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Fata Named Sher-Wood AHL Player of the Week

by Staff Writer / New York Rangers

The American Hockey League announced today that Hartford Wolf Pack center Rico Fata has been named the Sher-Wood AHL Player of the Week for the period ending Sunday, March 10, 2002. In four games last week, Fata recorded five goals and four assists for nine points, 30 shots on goal and a plus-5 rating, as the Wolf Pack extended their points streak to 17 games (10-0-5-2) with three wins and an overtime loss, moving into first place in the Eastern Conference.

Fata, the sixth overall pick in the 1998 NHL Entry Draft, caught fire against the division rival Springfield Falcons in consecutive games, recording two goals and an assist in a 6-4 win on Wednesday, and notching his first hat trick of the season in a 5-3 road victory on Friday. He closed out the week with an assist in Saturday’s 3-2 overtime setback to Rochester and two helpers in Sunday’s 6-1 triumph over Albany. In recognition of his achievement, Fata will receive a Sher-Wood leather jacket, presented to him during an on-ice ceremony prior to an upcoming game. In addition, Sher-Wood will donate five travel bags to the West Hartford Youth Hockey Association of West Hartford, Conn., in Fata’s name.

With his performance on the week, Fata, a member of the 2001 Calder Cup champion Saint John Flames, has established professional career highs for goals (30), assists (31) and points (61), and is tied for ninth in the AHL’s scoring race. The 22-year-old native of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., also ranks third in the league with a plus-25 rating. In 197 career AHL matches, Fata has tallied 82 goals and 89 assists for 171 points. He has also skated in 33 NHL contests for the New York Rangers and Calgary, including six this season.

Other players nominated for Sher-Wood AHL Player of the Week include Bridgeport left wing Pat Leahy, Chicago right wing Rob Brown, Cleveland center Mike Craig, Hamilton defenseman Sven Butenschon, Houston center Cory Larose, Lowell right wing Jaroslav Svoboda, Milwaukee center Martin Bartek, Norfolk goaltender Michael Leighton, Providence left wing Ivan Huml, Rochester right wing Jaroslav Kristek, Springfield left wing Ramzi Abid and Syracuse center Sean Pronger.

As Sher-Wood AHL Player of the Week, Fata is scheduled to participate in an on-line chat at the AHL’s official web site,, on Thursday, March 14, at 1:00 PM ET.
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