Showing posts with label john b. sollenberger trophy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label john b. sollenberger trophy. Show all posts

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

1968-69 AHL Scoring Leaders

guy trottier ottawa nationals 1972-73 o-pee-chee
The American Hockey League in 1968-69 consisted of eight teams, a far cry from the 30 clubs today. The Hershey Bears won the Calder Cup with a 4-1 final series win over the Quebec Aces. There was just one player in 1968-69 to reach the 100 point plateau and the league lacked a 50 goal scorer.

Jeannot Gilbert – Hershey Bears

Jeannot Gilbert of the Hershey Bears led the league, and earned the John B. Sollenberger Trophy, with 100 points on 35 goals and 65 assists over 71 games. 1968-69 was Gilbert’s fourth of eight years in Hershey. He played nine games in the NHL over his career, five with the Boston Bruins in 1962-63 and four with the Bruins in 1964-65. Gilbert ended his pro career with two years in the World Hockey Association, 1973-74 and 1974-75, with the Quebec Nordiques.

Michel Harvey – Hershey Bears

Another member of the Hershey Bears finished second with 93 points. Michel Harvey scored 41 goals and assisted on 52 while playing the full 74 game schedule. A veteran of the AHL, playing eleven years in the league, Harvey got his chance at major league hockey in 1972-73 with the Quebec Nordiques of the WHA. 1973-74 proved to be his last year in professional hockey, playing 26 games for the Maine Nordiques in the North American Hockey League.

Guy Trottier – Buffalo Bisons

Guy Trottier of the Buffalo Bisons led the league in goals with 45 and finished third in points with 82. Trottier also played two games for the New York Rangers of the National Hockey League in 1968-69. The following season, Guy led the AHL in goals again, this time with 55.

Ron Ward – Rochester Americans

Ron Ward of the Rochester Americans finished fourth with 78 points on 35 goals and 43 points over 73 games. Ward played 18 games in the NHL the following season with the Toronto Maple Leafs. In 1971-72, with the Vancouver Canucks, Ron played 71 games in what would be his last appearance in the NHL.

Ward played 359 games in the World Hockey Association between 1972-73 and 1976-77, contributing 380 points. In Ward’s first year in the WHA, he finished second in points with 118 as a member of the struggling New York Raiders. He would also play for the Vancouver Blazers, Los Angeles Sharks, Cleveland Crusaders, Winnipeg Jets, Minnesota Fighting Saints and Calgary Cowboys during his WHA career.

Willie Marshall – Baltimore Clippers

Willie Marshall of the Baltimore Clippers also finished with 78 points but played one more game that Ron Ward. Marshall is one of the greatest players in the history of the AHL. He played 1,205 regular season games with the Pittsburgh Hornets, Hershey Bears, Providence Reds, Baltimore Clippers and Rochester Americans. He scored 523 career goals and totalled 1,375 points.

Marshall was a charter member of the AHL Hall of Fame in 2006. To date, no player has played more games or had more goals, assists and points over an AHL career than Willie. Since 2003-04, the Willie Marshall Award has been handed out to the AHL player with the most goals scored during the regular season.


Thursday, March 20, 2014

Quebec Aces: 1967-68 AHL Offensive Powerhouse

simon nolet philadelphia flyers rookie hockey card
The Quebec Aces were nearly their twilight as an American Hockey League franchise in 1967-68. In just a few short years, the team would move south to Richmond, Virginia. The Aces placed second overall in the eight team AHL and reached the Calder Cup finals that year. Leading the way offensively were a trio of players that finished among the top four in the league for scoring. Two were on their way up to the NHL while the third well into his career and had hit a bit of a speed bump.

Simon Nolet

Nolet scored 44 goals and assisted on 52 for 96 points over 70 regular season games for Quebec in 1967-68. He placed second in the league for goals and led in points, earning the John B. Sollenberger Trophy. That year, Simon also got into four regular season games with the Philadelphia Flyers, along with one game in the Stanley Cup playoffs.

Before retiring after the 1976-77 season, Simon Nolet played in 562 regular season and 34 playoff games in the National Hockey League with the Philadelphia Flyers, Kansas City Scouts, Pittsburgh Penguins and Colorado Rockies. He won a Stanley Cup with Philadelphia in 1973-74 and was picked up that same summer by the Scouts, fifth overall in the 1974 NHL Expansion Draft. Simon was team captain in Kansas City during the 1974-75 season and part of 1975-76 before being traded to the Penguins. For his short stay with the Rockies in 1976-77, Nolet once again wore the ‘C’.

Andre Lacroix

Lacroix spent more time with the Flyers in the NHL during the 1967-68 season and subsequently appeared in just 54 games for the Aces during the regular season. Even still, his 41 goals tied him for sixth with Howie Glover of the Cleveland Barons and he tied teammate Jean-Guy Gendron for third in points with 87.

It was Andre’s second full year of pro hockey and he finished off the year with Philadelphia, playing in 18 games and contributing a decent 14 points. In the Stanley Cup playoffs, Lacroix played another seven games, adding five points.

Andre was not far removed from being a two-time MVP in the OHA with the Peterborough Petes and still stands one of a handful of players to win the Red Tilson Trophy on more than one occasion. Lacroix would go on to become one of the greatest players in WHA history, winning the Bill Hunter Trophy as scoring champ on two occasions, once with the Philadelphia Blazers in 1972-73 and again with the San Diego Mariners in 1974-75.

Andre Lacroix played 325 regular season games in the National Hockey League with the Flyers, Chicago Blackhawks and Hartford Whalers. His time with the Whalers came in 1979-80 when the remaining four WHA teams merged with the NHL. Andre played 551 regular season games in the rebel league with the Blazers, New York Golden Blades, Mariners, Houston Aeros and New England Whalers.

Jean-Guy Gendron

In his fourth year with the Aces, Gendron scored 29 and assisted on 58 for 87 points over 72 regular season games. He placed second in the AHL for assists and tied Andre Lacroix for third in points. Like the other two, he did spend time in the NHL with the Flyers that season. However, Jean-Guy’s time was limited to one regular season game.

Gendron’s NHL career began in 1955-56 and he played in 863 regular season and 42 playoff games before jumping to the WHA after the 1971-72 season. Along with the Flyers, Jean-Guy also played for the New York Rangers, Boston Bruins and Montreal Canadiens. He ended his career with two years as team captain of the Quebec Nordiques in the World Hockey Association, 1972-73 and 1973-74.

Quebec Aces 1967-68

The Vic Stasiuk coached Aces finished second in the four team West Division and second overall in the eight team AHL with 77 points over 72 games. They reached the Calder Cup finals before falling to the Rochester Americans in six games. Interestingly, over the three rounds of playoffs, Quebec scored 55 goals and allowed 55 goals. In the opening round against the Buffalo Bisons, each team scored 21 goals. In the 2nd round against the Providence Reds, the Aces had the edge 13-10. In the finals, the Amerks outscored Quebec 24-21.

The Quebec Aces were members of the American Hockey League from 1959-60 to 1970-71, although the franchise dates back to 1928-29. Upon moving south, they were known as the Richmond Robins from 1971-72 to 1975-76 before folding. The Aces never won a Calder Cup championship but went to the finals three times over their fairly brief history.