SPRINGFIELD, Mass. … As the 2007-08 American Hockey League regular season concluded today, Chicago Wolves forward Jason Krog captured both the John B. Sollenberger Trophy as the leading scorer in the American Hockey League and the Willie Marshall Award as the AHL’s leading goal scorer for the 2007-08 season.
Krog becomes just the third player in the AHL’s 72-year history to lead the league in goals, assists and points in the same season, joining Doug Gibson (Rochester, 1974-75) and Paul Gardner (Binghamton, 1984-85). A First Team AHL All-Star at center and the winner of the Les Cunningham Award as the AHL’s most valuable player, Krog finished with 39 goals, 73 assists and 112 points while skating in all 80 games for Chicago, which finished with the best record in the Western Conference (53-22-2-3, 111 points).
The AHL’s leading-scorer trophy was originally named after Wally Kilrea, who held the AHL’s single-season scoring record when the award was instituted in 1947-48. That year, Carl Liscombe broke Kilrea’s record, and the award was renamed in his honor. In 1955, the AHL Board of Governors voted to name the trophy after John B. Sollenberger, a long-time contributor to the league as manager and president of the Hershey Bears and former Chairman of the AHL Board of Governors. Previous winners of the John B. Sollenberger Trophy include Fred Glover (1957, ’60), Willie Marshall (1958), Bill Sweeney (1961, ’62, ’63), Don Blackburn (1972), Paul Gardner (1985, ’86), Bruce Boudreau (1988), Peter White (1995, ’97, ’98), Derek Armstrong (2001), Jason Spezza (2005) and Darren Haydar (2007).
The AHL’s goal-scoring award was established in 2004 to honor Willie Marshall, the AHL’s all-time leader in goals, assists, points and games played. During his 20-year AHL playing career, Marshall won three Calder Cup championships (1955, 1958, 1959) and one scoring title – in 1957-58 when he recorded a career-best 104 points. Marshall is also the AHL’s all-time leader in postseason scoring with 119 points in 112 Calder Cup Playoff games.
Jeff Hamilton (2004), Mike Cammalleri (2005), Donald MacLean (2006), Denis Hamel (2006) and Brett Sterling (2007) were the first winners of the Willie Marshall Award. Other previous yearly goal-scoring leaders include Bryan Hextall (1937), Lou Trudel (1942, ’45), Fred Glover (1951), Dunc Fisher (1958), Jimmy Anderson (1961, ’64), Yvon Lambert (1973), Gordie Clark (1980), Paul Gardner (1985, ’86), Jody Gage (1988) and Brad Smyth (1996, 2001).
Currently in its 72nd season of play, the AHL continues to serve as the top development league for all 30 National Hockey League teams. More than 83 percent of today’s NHL players are American Hockey League graduates, and more than 6 million fans have attended AHL games across North America in each of the past six seasons. Sixteen clubs will continue to vie for the league’s coveted championship trophy when the 2008 Calder Cup Playoffs get underway on Wednesday night.