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Bulldogs’ Halak named top goalie for November

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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. … The American Hockey League announced today that Jaroslav Halak of the Hamilton Bulldogs has been named the Rbk X-Pulse/AHL Goaltender of the Month for November.

The 21-year-old netminder stopped 208 of 214 shots in eight appearances, going 7-1-0 with a league-best 0.82 goals-against average, a .972 save percentage and four shutouts in November. Halak’s efforts helped the Bulldogs to a 10-2-0-1 record for the month, moving into second place in the North Division.

Halak, who allowed a total of three goals in his seven victories, recorded his first shutout of the year with 27 saves in Hamilton’s 1-0 win at Albany on Nov. 1. After stopping 42 of 43 shots in a 2-1 win at Toronto on Nov. 11, he turned in a 20-save performance to shut out Omaha on Nov. 14, and later made 28 saves in blanking league-leading Rochester on Nov. 25 and stopped all 32 Milwaukee shots on Nov. 28.

In recognition of his achievement, Halak will be presented with an etched crystal award prior to an upcoming Bulldogs home game.

The 2003 draft pick by the Montreal Canadiens is 7-3-0 in 10 outings this year and leads the league with a 1.29 GAA and .957 save percentage. In 2005-06, the native of Bratislava, Slovakia, appeared in 13 games for the Bulldogs, going 7-6-0 with a 2.29 GAA and .927 save percentage, including three shutouts. Halak has already tied Hamilton’s franchise record with seven career shutouts, needing just 23 appearances to reach the mark.

Other nominees for the Rbk X-Pulse/AHL Goaltender of the Month award include Tyler Weiman of Albany, Wade Dubielewicz of Bridgeport, Fred Brathwaite of Chicago, Steve Valiquette of Hartford, Josh Harding of Houston, Tobias Stephan of Iowa, Jason LaBarbera of Manchester, Corey Crawford of Norfolk, Marek Schwarz of Peoria, Scott Munroe of Philadelphia, Jean-Marc Pelletier of Rochester, Karri Ramo of Springfield, Ty Conklin of Syracuse, Jean-Francois Racine of Toronto and Jeff Deslauriers of Wilkes-Barre/Scranton.