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USPHL Premier Players Of The Month: West Region

By USPHL Staff, 01/04/22, 7:15PM EST

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December 2021

Pacific Division 

Forwards

Heath Mensch, Las Vegas Thunderbirds

Can’t stop a runaway train. Mensch (‘03/Las Vegas, Nev.) just keeps up the insane nearly three points per game pace over already 25 games, with a league-leading 74 points so far. During the month of December, he posted 12 goals and five assists for 17 points - in five games. He enjoyed a five-goal outing on Dec. 11 against San Diego, and he was able to cross the career 100-point mark in December as well. In two seasons, he has 111 points in 61 regular season games. 

 

Caleb Strong, Las Vegas Thunderbirds

Strong (‘01/Alexandria, Minn.) put together a 4-8-12 line for just five December games, helping the Thunderbirds stand at a division-best 8-2-0-0 in their last 10 games. His best performance was on Dec. 12, when he posted a goal and four assists for five points, and he has raised his points total to 58 points in 25 games. 

 

Adam Wedberg, San Diego Sabers

The 2001-born Swede just joined the Sabers in November for his first North American season, and he is already tied for the team lead in scoring, with 23 points in just 12 games. During December, he registered 8-6-14 in seven games for two points per game on average. Even while Mensch and Strong were registering some of their best offense against the Sabers, Wedberg had a hat trick against the Thunderbirds. His best output was six points, including two game-winners, in a three-game sweep of the Lake Tahoe Lakers right before the break. 

 

Defense 

Luke Stevens, Lake Tahoe Lakers

Not only is Stevens the top-scoring defensemen in the league, he is in the top five for all leading scorers. The 2002-born native of Denver, Colo., has been rendered unstoppable, including an 8-8-16 line through his eight games in the month of December. He’s not all offense, either, as Stevens blocked 12 shots and posted a +8 rating for the month. 

 

Loic Gosselin, Las Vegas Thunderbirds

Gosselin (‘04/Kingsey Falls, Que.) also returns to this honor as he can never get too much of a good thing. The Thunderbirds made the most traction in the division for December, going 4-1. Gosselin chipped in eight assists in the five games and earned a positive plus-minus rating while also helping the team to no more than four goals against in any game, a good measure int the offense-heavy Pacific Division. 

 

Goaltender

Anthony Bonaldi, Las Vegas Thunderbirds

Bonaldi (‘01/Las Vegas, Nev.) ended up putting together the best performance in December for any Pacific goalie facing at least 100 shots, and boy did he face shots. He made 132 stops on 144 shots to go 1-1 against Lake Tahoe and get a second straight 46-save win against San Diego to close out 2021. He is 8-5-0-0 on this, his second season as a T-Bird. 

 

Mountain Division

Forwards

Cade Herrera, Ogden Mustangs

Herrera (‘02/Brentwood, Calif.) put together an 8-9-17 month in nine December games for the Mustangs, who continue in their pursuit of the first place Utah Outliers. Herrera registered a career-best four goals and added an assist against the Provo Riverblades on Dec. 10. He now has 41 points in 30 games and 98 points in two USPHL regular seasons. 

 

Lukas Washco, Ogden Mustangs

In his nine December games, Washco had a nine-game scoring streak of 6-10-16 to push the Mustangs to a 6-3-0-0 record in December. The 2001-born native of Vilnius, Lithuania, has just hit the 90-point mark for his career, just behind his two-year teammate Herrera. His best game was a 1-3-4 performance in a win against the Pueblo Bulls on Dec. 5. 

 

Miles McCue, Utah Outliers

The 2002-born native of Plano, Texas, helps the Outliers win, win and win some more. They are on a 13-game winning streak as of Jan. 4, and McCue posted a 5-8-13 over his five December games to help the Outliers stay on that beat. McCue improved to 32 points in 28 games in his first season here in the USPHL Premier.

 

Defense 

Xavier Fortin, Northern Colorado Eagles

The Eagles, at 6-3-1-0 in their last 10, have been able to get some distance at third place from those just below in them in the standings. Fortin (‘02/Candiac, Que.) wasn’t able to play in every December game, but when he was in the lineup, he produced. He had five assists in five December games and overall, he has 19 points in 24 games, and 34 points in 63 contests overall. 

 

Luke Faas, Ogden Mustangs

Faas (‘03/Eagle, Idaho) put up a line of 4-7-11 in the space of nine December games for the Mustangs, the best point production for a Mountain Division blueliner. Six of these 11 points came over the Dec. 10-12 weekend in which the Mustangs went 2-1 against the Provo Riverblades, the South Shore Kings and the Utah Outliers. 

 

Goaltender

Marco Felicetti, Utah Outliers

Felicetti (‘03/Cavalese, Italy) went 4-0 for the month of December, while giving up just eight total goals. He continues to be among the league leaders in wins, with 14 victories. He is 14-2-1-0 with a 2.23 goals against average and a .929 save percentage. For December, he stopped 102 of 110 shots for a .927 save percentage.