Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins defenseman Noah Welch has been voted a starter for the PlanetUSA All-Star Team, and right wing Jonathan Filewich has been named to the Canadian All-Star Team for the 2007 RBK Hockey AHL All-Star Classic, which will take place Jan. 28 and 29 at the Ricoh Coliseum in Toronto.
Fan balloting on www.theahl.com, which ran from Dec. 11-Jan. 7, determined the all-star starters, while a committee of AHL coaches selected the remaining All-Stars. All 27 AHL clubs are represented on the final rosters.
Welch, 24, will be making his second consecutive start for the PlanetUSA squad, after also being voted a starter for the 2006 even held in Winnipeg.
The native of Brighton, Mass., has recorded 17 points (5+12) in 18 games with the AHL Penguins this season, and carries a four-game point streak (2+6) into this week’s action.
The 6-4, 212 pound blueliner has also appeared in 18 games with the Pittsburgh Penguins this season, recording two points (1+1) and 20 penalty minutes.
Last season Welch, recorded 29 points (9+20) in 77 games with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, and added four points (1+3) in five games with the NHL Penguins. He was drafted by Pittsburgh in the second round (54th overall) of the 2001 NHL Entry Draft.
Welch is the first Penguins player to be named a starter in two AHL All-Star Games.
Filewich, 22, will be taking part in the All-Star festivities for the first time. The second-year pro from Sherwood Park, Alberta, currently leads the Penguins with 16 goals and 33 points, while appearing in all 36 of the team’s games.
The 6-2, 205 pound forward ranked fifth on the team during the 2005-06 regular season with 36 points and second with 22 goals. He then went on to lead the Penguins with six goals in the postseason, and finished second on the team with 10 points.
Filewich was drafted by Pittsburgh in the third round (70th overall) of the 2003 NHL Entry Draft by Pittsburgh.
The 2007 Rbk Hockey AHL All-Star Classic will take place at Ricoh Coliseum in Toronto, home of the AHL’s Marlies. The event features the 2007 CCM AHL All-Star Skills Competition on Sunday, Jan. 28 (7:00 ET) and the 2007 AHL All-Star Game on Monday, Jan. 29 (7:00 ET), and will be televised live on Rogers Sportsnet in Canada and on a network of regional broadcast partners in the United States.