlon, Michael LeNoury, David Sanchez, Captain Jack Karran and Sean Campbell. — Submitted photo

The Nelson Leafs Hockey Club held its annual year-end banquet at the Adventure Hotel, and just like he did all season long, team captain Jack Karran led the walk to the trophy podium.

The Grande Prairie native topped all players with four awards — Most Popular Player (as voted by players), Leading Scorer and the Most Valuable Player for the season.

Karran’s leadership abilities continued into the playoff rounds and also earned him the trophy as the Most Valuable Player in the Playoffs.

Other awards included:

  • Alternate Captain David Sanchez (#21) from Fahler, AB, was recognized as the season’s Most Improved Player.
  • Alternate Captain Logan Wullum (#12), from neighbouring Creston, was recognized as the Most Spirited Player for the second year in a row.
  • Alternate Captain Michael Le Noury (#3) from Vernon earned three awards this season. Le Noury was identified as the winner of the Citizenship Award for service to the community and the President’s Award, as selected by the coaching staff. The President’s Award is presented to the player who exemplifies integrity both on and off the ice, exhibits character as a player and is an example to his teammates for how the game should be played.
  • Le Noury, along with Trail native and rookie Keenan Crossman (#9), were jointly recognized with the award for Dedication to both Hockey and Education.
  • Alternate Captain and Nelson native Kaleb Comishin (#7) was recognized as the e
  • Alternate Captain David Sanchez (#21) from Fahler, Alberta was recognized as the season’s Most Improved Player.
  • Alternate Captain Logan Wullum (#12), from neighbouring Creston, was recognized as the Most Spirited Player for the second year in a row.
  • Alternate Captain Michael Le Noury (#3) from Vernon earned three awards this
  • season. Mike was identified as the winner of the Citizenship Award for service to the community and the President’s Award, as selected by the coaching staff. The
  • President’s Award is presented to the player who exemplifies integrity both on and off the ice, exhibits character as a player and is an example to his teammates for how the game should be played.
  • Le Noury, along with Trail native and rookie Keenan Crossman (#9), were jointly recognized with the award for Dedication to both Hockey and Education.
  • Alternate Captain and Nelson native Kaleb Comishin (#7) was recognized as the team’s Castlegar native Sean Campbell (#18) was identified as the Unsung Hero on the team.
  • The trophy as the Most Sportsmanlike player was given to Leafs’ rookie Emery Neilson (#10). Emery hails from Edmonton.
  • Rookie of the Year honours went to Calgary native Kalem Hanlon (#6).

Despite being knocked out in the Murdoch Division Final by Beaver Valley in six games, the season was a success on the ice as the Leafs captured the KIJHL Murdoch Regular Season title for the second consecutive year.

The reason for the early exit could be attributed to the Leafs losing three key cogs in the lineup due to injury — Michael Le Noury, Logan Wullum, and David Sanchez, all three alternative team captains.

The Leafs also received these individual awards, recognition from the KIJHL was previously bestowed on goalie Caiden Kreitz as the top goalie for having the best save percentage in the entire league. Head Coach Mario DiBella was recognized by the KIJHL as the Coach of the Year in the Neil Murdoch Division. This is a particularly significant award as the selection is made by all of the Division coaches.

In addition to the award winners selected by the coaching staff, two awards are bestowed by the Board of Directors. The title as the Most Dedicated Volunteer was conferred this year on Nick Toner. Generally the first to arrive and the last to leave, Toner helps with the setup and takedown on game days and never misses a chance to cheer on his Leafs.

With the 2018-2019 season the Board instituted a new honour. In instituting this award the Board felt it necessary to honour an individual whose contributions have gone unnoticed in the past. The “Leafs” hockey club dates back to the 1930’s.

By whatever measure is used Nelson has a long and storied hockey history. The Board is very aware that a real drawback with this type of citation is that in the eight plus decades the team has been in operation there are numerous persons who could be chosen for this honour.

Sadly, the past contributions of some have long gone unnoticed and others may have been lost to time.

The Distinguished Service Award will be given annually to an individual “For Long-time Dedication, Service to and Support of the Nelson Leafs.” The inaugural winner of this accolade is Linda Lussier.

For many years Linda volunteered countless hours toward the operation of the hockey club. We want to thank Linda as well as the many others before her for their dedications to help make the Leafs what they are today for the Nelson community and area.

The Leafs who age out of the Junior hockey ranks this year are Jack Karran, Michael Le Noury, Logan Wullum and Caiden Kreitz. The Leafs wish these fine young men all the best in their future endeavours.

Leaf president Corey Viala and Executive member Gioconda Maida present Linda Lussier with the inaugural "For Long-time Dedication, Service to and Support of the Nelson Leafs" award during the banquet at the Adventure Hotel. — Submitted photo

Nick Toner receives Most Dedicated Volunteer award from Leaf president Corey Viala. — Submitted photo

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