Trio of goaltenders named NOJHL Eastlink TV 3 Stars of the week

SUDBURY, Ont. – The Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League announced Monday that goaltenders David Bowen of the Rayside-Balfour Canadians, Joe Vrbetic of Powassan Voodoos and Shane Brancato of the Soo Eagles have been named its Eastlink TV 3 Stars of the Week for the period ending March 17.

DAVID BOWEN, (G) RAYSIDE-BALFOUR CANADIANS – The Rayside-Balfour stopper has been all but unbeatable so far through two playoff outings vs. the Soo Eagles.

The 18-year-old from Markham, Ont., turned aside 31 of the 32 shots he faced in a narrow 2-1 triumph over the Michigan Soo Saturday then posted his first NOJHL postseason shutout Sunday with a 35-save performance in a tightly-contested 1-0 victory over the same Eagles side.

Bowen enters Game 3 of their West Division semifinal with a stingy 0.50 goals-against average and an equally impressive .985 save percentage to lead all NOJHL playoff netminders to date.

JOE VRBETIC, (G) POWASSAN VOODOOS – In making his league postseason debut Friday, Vrbetic had a 35-save shutout as Powassan took the series opener in Kirkland Lake.

The 16-year-old rookie netminder from Dunvegan, Ont., then handled 24 attempts as the Voodoos came away victorious on the road Sunday vs. the Gold Miners to go up 2-0 heading home for Game 3 Wednesday.

Through his first two league playoff contests, Vrbetic sports an average of 1.50 along with a .952 save mark.

SHANE BRANCATO, (G) SOO EAGLES – Brancato certainly did his part for the Eagles in his club’s first two outings vs. the Canadians in their West semifinal match-up.

The 19-year-old from Lake Villa, Ill., allowed only three goals against in a pair of low-scoring road setbacks in Chelmsford over the weekend wrapping making 69 stops among the 72 shots he faced.

Brancato wrapped up the time frame with a 1.50 goals-against average along with a .958 save percentage.

Eastlink TV 3 Stars

Week 1
Tyler Masternak, (G) Timmins Rock
Garret Boyonoski, (G) Blind River Beavers
Caleb Serre, (F) Blind River Beavers

Week 2
David Bowen, (G) Rayside-Balfour Canadians
Joe Vrbetic, (G) Powassan Voodoos
Shane Brancato, (G) Soo Eagles