Stingy Weekend Earns Bitsakis Central Star Honors
FRISCO, TX – Bismarck Bobcats goalie Alex Bitsakis spent Friday and Saturday stopping 60 of the 61 shots that the Austin Bruins and Aberdeen Wings sent his way; Monday the North American Hockey League rewarded his efforts with the Central Division Star of the Week award.
Friday against the Bruins, Bitsakis collected 33 saves to backstop the Cats to their first shutout of the year: a 3-0 blanking of Austin; Saturday the Montreal, Quebec, native, turned aside 33 Aberdeen efforts for his fifth win of the 2014-15 season against just two losses.
“It’s great to be off to a solid start, and being named star of the week tells me that I’m on the right track—along with the defense—with what we’re supposed to be doing,” offered Bitsakis, who is in his first year with the Bobcats but played junior hockey last season with the Elliot Lake Bobcats of the NOJHL.
“Now it’s about continuing to work hard and improving on the young season and not taking a step back.”
After his 60-save weekend, Bitsakis now sits third in the league in both GAA (1.26) and SV% (.957).
“Alex has been very good for us all year. We played against some the best our division had to offer last weekend and he made some huge saves,” added Bobcats head coach and general manager Layne Sedevie. “I thought it was important for him to play well in back-to-back games and give everyone some much needed momentum.”
It marks the first time this season that a Bobcat has picked up the league’s weekly hardware.
Rookie defenseman Johnny Witzke also garnered honorable mention for the award after tallying his first point at the junior level Friday and leading the team with 16 hits over the weekend.
Before the Bobcats head east for their only visit of the season to Austin, Minn., to face the rival Bruins, they will be in Dickinson, ND, Tuesday for an 8:00pm exhibition game against the Minot Minotauros at the Dickinson Recreation Center.
Regular season play will then resume Friday at Riverside Arena against the Bruins at 7:00pm.
Live coverage of Friday's tilt against the first-place Bruins will begin at 6:30pm locally on SuperTalk 1270, KLXX-AM, the radio home of Bobcat Hockey, and worldwide online at NAHL.FASTHockey.com, the official web television partner of the North American Hockey League.
Though the 2014-15 season is now under way, there is still time to order season tickets for the year; fans who want to lock in their seats for the entire campaign should call the Bobcat office at 222-3300 today!