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ENNIS, MANCARI EARN TEAM HONORS

by Staff Writer / Buffalo Sabres
Tyler Ennis (Heather Harvey)
The Portland Pirates announced their annual team award winners at the Creative Awards Team Award Ceremony following today’s game against the Worcester Sharks at the Cumberland County Civic Center.


Tyler Ennis and Mark Mancari were double winners.

Ennis was voted by the fans as the Most Popular Player and the PeoplesChoice Credit Union Player of the Year. The rookie forward, who was named the AHL’s Rookie of the Year and also captured MVP honors at the 2010 Time Warner Cable AHL All-Star Classic, finished the season as the League’s leading rookie scorer with 23 goals and 42 assists for 65 points in 69 games. His 65 points were the second most on the Pirates.

Mancari was selected as the Pirates Most Valuable Player, presented by Maine Medical Center. The veteran forward finished first in team scoring for a second straight season with 28 goals and 45 assists for 73 points in 74 games. His assist and point totals represent new career highs. The 24 year-old London, Ontario native also won the Allied Home Mortgage Three Star Award, presented to the player who has been recognized this season as a regular when it comes to being selected one of the game’s three stars.

Other award winners included Mike Weber, who was voted by the fans as the Unsung Hero.

Mike Kostka was selected as the Tom Ebright Award winner presented to the player who best exemplifies what it means to be a member of the Portland Pirates, as envisioned by team founder, the late Tom Ebright.

For the second straight season Jhonas Enroth won the Jack Button Memorial Award, presented annually to honor Buffalo’s top prospect. The Award is named in honor of the late Jack Button, who was a member of the Washington Capitals Hockey Department from 1979 until his death in 1996.

Mark Mancari, Nathan Gerbe (Photo: Sean Rudyk)
Joe DiPenta was chosen by his teammates as the Player’s Player Award winner. DiPenta was identified by his peers as a player they felt represents the team’s character and values.

In addition, Derek Whitmore was officially recognized as the Pirates American Specialty AHL Man of the Year Award winner and Kevin Dineen acknowledged for registering his 200th career AHL coaching victory on February 5th in Providence.

The Pirates also took the opportunity to recognize two corporate partners for their continued support.

Each season, the Pirates honor a special partner who has shown exemplary partnership and support during the year. This season, the Pirates honored Time Warner Cable as their 2010 Partner of the Year. Time Warner Cable has supported the Pirates for many years, but went above and beyond this season to help bring the 2010 AHL All-Star Classic back to Portland. In addition to their title sponsorship of the event Time Warner Cable continues to spread the excitement of Pirates hockey by televising home games throughout the season, helping to ensure that AHL hockey will be alive and well in the state of Maine for years to come.

The Pirates also recognized Ducks Unlimited for their support of the 2010 Ducks Unlimited AHL All-Star Skills Competition and presented a check to Ducks Unlimited in the amount of $1,100, which was raised through the auction of two autographed jerseys during this year’s All Star festivities. Ducks Unlimited is the world’s leader in wetlands and waterfowl conservation. Their mission is to conserve, restore and manage wetlands and associated habitats for North America’s waterfowl.

The Pirates will begin their pursuit of the 2010 Calder Cup in a best-of-seven series against the Manchester Monarchs beginning Friday, April 16th at 7 p.m. at the Cumberland County Civic Center. Click here for more info.
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