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Bednar, Kidney among winners at annual Titan Awards Banquet

BATHURST, N.B. – The Acadie-Bathurst Titan held their annual awards banquet Tuesday evening at the Best Western Plus to wrap up the 2021-22 season. A total of 13 awards were handed out including the Offensive and Defensive Player of the Year as well as Rookie of the Year and Most Valuable Player.

Defenceman Carter Ansems took home the Humanitarian Personality of the Year. On his own time, the defenceman participated to spring hockey league practices for a group of U7 aged players, which made for a positive experience for the children who loved skating with the Titan player. He even stopped for a team photo afterwards.

The Student Player of the Year for the 2021-22 season was awarded to forward Ben Allison. This year Ben took an oceanography course at Acadia University and is currently working on Human Nutrition and Communications. The Nova Scotia native not only excels academically, but athletically as well. Since the puck dropped on the 2021-22 the left-winger has seen his best season to date with 20 goals and 27 assists for 47 points in 68 games.

Next up was the Most Courageous Player award. The winner was forward Jacob Melanson. The Seattle Kraken prospect showed his offensive strength this year finishing the regular season strong with 35 goals and 21 assists for 56 points in 54 games. Forward Bennett MacArthur was named the Most Underestimated Player after posting a career high 42 goals and 35 assists for 77 points in 54 games. Despite not being drafted in the QMJHL or the NHL, the 20-year-old has gone on to become one of the leading scorers for the team and signed a three-year entry-level contract with the Tampa Bay Lightning earlier this year.

The Most Improved Player award was given to defenceman Marc-Andre Gaudet. Drafted 109th overall in the seventh round of the 2019 QMJHL Draft, the Saint-Ignace product put up career-highs in all offensive categories this year with 13 goals and 25 assists for 38 points in 68 games. Forward Joseph Henneberry was chosen as the Rookie of the Year. Drafted in the sixth round of the 2020 QMJHL by the Titan, the 17-year-old from Halifax, Nova Scotia netted 14 goals and 15 assists for 29 points in 68 games this season.

Jacques Ouellet was honoured as the Volunteer of the Year. Ouellet has poured his heart and soul into volunteering and supporting the organization over the years in one capacity or another and we are forever grateful for the time, energy, commitment and passion he has and continues to put into our team. The 2021-22 Employee of the Year award went to Billet Coordinator, Monique Boudreau. A beloved member of the organization who is more family than employee, Monique has solidified herself as one of the pillars of the organization for her love, devotion and hard work in ensuring players have the best experience in their billet homes.

Captain Logan Chisholm took home the Defensive Player of the Year award. This year, the right-winger from Antigonish, Nova Scotia had 13 goals and 14 assists for 27 points in 54 games along with 48 penalty minutes. The Offensive Player of the Year was forward Riley Kidney. The talented centreman from Nova Scotia finished seventh in league scoring and broke into the 100-point club last month. Since the puck dropped in October, the Montreal Canadiens prospect has scored 30 goals and 70 assists for 100 points in 66 games.

The Titan Foundation Fans’ Choice Award went to defenceman Zach Biggar. A hard-working blue-liner from Portage, Prince Edward Island, Biggar finished the regular season with four goals and 28 assists for 32 points in 63 games and a plus/minus of +10.

With a total of 13 first star, two second star and two third star selections, the winner of the 2021-22 Stars Cup is forward Felix Lafrance. The speedy forward from Saint-Eustache, Quebec joined the team during the Christmas trade period and capped-off his final QMJHL season with a total of 34 goals and 45 assists for 79 points in 48 games.

Goaltender Jan Bednar was selected as the Most Valuable Player. Drafted in the fourth round of the 2020 NHL Entry Draft by the Detroit Red Wings, Bednar was the backbone of the team in his second season with the Titan. Not only did he backstop the team throughout 47 games during the regular season, he finished with 28 wins, a 2.72 goals-against-average and a save percentage of 0.912.

The Titan now turn their attention to the 2022 President Cup Playoffs which get underway Thursday night at the K.C. Irving Regional Centre. Acadie-Bathurst will take on the Halifax Mooseheads in a best-of-five, first-round series.

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