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AHL names monthly award winners for March

Photos: JustSports Photography, Texas Stars, Jonathan Kozub

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. … The American Hockey League announced today that Hershey Bears defenseman Christian Djoos, Stockton Heat forward Mark Jankowski and Charlotte Checkers goaltender Tom McCollum have been selected as the league’s award winners for March.

JustSports Photography
JustSports Photography

Djoos, the CCM/AHL Player of the Month, skated in 13 games for Hershey during March and recorded three goals and 13 assists for 16 points to go along with a plus-10 rating.

Djoos began the month by recording a goal and an assist in the Bears’ 5-1 win at Syracuse on Mar. 3, and he matched a personal best with three assists in a 7-1 victory at Binghamton on Mar. 11. Djoos had a memorable night vs. Hartford on Mar. 17, capping the first two-goal game and the first four-point effort of his career by scoring the winning goal in overtime for a 4-3 Hershey victory. He notched two assists in a 3-1 win at Bridgeport on Mar. 19, and he ran his scoring streak to six games – matching another career high – when he assisted on the winning goal in the Bears’ 2-1 win at St. John’s on Mar. 26.

Djoos is currently tied for second among all AHL defensemen in scoring with 55 points (12 goals, 43 assists) in 62 games with Hershey this season. The 22-year-old native of Gothenburg, Sweden, tallied eight goals and 14 assists in 62 games as a rookie with the Bears last year, and helped the club reach the Calder Cup Finals with nine points in 21 postseason contests. Djoos was selected by the Washington Capitals in the seventh round of the 2012 NHL Entry Draft.

Photo: Texas Stars
Photo: Texas Stars

Jankowski, the CCM/AHL Rookie of the Month, notched nine goals and seven assists for 16 points and recorded a plus-12 rating in 13 games for Stockton in March.

Jankowski tallied two goals and an assist in the Heat’s 6-2 win over Ontario on Mar. 1 and registered a goal and an assist in a 4-2 win over San Jose on Mar. 4. He scored twice and recorded a game-high nine shots on goal in a 4-0 win over Bakersfield on Mar. 8, and picked up a goal and an assist to help the Heat past San Jose, 7-4, on Mar. 17. His power-play goal at Texas on Mar. 24 sparked a four-goal rally and lifted Stockton over the Stars, 5-4, and he closed out the month with an assist in a 3-2 win at San Antonio on Mar. 31.

Jankowski, 22, leads all AHL rookies in goals (26) and ranks second in points (51) in 59 games played for Stockton this season. The native of St. Catharines, Ont., represented the Heat at the 2017 AHL All-Star Classic and made his National Hockey League debut with Calgary on Nov. 28, 2016, in a game against the New York Islanders. Jankowski was a first-round choice (21st overall) by the Flames in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft and won a national championship at Providence College in 2015.

Photo: Jonathan Kozub
Photo: Jonathan Kozub

McCollum, the CCM/AHL Goaltender of the Month, made his Checkers debut last month and was a 7-1-1 in nine appearances, allowing 17 goals on 260 shots for a 1.88 goals-against average and a .935 save percentage.

Reassigned to Charlotte by the Calgary Flames on Mar. 8, McCollum got his first AHL start of the season on Mar. 10 and turned aside 49 shots in the Checkers’ 4-1 victory at Manitoba. He made 24 saves in a 3-2 overtime victory over Ontario on Mar. 18, and posted a 23-save shutout as the Checkers blanked Iowa, 1-0, on Mar. 21. McCollum extended his winning streak to six games by stopping 30 shots in a 3-2 shootout win vs. Chicago on Mar. 25, and he posted 30 saves in a 4-1 win at Cleveland on Mar. 30.

McCollum signed as a free agent with Calgary on Oct. 16, 2016, after seven seasons in the Detroit Red Wings organization that included a Calder Cup championship with Grand Rapids in 2013. This year, the native of Amherst, N.Y., has a record of 8-2-1 in 11 games between Charlotte and Stockton with a 2.06 goals-against average and a .928 save percentage. Over 237 career AHL games, McCollum is 111-93-17 with a 2.75 GAA, a .906 save percentage and eight shutouts. A first-round pick by Detroit (30th overall) in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft, McCollum has played three career NHL games with the Red Wings.

Each monthly award winner will be presented with an etched crystal award prior to an upcoming home game in recognition of his achievement.