Tri-City's Comrie, Topping earn WHL honors

March 20, 2014 

Americans Comrie Stop Portland

January 4, 2014 -- Tri-City Amercans goaltender Eric Comrie blocks a shot by Portland's Dominic Turgeon during Friday night's game in Kennewick. Americans' Connor Rankin defends during the play.

BOB BRAWDY — Tri-City Herald Buy Photo

The Tri-City Americans may have finished eighth in the Western Conference, but goaltender Eric Comrie did more than enough to impress the Western Hockey League brass, picking up second-team honors Thursday.

Americans captain Mitch Topping was named the Western Conference Humanitarian of the Year.

“It is exciting,” Comrie said of the honor. “Hockey is a team sport and they did a very good job of keeping things to the outside and making things easy for me. Individual awards are earned because of team play.”

Comrie, who made 60 starts this season, finished with a 26-25-4-5 record with a 2.57 goals against average and a .925 save percentage. He also had four shutouts, bringing his career total to nine — good for third all-time on the Americans list with Drew Owsley (2008-11).

Comrie ranked second in the WHL for save percentage and saves (1,849). He was third in games played and minutes played (3,523), and was sixth in goals against average.

The last goaltender to rank in the top two in save percentage and saves was Spokane’s Dustin Tokarski (2008-09).

“To say that he is deserving is an understatement,” Topping said. “Anyone who knows Eric, and knows how much effort he puts in on and off the ice, he is very deserving.”

Topping, in his final season in the WHL, won the humanitarian award for the second consecutive year. He is up for the Doug Wickenheiser Memorial Trophy, along with Moose Jaw’s Sam Fioretti. The winner will be announced at the WHL Awards Luncheon in Calgary on April 30.

“It’s definitely a huge honor for how much the guys on our team do,” Topping said. “I don’t do it for the recognition, but it’s a nice touch to wrap up the season. It would have been nice to win last year, but you can’t deny what Mr. (Cody) Sylvester did last year. I hope to win this year, but there is some stiff competition around the league.”

Topping has been involved in many charitable organizations, including Habitat for Humanity, Second Harvest, school reading programs, working with animals at the Humane Society, helping area youth learn to skate and play hockey, hospital visits, signing events, Salvation Army Kettle Drives and Special Olympics.

Topping and former teammate Justin Feser formed Making Awareness a Top Priority to Fes Out Muscular Dystrophy last season. They kept the charity alive this season and again have raised several thousand dollars.

“He really deserves that,” Comrie said of Topping. “He does so much in the community. He’s always the first guy (at an event) and the last guy to leave. His work with the MDA shows how great a person he is.”

Taylor Procyshen (2009) is the only Americans player to win the Doug Wickenheiser Memorial Trophy as WHL Humanitarian of the Year.

The Amercians open their best-of-7 playoff series Saturday with Kelowna at Prospera Place.

The Rockets won the Scotty Munro Trophy for the best regular-season record at 57-11-0-4 (118 points).

WESTERN CONFERENCE ALL-STAR TEAMS

FIRST ALL-STAR TEAM

Goaltender — Jordon Cooke (Leduc, AB), Kelowna Rockets

Defenseman — Derrick Pouliot (Weyburn, SK), Portland Winterhawks

Defenseman — Shea Theodore (Aldergrove, BC), Seattle Thunderbirds

Forward — Nicolas Petan (Delta, BC), Portland Winterhawks *

Forward — Mitch Holmberg (Sherwood Park, AB), Spokane Chiefs *

Forward — Oliver Bjorkstrand (Herning, Denmark), Portland Winterhawks

SECOND ALL-STAR TEAM

Goaltender — Eric Comrie (Edmonton, AB), Tri-City Americans

Defenseman — Damon Severson (Melville, SK), Kelowna Rockets

Defenseman — Madison Bowey (Winnipeg, MB), Kelowna Rockets

Forward — Joshua Winquist (St. Albert, AB), Everett Silvertips

Forward — Todd Fiddler (Meadow Lake, SK), Prince George Cougars

Forward — Mike Aviani (North Vancouver, BC), Spokane Chiefs

EASTERN CONFERENCE ALL-STAR TEAMS

FIRST ALL-STAR TEAM

Goaltender — Tristan Jarry (Delta, BC), Edmonton Oil Kings

Defenseman — Josh Morrissey (Calgary, AB), Prince Albert Raiders

Defenseman — Ryan Pulock (Grandview, MB) Brandon Wheat Kings

Forward — Sam Reinhart (Vancouver, BC), Kootenay Ice *

Forward — Leon Draisaitl (Cologne, Germany), Prince Albert Raiders

Forward — Curtis Lazar (Vernon, BC), Edmonton Oil Kings

SECOND ALL-STAR TEAM

Goaltender — Patrik Bartosak (Koprivnice, CZR), Red Deer Rebels

Defenseman — Griffin Reinhart (West Vancouver, BC), Edmonton Oil Kings

Defenseman — Julius Honka (Jyvaskyla, Finland), Swift Current Broncos

Forward — Curtis Valk (Medicine Hat, AB), Medicine Hat Tigers

Forward — Jaedon Descheneau (Edmonton, AB), Kootenay Ice

Forward — Chandler Stephenson (Saskatoon, SK), Regina Pate

* indicates unanimous selection 2014 Awards Finalists

WHL Rookie of the Year

Eastern Conference — Nikita Scherbak (Moscow, Russia), Saskatoon Blades

Western Conference — Nick Merkley (Calgary, AB), Kelowna Rockets

WHL Goaltender of the Year

Eastern Conference — Tristan Jarry (Delta, BC), Edmonton Oil Kings

Western Conference — Jordon Cooke (Leduc, AB), Kelowna Rockets

WHL Defenseman of the Year

Eastern Conference — Josh Morrissey (Calgary, AB), Prince Albert Raiders

Western Conference — Derrick Pouliot (Weyburn, SK), Portland Winterhawks

WHL Most Sportsmanlike Player of the Year

Eastern Conference — Sam Reinhart (Vancouver, BC), Kootenay Ice

Western Conference — Mitch Holmberg (Sherwood Park, AB), Spokane Chiefs

WHL Scholastic Player of the Year

Eastern Conference — Nelson Nogier (Saskatoon, SK) Saskatoon Blades

Western Conference — Dominic Turgeon (Cherry Hills, CO) Portland Winterhawks

WHL Coach of the Year

Eastern Conference — Shaun Clouston, Medicine Hat Tigers

Western Conference — Dave Lowry, Victoria Royals

WHL Executive of the Year

Eastern Conference — Mike Moore, Calgary Hitmen

Western Conference — Cam Hope, Victoria Royals

WHL Humanitarian of the Year

Eastern Conference — Sam Fioretti (Calgary, AB) Moose Jaw Warriors

Western Conference — Mitch Topping (Red Deer, AB) Tri City Americans

WHL Marketing / Business Award

Eastern Conference — Regina Pats

Western Conference — Seattle Thunderbirds

Tri-City Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service