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Taffe, Lovejoy Named To PlanetUSA All-Stars at 2009 AHL All-Star Classic, Presented By Charter Communications

by Staff Writer / Pittsburgh Penguins
WILKES-BARRE, PA – Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins forward Jeff Taffe and defenseman Ben Lovejoy have been named to the PlanetUSA AHL All-Star Team at the 2009 AHL All-Star Classic presented by Charter Communications, which takes place January 25 and 26 at the DCU Center in Worcester, MA.

Taffe, 27, is tied for second in the AHL with 41 points (16+25) in 31 games this season, and has already set new personal bests for assists (25) and points (41) in a season.  He was selected to play in the 2008 ALL-Star Classic in Binghamton, but was unable to participate when he was recalled by the Pittsburgh Penguins.  He also represented Springfield at the 2003 All-Star in Portland, ME.

The native of Hastings, MN tied the Penguins’ record by picking up four assists in the team’s 4-0 win at Philadelphia on December 26, and recorded his 100th AHL goal on December 27 vs. Bridgeport.  He was named the Reebok/AHL Player of the week for the period ending December 28, after recording nine points (2+7) in three games, including back-to-back four-point games against the Philadelphia Phantoms (0+4 on December 26) and the Bridgeport Sound Tigers (2+2 on December 27).

Taffe has appeared in 285 AHL contests during his seven-year career, recording 219 points (100+119).  He has recorded 62 points (27+35) in 58 games with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton during parts of two seasons.

Lovejoy, 24, is tied for the AHL lead with a plus-20 rating this season, and ranks tied for 11th in defenseman scoring with 20 points (6+14) in 34 games.  The second-year pro has already set a new career high for goals in a season (6) and tied his mark of 20 points from last season.

The native of Canaan, NH has appeared in two games with the Pittsburgh Penguins this season, going scoreless and even.  He made his NHL debut on December against the New Jersey Devils. 

Lovejoy was signed by Wilkes-Barre/Scranton to an AHL contract on June 14, 2007, and posted 20 points (2+18) in 72 games during his rookie season.  He also led the Penguins with a plus-16 rating.  He was signed by Pittsburgh as a free agent on July 14, 2008.

The 2009 AHL All-Star Classic presented by Charter Communications will feature the top young talent in the American Hockey League competing in the 2009 AHL All-Star Skills Competition on Sunday, January 25 (4:00 p.m. ET), and the 2009 AHL All-Star Game on Monday, January 26 (7:00 p.m. ET). The event will be televised nationally in the United States and Canada.
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