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Otters’ Pelech named Top High School Student and Scholastic Player of Year

The Ontario Hockey League today announced that Adam Pelech of the Erie Otters is this year’s recipient of both the Bobby Smith Trophy as Scholastic Player of the Year as well as the Ivan Tennant Memorial Award as the top High School Student Athlete.

Pelech, a 17-year-old from Toronto, ON, is a Grade 12 student at McDowell Senior High School in Erie, PA, where he received a 95% average with a full course load including Algebra, Computer Applications, English, Introduction to Business, Physical Education, and Sports and Entertainment Studies.  Pelech becomes the Otters’ second Bobby Smith Trophy winner following Brad Boyes who received the honour in 2000.  He is the organization’s first Ivan Tennant Memorial Award winner but follows in the footsteps of his older brother Matt who was the award’s first recipient in 2005 as a member of the Sarnia Sting.  Pelech becomes the first player to receive both awards in the same season. 

“It’s awesome, it’s an award that my brother won when he was playing in the league so it’s cool that I have won it as well,” said Pelech.  “Both academics and on-ice performance go hand in hand and it’s great to be recognized for both.”

Pelech has completed his second season with the Otters and is among the top OHL defencemen eligible for the 2011 NHL Entry Draft.  He recorded 20 points in 44 games this season for the Otters and represented Canada earning a bronze medal at the recent IIHF World Under-18 Championship where he was an Alternate Captain.

“Adam Pelech shows his leadership by conduct,” said Otters General Manager Sherry Bassin.  “He is truly a leader on the ice and a leader in the classroom.  He does it quietly and shows by his conduct that goals can be accomplished if you stick with it.  We are proud of his accomplishments in the classroom and on the ice.  His dedication to being the best is why he will have a long career in the National Hockey League.”

Each year the Bobby Smith Trophy is presented to the OHL Scholastic Player of the year who best combines high standards of play and academic excellence.  The trophy is in honour of Bobby Smith, former Ottawa 67’s star who exhibited a standard of excellence in both of these areas.  The Ivan Tennant Memorial Award is given to the Top Academic High School Player and is named in honour of Ivan Tennant, who spent a lifetime combining hockey and education.  He was the Kitchener Rangers’ Education Consultant for 20 years and a key figure on the OHL’s Education Consultant’s Committee. 

Former winners of the Bobby Smith Trophy include NHL stars Dustin Brown who was a three-time award winner with Guelph from 2001-03, Steven Stamkos (Sarnia 2006-07), and Matt Duchene (Brampton 2008-09).  The two most recent recipients include Erik Gudbranson and last year’s winner Dougie Hamilton of the Niagara IceDogs who was later named the CHL’s Scholastic Player of the Year.  Hamilton also won the Ivan Tennant Memorial Award in 2010 one year after his brother Freddie Hamilton.  Goaltender Andrew D’Agostini of the Peterborough Petes was last year’s winner. 

Following Pelech in consideration for the Bobby Smith Award was runner-up Matt Murray of the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds, and Daniel Altshuller of the Oshawa Generals.  Chris Bigras of the Owen Sound Attack and Spencer Turcotte of the Guelph Storm were both runner-ups for the Ivan Tennant Memorial Award. 

Pelech will be formally presented with his awards at the OHL’s annual Awards Ceremony June 5 at the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto.  He will also be the OHL’s nominee for the CHL’s Scholastic Player of the Year award.

All 20 of the OHL’s member clubs provide nominees for each award with the Bobby Smith Trophy nominees representing the 2011-12 OHL Scholastic Team.

 

Bobby Smith Award Winner- Adam Pelech, Erie Otters

Nominees:

Barrie

Ekblad, Aaron

Innisdale

Belleville

Gaunce, Brendan

Quinte SS

Brampton

Auld, Justin

Univeristy of Toronto

Erie

Pelech, Adam

McDowell SHS

Guelph

Finn, Matt

Our Lady of Lourdes CS

Kingston

Blight, Braydon

Holy Cross

Kitchener

Pederson, Brent

Eastwood Collegiate

London

Welychka, Brett

St. Thomas Aquinas

Mississauga

Duhaime, Ryan

Philip Pocock CSS

Niagara

Hamilton, Freddie

Brock University

Oshawa

Altshuller, Daniel

Henry Street HS

Ottawa

Monahan, Sean

Hillcrest HS

Owen Sound

Bigras, Chris

West Hill SS

Peterborough

Ritchie, Nicholas

Thomas A Stewart SS

Plymouth

Wilson, Tom

Plymouth HS

Saginaw

Kea, Justin

Saginaw Heritage HS

Sarnia

Chiarlitti, Nathan

University of Guelph

Sault

Murray, Matt

Superior Heights

Sudbury

Schutt, Samuel

Lockerby

Windsor

Clarke, Michael

St. Anne’s HS

 

Ivan Tennant Winner- Adam Pelech, Erie Otters

 

Nominees:

 

Barrie

 

 

 

Ekblad, Aaron

 

 

 

Innisdale SS

Belleville

Simmonds, Scott

Quinte Secondary

Brampton

Robinson, Brandon

Turner Fenton HS

Erie

Pelech, Adam

McDowell SH

Guelph Turcotte, Spencer Our Lady of Lourdes

Kingston

Smith, Jacob

Holy Cross Catholic

Kitchener

Pedersen, Brent

Eastwood Collegiate

London

Athanasiou, Andreas

Oakridge SS

Mississauga

Martin, Spencer

Philip Pocock

Niagara

Graham, Jesse

Governor Simcoe SS

Oshawa

Altshuller, Daniel

Henry Street HS

Ottawa

Nishi, Michael

Hillcrest HS

Owen Sound

Bigras, Chris

West Hill SS

Peterborough

Varga, Steven

Thomas A. Stewart SS

Plymouth

Wilson, Tom

Plymouth HS

Saginaw

Kea, Justin

Heritage HS

Sarnia

Latta, Nick

Northern Collegiate

Sault

Nurse, Darnell

St. Mary’s High School

Sudbury

Schutt, Samuel

Lockerby

Windsor

Johnson, Ben

St. Anne’s HS

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