SPRINGFIELD, Mass. … San Diego Gulls forward Andrew Poturalski and Bakersfield Condors forward Cooper Marody have won the American Hockey League’s two prestigious offensive awards for the 2020-21 season.
A fifth-year pro from Williamsville, N.Y., Poturalski finished the 2020-21 season with nine goals and 34 assists for 43 points, skating in all 44 games for San Diego following an injury-filled 2019-20 campaign. Poturalski signed with the Anaheim Ducks on July 2, 2019, after a career year in 2018-19 in which he earned Second Team AHL All-Star honors and won the Jack Butterfield Trophy as the MVP of the Calder Cup Playoffs. Poturalski has skated in 299 career regular-season AHL contests with San Diego and Charlotte, totaling 77 goals and 149 assists for 226 points.
Marody led the AHL with 21 goals and tied for third in overall scoring with 36 points in 39 games for Bakersfield this season, his third pro campaign. A native of Brighton, Mich., Marody was an AHL All-Star as a rookie in 2018-19 and has registered 46 goals and 74 assists for 120 points in 130 career AHL contests with the Condors. Originally selected by Philadelphia in the sixth round of the 2015 NHL Draft, Marody was acquired by Edmonton on Mar. 21, 2018.
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), Alexandre Giroux (2009), Keith Aucoin (2010), Brandon Pirri (2013), Travis Morin (2014), Chris Bourque (2016), Kenny Agostino (2017), Chris Terry (2018), Carter Verhaeghe (2019) and Sam Anas (2020).
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; winners include Mike Cammalleri (2005), Alexandre Giroux (2009, ’10), Colin McDonald (2011), Cory Conacher (2012), Tyler Johnson (2013), Frank Vatrano (2016), Valentin Zykov (2018), Carter Verhaeghe (2019), Alex Barre-Boulet (2019) and Gerry Mayhew (2020). 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).
In operation since 1936, the American Hockey League continues to serve as the top development league for all 31 National Hockey League teams. Nearly 90 percent of all players competing in the NHL are AHL graduates, and through the years the American Hockey League has been home to more than 100 honored members of the Hockey Hall of Fame.