Photos by Hickling Images
The United States Hockey League announced the Forward, Defenseman and Goaltender of the Week for Week 14 of the 2018-19 season. Des Moines Buccaneers forward Reed Lebster and Tri-City Storm defenseman Zac Jones won their first weekly awards of their USHL careers, while Evan Fear of the Green Bay Gamblers was named Goaltender of the Week for the third time this season. Lebster recorded five points in two games last week, including a four-point performance on Thursday, Jones dished out three assists in a pair of games over the weekend and Fear recorded a 41-save shutout in Green Bay's 1-0 win in Dubuque on Saturday. The USHL is America’s only Tier 1 junior hockey league, and continues to lead the world in the advancement of Division I college hockey athletes.
2 GP: 3 goals, 2 assists, +1 rating
Lebster scored twice and dished out a pair of assists in Des Moines' 5-2 victory over the Omaha Lancers on Thursday before scoring his third goal and recording his fifth point of the weekend on Saturday against the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders. With his five-point weekend, the University of Massachusetts commit is close to averaging a point-per-game this season, as he currently has 27 points (16G, 11A) through 30 games. Those 27 points have Lebster sitting third on the Buccaneers and among the top-15 in USHL scoring. His 16 goals are good for second among all Des Moines players, while his 11 assists are good for fifth on the team. A native of Grand Rapids, MI, Lebster is in his third full USHL season and has played all 139 games of his USHL career in a Des Moines Buccaneers uniform. In those contests, he has recorded 60 points (34G, 26A). He was originally selected by Des Moines in the 12th round, 184th overall in the 2016 USHL Phase II Draft and previously played for Fox Motors (T1EHL).
2 GP: 0 goals, 3 assists, +3 rating
Jones dished out an assist on Friday in Tri-City's 3-1 win over in-state rival Lincoln and added two more helpers as the Storm extended their winning streak to three games with a 5-2 victory over the Omaha Lancers on Saturday. The rookie defenseman is now up to 17 points (2G, 15A) on the season and leads all Storm defensemen and USHL rookie blueliners with both his 15 assists and 17 points. Jones's 15 assists are tied for sixth in the league among defensemen, while his 17 points are tied for ninth in the same category. Jones has recorded at least one point in 15 of the 23 games in which he's played, and has had a pair of multi-point performances in his last 10 contests. This weekend's games marked the first USHL action for the University of Massachusetts commit since he won a gold medal with Team USA at the World Junior A Challenge, where he recorded four points (1G, 3A). He is a native of Glen Allen, VA and was listed as a C-rated skater on November's NHL Central Scouting Players to Watch List. Jones played for Selects Hockey Academy (USPHL) prior to this season, his first in the USHL.
1-0-0-0, 0.00 GAA, 1.00 SV%
In his only start of the weekend, Fear stopped all 41 shots he faced as Green Bay knocked off Eastern Conference rival Dubuque by a score of 1-0. The shutout was his second of the season and gave him two wins in his last three starts. The win also put the Quinnipiac commit over the .500 mark on the season, as he now sports an 8-7-2-0 record. He also has a .908 SV% on the year, good for fifth among all USHL goaltenders. This is Fear's third weekly award of the season, as he was also named USHL Goaltender of the Week on Nov. 22 and Dec. 10. 2018-19 marks Fear's second season playing in the USHL, as he suited up for 14 games with the Dubuque Fighting Saints during the 2016-17 campaign. A Winnetka, IL native, Fear spent time with the Springfield Jr. Blues (NAHL) and Chicago Mission (HPHL). He was taken in the fourth round, 57th overall by the Gamblers in the 2018 USHL Phase II Draft.
Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, the USHL celebrates its 17th season as the nation's only Tier I junior hockey league in 2018-19. The USHL had a record 45 players selected at the 2018 NHL Draft, more than any junior league in the world, and more than 400 players on team rosters last season committed to NCAA Division I schools, further establishing the USHL as the world’s foremost producer of junior hockey talent.