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Three Stars of the Week: April 1-7, 2013

by Emerald Gao / Chicago Blackhawks
(Greg Hamil/Rockford IceHogs)

1st Star: LW Rostislav Olesz, Rockford (AHL)
The Line: 4GP, 4G, 2A, +6 plus/minus

Olesz, who was named the CCM/AHL Player of the Week, spent most of the season rehabbing from an injury, but has sparked Rockford’s offense since rejoining the team in late March. Olesz registered a three-game point streak last week and logged two consecutive outings with two goals and an assist (April 5 at Milwaukee; April 6 at Peoria), including the game-winner in those two contests. Olesz also collected a helper on April 7, bringing his season total to 13 points (6G, 7A) in nine appearances.

(Bryan Heim/Portland Winterhawks)

2nd Star: G Mac Carruth, Portland (WHL)
The Line: 3GP, 3-0-0, 1 SO

Carruth started all of Portland’s playoff games last week, as the top-seeded Winterhawks finished off the Everett Silvertips with a commanding Game 6 victory and took a 2-0 lead over the Spokane Chiefs in their second-round matchup. Carruth allowed just three goals in three games and pitched a 27-save shutout in Game 2 on April 6. Overall, Carruth made 77 saves on 80 shots, recording a .963 save percentage. Games 3 and 4 will be played in Spokane on Tuesday and Wednesday.

(Britta Lewis/Waterloo Blackhawks)

3rd Star: C Vincent Hinostroza (USHL)
The Line: 4GP, 2G, 2A, +2

Hinostroza racked up four points (2G, 2A) over a three-game point streak, including a two-point outing (1G, 1A) in a 7-1 win over Des Moines. The Bartlett, Ill., native had collected just two points in six previous games after missing six weeks due to an arm injury, but returned to form in time to help Waterloo clinch a berth in the USHL playoffs.

Honorable Mention: C Brandon Pirri, Rockford (AHL); G Henrik Karlsson, Rockford (AHL)

Pirri notched points and assists in all four games for the IceHogs last week, including a three-point outing on April 6 at Peoria (1G, 2A) and a two-helper effort the next night at home. The Blackhawks’ second-round draft pick in 2009, who turns 22 on April 10, leads Rockford with 74 points (20G, 44A) in 71 games.

Karlsson started in net for three of Rockford’s four games and won all three decisions, making 85 saves on 93 shots for a 2.67 goals-against average and a .914 save percentage. Karlsson has a 10-4-0 record in 15 games since joining the organization earlier this season.

Around the system:

  • The IceHogs made huge strides toward clinching a playoff spot, winning all four contests last week, with a number of players pitching in with big performances. Captain Martin St. Pierre registered three goals, two assists and a +4 rating in four appearances and has a three-game goal streak. St. Pierre logged three points (1G, 2A) in a 5-4 victory at Peoria on April 6... Jimmy Hayes is also enjoying a three-game point streak, collecting four points (1G, 3A) and a +1 rating in that span. Hayes ranks third on the team with 23 goals this season and is tied for fourth with 43 points.

  • Rockford’s top defensive pairing made their mark in the team’s four-game win streak: Adam Clendening tallied four points (1G, 3A) and a +7 rating, contributing two assists on April 5 and scoring his seventh goal of the season the next night... Alternate captain Ryan Stanton netted his second and third goals of the season in a rare two-game scoring streak (April 2-5) and collected two assists for a four-point week.

  • Goalie Carter Hutton won his only start of the week, making 20 saves on 21 shots in a 4-1 result over Peoria at home... Joakim Nordstrom recorded his first professional point with an assist on April 7... 2011 draft picks Phillip Danault and Mark McNeill made their AHL debuts this season; both were held without a point in their first three appearances for Rockford.
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