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Boutin named top goalie for December

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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. … The American Hockey League announced today that Jonathan Boutin of the Springfield Falcons has been named the Rbk X-Pulse/AHL Goaltender of the Month for December.

The 21-year-old netminder was 5-1-1 in nine appearances last month, with a 1.77 goals-against average, a .942 save percentage and one shutout as the Falcons moved up into a tie for second place in the AHL’s tight Atlantic Division.

Boutin earned his first victory of the season on Dec. 1, stopping 33 shots in a 3-2 overtime win at Manchester. The next night, he made 29 saves and was 6-for-8 in the shootout as Springfield edged Providence, 3-2. Boutin turned in a 32-save shutout at Worcester on Dec. 9, and made a season-high 36 saves in a 3-1 win over Bridgeport on Dec. 30.

In recognition of his achievement, Boutin will be presented with an etched crystal award prior to an upcoming Falcons home game. A third-round draft pick by the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2003, Boutin is in his second professional season in 2006-07. In 12 games with Springfield this year, he is 5-3-1 with a 2.13 GAA and a .930 save percentage. The native of Granby, Que., was 8-12-2 in 22 AHL appearances for the Falcons last season.

Other nominees for the Rbk X-Pulse/AHL Goaltender of the Month award include Justin Peters of Albany, Fred Brathwaite of Chicago, Al Montoya of Hartford, Josh Harding of Houston, Frank Doyle of Lowell, Jason LaBarbera of Manchester, Karl Goehring of Milwaukee, Corey Crawford of Norfolk, Marek Schwarz of Peoria, Dov Grumet-Morris of Portland, Jordan Sigalet of Providence, Craig Anderson of Rochester, Josh Tordjman of San Antonio, Tomas Popperle of Syracuse, Andrew Penner of Wilkes-Barre/Scranton and Thomas Greiss of Worcester.