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3 Stars of the Week: April 6-12, 2015

by Emerald Gao / Chicago Blackhawks

Each Monday, the Blackhawks Blog will highlight prospects who stood out for their minor-league, junior, college, or European teams in the previous week’s action. All prospect stats will be updated weekly throughout the 2014-15 season.

(Photo courtesy Rockford IceHogs)

1st Star: RW Spencer Abbott, Rockford IceHogs (AHL)
The Line: 3GP 4G 2A

Abbott’s hot streak continued last week to help Rockford push for home ice in the playoffs, compiling four goals and two assists in three appearances. The 26-year-old led the IceHogs to a 5-3 victory over Milwaukee on Tuesday with four points (2G, 2A) in the contest, then added goals in wins over Iowa and Charlotte last weekend. Abbott has 20 points in 16 games since joining Rockford in March and leads the team with 44 points (18G, 26A) overall this season.

(Photo courtesy Rockford IceHogs)

2nd Star: G Antti Raanta, Rockford IceHogs (AHL)
The Line: 2-0-0, 1 SO

Raanta won both of his starts last week before being recalled to Chicago on Sunday. He made 22 saves on 25 shots in Rockford’s win over Milwaukee, then stopped all 25 he faced in a 2-0 blanking of Charlotte, his second shutout with the IceHogs this season. In 11 AHL games this season, the Finland native has an 8-1-1 record, with a 2.39 goals-against average and .918 save percentage.

(Photo courtesy Rockford IceHogs)

3rd Star: C Mark McNeill, Rockford IceHogs (AHL)
The Line: 4GP, 2G, 1A

McNeill tallied points in three of four games last week for the IceHogs. He scored in Iowa on Thursday before netting his 22nd goal of the season in Charlotte on Saturday; he now leads the team in goals. The 2011 first-round pick then picked up an assist in Rockford’s 4-3 loss to Charlotte on Sunday. McNeill ranks second on the team with 43 points in 60 games this season.

Honorable mentions: C Peter Regin, Rockford (AHL); C Tanner Kero, Rockford (AHL)

Regin had a big night last Tuesday playing alongside Abbott and Brandon Mashinter, picking up three helpers in Rockford’s win over Milwaukee. He also assisted on Abbot’s game-winner on Saturday in Charlotte. Regin leads the team with 30 assists and ranks fourth with 40 points this year.

Kero, signed as a free agent out of Michigan Tech, made an immediate impact in the AHL, scoring his first pro goal in his first game with the IceHogs on Thursday. The NCAA All-American tallied again in Rockford’s loss on Sunday and now has two goals in three games.

Around the system:

  • Fredrik Olofsson posted a goal and two assists in three outings with the USHL’s Chicago Steel last week. The 2014 fourth-round pick finished the regular season with a team-leading 27 goals and 60 points in 57 games; he’ll attend the University of Nebraska-Omaha in the fall.

  • Four prospects were in action at the NCAA Frozen Four in Boston last week: Luc Snuggerud took one shot on goal for Nebraska-Omaha, who were eliminated after a 4-1 loss to eventual champion Providence. The 2014 fifth-round pick finished his freshman campaign with 16 points (2G, 16A) in 39 games... North Dakota dropped a dramatic 5-3 result in the semifinal to Boston University. Luke Johnson (2012 sixth-round pick) opened the scoring for ND on the power play, and Nick Mattson (2010 sixth-round pick) notched a helper in the third period, also with the man advantage. Mattsson, a senior, finished his collegiate career with 17 goals and 61 assists in 153 appearances. Johnson concluded his sophomore campaign with 24 points in 42 games, and freshman Nick Schmaltz (2014 first-round pick) logged 26 points in 38 games.

  • Ryan Hartman picked up three assists in four games for Rockford last week and now has 35 points (13G, 22A) in 66 games this season ... Mashinter contributed a goal and an assist in two of four IceHogs tilts; he has 32 points in 67 games.

  • Carl Dahlstrom, who joined Rockford after completing his season with Linkoping in the Swedish Hockey League, notched his first AHL point with an assist in his North American debut... Keith Seabrook tallied the game-winner in Rockford’s win last Tuesday, marking his first goal with the club; he added two assists and now has five points... Kyle Cumiskey collected three helpers in three games to extend his point streak to five (6A) before being recalled by Chicago on Sunday... Stephen Johns notched a goal and an assist while compiling 15 shots on goal in four games last week.
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