WHL Announces Monthly Award Winners for April

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The Western Hockey League announced today that Kelowna Rockets forward Reid Gardiner has been named the WHL Player of the Month for April 2017.

Gardiner, a 21-year-old product of Humboldt, Sask., registered 25 points (13G-12A) in 12 games as the Kelowna Rockets advanced to the WHL’s Western Conference Championship for the second consecutive year before falling to the Seattle Thunderbirds in six games.

In April, the veteran right winger put forth eight multipoint performances, highlighted by an outstanding six-point effort (4G-2A) on Friday, April 14 in a 6-2 win versus Portland. Additionally, the crafty winger registered a hat trick on Sunday, April 2 in a 4-2 win at Kamloops and another four points (2G-2A) on Wednesday, April 12 in a 7-2 win at Portland.

The 5-foot-11, 198-pound overage forward collected first-star honours on two occasions during the month of April.

Acquired by the Rockets from the Prince Albert Raiders prior to the WHL Trade Deadline on January 10, Gardiner returned to the WHL from the American Hockey League’s Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins – affiliate of the NHL’s Pittsburgh Penguins – to score 37 points (18G-19A) in 28 WHL regular season contests.

Originally a first-round selection (eighth) of the Raiders at the 2011 WHL Bantam Draft, Gardiner graduates from the WHL having secured 257 points (124G-133A) over 290 career WHL regular season games, along with 37 points (20G-17A) in 31 career WHL post-season outings.

Regina Pats goaltender Tyler Brown has been named the Vaughn WHL Goaltender of the Month for April 2017.

Brown, a 20-year-old product of Winnipeg, Man., chalked up a record of 8-5 during the month of April, with a shining 2.30 goals-against average, .921 save percentage and 383 saves as the Regina Pats advanced to the WHL Championship Series presented by Rogers for the first time since 1984.

The Pats’ goaltender allowed two goals or fewer on eight occasions and stopped 30 shots or more on five occasions, including 64 saves on Tuesday, April 11 in a 5-4 overtime loss at Swift Current. Brown played a vital role as the Pats came back in seven games after trailing the Swift Current Broncos by a 3-1 margin in the second round to advance to the Eastern Conference Championship where Regina got past the Lethbridge Hurricanes in six games to advance to the 2017 WHL Championship Series presented by Rogers. On four occasions, the veteran goaltender earned second-star honours.

Brown was recognized as WHL Goaltender of the Week twice during the month of April – back-to-back for the weeks of April 16 and April 23. In total, he has been recognized with weekly honours three times this season, the other coming for the week of March 12. This is his first Vaughn WHL Goaltender of the Month honour in 2016-17.

The 6-foot-1, 178-pound goaltender finished the 2016-17 regular season with a record of 33-8-5-1, 2.64 GAA, .911 SV% and five shutouts across 50 appearances. He sat among WHL leaders in GAA (fourth), wins (T-3rd) and shutouts (T-2nd).

Through 17 post-season outings, Brown is 12-5 with a 2.13 GAA and a .926 SV%. Once gain, he is among the WHL leaders in GAA (second), save percentage (third) and wins (T-1st).

Brown was originally listed by the Regina Pats in 2014 and has since suited up in 119 career WHL regular-season games, going 61-34-7-6 with a 2.94 GAA, .908 SV% and seven shutouts. In 29 career WHL playoff games, he is 19-10 with a 2.36 GAA, .922 SV% and two shutouts.

Brown and the Regina Pats host the Seattle Thunderbirds for Games 1 and 2 of the 2017 WHL Championship Series presented by Rogers, with Game 1 scheduled for Friday, May 5 (7 p.m. MT) at the Brandt Centre.

WHL Player of the Month
September/October: Sam Steel, Regina Pats
November: Adam Brooks, Regina Pats
December: Tyler Wong, Lethbridge Hurricanes
January: Matteo Gennaro, Calgary Hitmen
February: Mathew Barzal, Seattle Thunderbirds
March: Adam Brooks, Regina Pats
April: Reid Gardiner, Kelowna Rockets

Vaughn WHL Goaltender of the Month
September/October: Logan Flodell, Saskatoon Blades
November: Carter Hart, Everett Silvertips
December: Dylan Ferguson, Kamloops Blazers
January: Rylan Toth, Seattle Thunderbirds
February: Carter Hart, Everett Silvertips
March: Michael Herringer, Kelowna Rockets
April: Tyler Brown, Regina Pats

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