Former T-Bird Ortega, Colorado College freshman Leclerc net weekly NCHC honors
The Bauer National Collegiate Hockey Conference (NCHC) Players of the Week for the weeks of Dec. 16, 2016 through Jan. 1, 2017 include University of Nebraska-Omaha senior forward Austin Ortega (Offensive Player of the Week) and Colorado College freshman netminder Alex Leclerc (Goaltender of the Week).
Ortega is now a six-time NCHC Offensive Player of the Week, including three times this season, and has claimed seven career NCHC weekly honors. Leclerc is a repeat winner from the last set of weekly awards (Dec. 5-11).
OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Austin Ortega, Omaha
Ortega led Omaha to a home sweep of Lake Superior State, racking up four points in the two games while tying an NCAA career record.
In Friday’s 4-1 victory, he scored the Mavericks’ second goal, which turned out to be the game-winner, giving him 23 career game-winning goals, which ties the NCAA career mark. He also posted a plus-3 rating in the series opener. The following night, Ortega tallied three points, scoring a goal and adding two assists to help Omaha rally for a 5-3 comeback win, including assisting on the game-winner.
He finished the weekend with two goals, two assists, a plus-4 rating and 12 shots on goal, including seven in Friday’s win. Ortega now leads all NCHC players with 27 points this season.
Ortega played part of his youth career for the Colorado Thunderbirds.
GOALTENDER OF THE WEEK
Alex Leclerc, Colorado College
Leclerc continued his strong play of late, leading Colorado College to the 2016 Florida College Hockey Classic title, the Tigers’ first in-season tournament title since 2005.
The Quebec native allowed only one goal in the tournament en route to earning tournament MVP honors at the event.
On Wednesday, Leclerc stopped all 26 shots that came his way against Merrimack to pitch his first collegiate shutout in the semifinals as CC advanced with a 3-0 win. In the championship game, Leclerc made 23 saves against Cornell, while giving up only one goal, which came on the power play, as the Tigers won in overtime, 2-1.
He also backstopped CC’s penalty kill unit to go 8-for-9 in the tournament. Leclerc finished the Florida College Hockey Classic with 49 saves, a 0.50 goals-against average and a .980 save percentage.
Ortega photo/Jeff Beiermann/Omaha Athletics; Leclerc photo/Colorado College Athletics