The Australian Ice Hockey League have released the schedule for the upcoming 2020 season. The regular season will start on 18 April and run through to 23 August followed by the playoffs weekend on 29 and 30 August at a location to be announced. The league also announced that the All-Star Game has been removed from the 2020 schedule following a request to allow more rest for the teams. A round of the 2020 season will also be dedicated to firefighters to help raise money for the Rural Fire Services and to the Red Cross.
The CBR Brave, Sydney Sirens and Melbourne Ice Women have all ranked in the Top 25 of the Australasia’s Best Sporting Team 2019 list produced by Platinum Asset Management and GAIN LINE Analytics. The CBR Brave ranked highest for ice hockey coming in at ninth and was the only AIHL club featured. The Sydney Sirens and Melbourne Ice Women ranked 21st and 23rd respectively. The Newcastle Northstars dropped out of the Top 25 after ranking 19th in the 2018 list.
The Newcastle Northstars held their 2019 Club Awards yesterday. For more information see the article from the Newcastle Star’s Ellie-Marie Watts.
– Most Valuable Player: Sammy Banga
– Best Defensive Player Award: Dayne Davis
– Most Improved Player Award: Richard Tesarik
– Most Dedicated Player Award: Robert Malloy
– Tony Huntley Award for Best Australian Player: Charlie Smart
– Coaches’ Award: Josh Secomb
Defenceman Thomas Kiliwnik has debuted for the Newcastle Northstars in their 9 June game against the Sydney Ice Dogs. Kiliwnik spent the 2018-19 season playing for the Brisbane Blitz in the Australian Junior Ice Hockey League where he recorded eight points in 15 games. For more information see the 7 June article from the Newcastle Herald.
Phillips spent the 2018-19 season playing in the ECHL for the Jacksonville IceMen and Fort Wayne Komets where he recorded eleven points from 42 games. Simpson started his 2018-19 season off with Mount Royal University in the U Sports system before signing with the Lacombe Generals of Allan Cup Hockey West.
Both players are expected to arrive on 6 June. For more information see the Episode 8 of the AIHL Podcast.
Czech forward Ondrej Smach has left the Newcastle Northstars line-up following their game against the Melbourne Ice on 26 May. The departure of Smach and the injury to Dominik Gabaj leaves the club short two imports however they are expected to announce replacements in June. Smach played ten games for the Northstars, recording five goals and ten assists.
The Newcastle Northstars have announced that they’ve recalled defenceman Matt Wetini from their East Coast Super League (ECSL) club. Wetini comes into the line-up following a season ending injury to Dominik Gabaj.
Wetini has played four games for the North Stars ECSL this season, recording five assists. He has competed in a total of 235 AIHL games from 2010 to 2018, accumulating 63 points. For more information see the article from the Newcastle Herald.
The Newcastle Northstars have announced the signing of forward Connor Schultz for the 2019 season, replacing Tim Stanger who is out with a shoulder injury. Schultz spent the 2018-19 season playing for the Sydney Sabres in the Australian Junior Ice Hockey League where he recorded nine points in 15 games. He has also represented Australia at the 2018 and 2019 U18 World Championships. For more information see the article from the Newcastle Herald.