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3 Stars of the Week: McNeill paces Hogs, Motte extends goal streak

by Emerald Gao / Chicago Blackhawks

On Mondays, the Blackhawks Blog will highlight players who stood out for their minor-league, junior, college, or European teams in the previous week’s action. All prospect/system stats will be updated weekly throughout the 2015-16 season.

(Photo courtesy Rockford IceHogs)

1st Star: RW Mark McNeill, Rockford IceHogs (AHL)
The Line: 2GP, 2G, 1A

McNeill paced the IceHogs last week with two goals and an assist in two outings. The 2011 first-round pick tallied his 11th of the season in Friday’s 4-3 overtime loss in Milwaukee, then posted a goal and an assist in Sunday’s 4-2 victory over Grand rapids. McNeill now shares the team lead in goals (12) and shares second with 26 points in 36 games this season.

(Daryl Marshke/Michigan Photography)

2nd Star: RW Tyler Motte, University of Michigan (BIG10)
The Line: 2GP, 2G, 1A

Motte extended his career-best goal streak—a modern record for Michigan—to 11 games by opening the scoring in both games against Wisconsin last weekend, as the Wolverines gained five out of a possible six points with a 4-1 win on Friday and a 5-4 shootout victory on Saturday. The 2013 fourth-round pick continues to lead the NCAA with 27 goals in 27 games this season, and his 42 points rank third on the team.

(Steve Musco/Yale Athletics)

3rd Star: C John Hayden, Yale University (ECAC)
The Line: 2GP, 2G

Hayden, a third-round pick in 2013, scored two power-play goals for Yale—including the game-winner—in a 4-2 win on Saturday, helping the Bulldogs complete a weekend sweep over Cornell and extend the team’s win streak to five games. It was the third multi-goal outing for Hayden, who now has four tallies in his last four outings and continues to pace his team with 14 this season.

Honorable mentions: LW Bryan Bickell, Rockford (AHL); C Dylan Sikura, Northeastern University (H-EAST)

Bickell got back on the scoreboard for Rockford in a big way last week, notching his first multi-goal game of the season—including the game-winner—in Sunday’s 4-2 win over Grand Rapids. Bickell became the six IceHog to reach double digits in goals (10) and now has 22 points in 22 AHL games this season.

Sikura collected a point in each of Northeastern’s three wins last week. On Monday, the 2014 sixth-round pick tallied his ninth goal of the season in a 5-1 win over Harvard to help the Huskies take third place at the annual Beanpot Tournament held amongst Boston-area colleges; he added two assists over the weekend as Northeastern swept Massachusetts and now has 20 points in 28 games this season.

Around the system:

  • Defenseman Joni Tuulola notched his ninth assist of the season for HPK in a 6-4 loss to Ilves last Wednesday... Ryan Shea, a 2015 draft pick, tallied his first point of the season (1A) for the USHL’s Youngstown Phantoms in a 5-1 win over Fargo last Friday; the blueliner has played 11 games since returning from an injury... Jake Massie scored his first goal of season for the Omaha Lancers in a 4-1 win over Cedar Rapids; the 19-year-old has five points in 29 games this season.

  • Liam Coughlin tallied his second goal of the season to help the University of Vermont secure a 3-2 win over New Hampshire; the 21-year-old freshman has nine points in 29 games... Anthony Louis opened the scoring for Miami of Ohio in a 4-1 win over Bowling Green on Friday, the team’s only outing of the week. The 2012 sixth-round pick shares second on the team with 19 points (7G, 12A) in 28 games this year... Nick Schmaltz picked up a goal and an assist for North Dakota in a 6-4 loss to Denver on Friday and now has 29 points (4G, 25A) in 24 games during his sophomore campaign.

  • Ryan Hartman collected a goal and an assist in Rockford’s win on Sunday and continues to lead the IceHogs with 27 points; with 12 goal, he’s one away from matching his career high set last season... Ville Pokka recorded a pair of assists for Rockford on Sunday, becoming the first player to hit the 20-helper mark this season... Garret Ross registered an assist in both of Rockford’s games last week and now has 18 points in 45 games this season... After missing nearly three months with an injury, forward Kyle Baun returned to the lineup last week, and on Sunday he picked up his first career AHL point with an assist on Bickell’s game-winner against Grand Rapids.
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