SAN JOSE BARRACUDA ANNOUNCE 2020-21 TEAM AWARD WINNERSMay 27, 2021
San Jose, Ca – The San Jose Barracuda (@SJBarracuda), proud American Hockey League (@TheAHL) affiliate of the San Jose Sharks (@SanJoseSharks), announced today the individual team award winners for the 2020-21 season as selected by the San Jose Barracuda Hockey Operations Department.
Barracuda Most Valuable Player: Alexander True
In his fourth professional season, Alexander True finished tied for first on the Barracuda in shorthanded goals (1) and tied for third in points (20), goals (9), assists (11), power-play goals (2) and power-play assists (4). In addition, the Copenhagen, Denmark native appeared in seven games with the Sharks, collecting one assist. For True, it marks the second time in the last three years that he has earned the award (2018-19), becoming the first player in franchise history to be named Team MVP twice. The other winners of the award include Maxim Letunov (2019-20), Antoine Bibeau (2017-18), Troy Grosenick (2016-17) and Ryan Carpenter (2015-16).
Barracuda Rookie of the Year: Brinson Pasichnuk
Among team rookies, Brinson Pasichnuk finished 2020-21 first in shots (52), games played (32) and tied for first in insurance goals (1). In addition, he ranked second among team freshmen in assists (7), power-play assists (2) and tied for second in points (8). The product of Arizona State also appeared in his first four NHL games with the Sharks, recording two penalty minutes. Pasichnuk joins Joachim Blichfeld (2019-20), Josef Korenar (2018-19), Rudolfs Balcers (2017-18), Danny O’Regan (2016-17) and Nikolay Goldobin (2015-16) as winners of the team’s Rookie of the Year award.
Barracuda Top Defenseman: Jake Middleton
After beginning the season with the Sharks where he appeared in one game on Jan. 16, Jake Middleton finished his fifth professional season, first among Barracuda defensemen in goals (3), tied for first in fighting majors (2), second in shooting percentage (7.5%), third in plus/minus (4) and fourth in shots (40). Middleton joins Trevor Carrick as the only other winner of the Top Defenseman award which was established in 2019-20.
John McCarthy Leadership Award: Jaycob Megna
In his first season in San Jose, Jaycob Megna donned the “C” as the team’s third captain in franchise history, replacing John McCarthy who retired due to health reasons the season prior after serving as team captain from 2016-19. Among team defensemen, Megna finished first on the team in shots (55), game-winning goals (1), unassisted goals (2), tied for first in plus/minus (+8), tied for third in goals (2), fourth in points (8) and fifth in assists (6). Megna joins Jeff Viel as the only other winner of the award which was established in 2019-20. The John McCarthy Leadership Award is annually presented to the player who displays incredible leadership qualities on the ice, amongst his teammates and within the community, through his preparation, hard work, character and inclusivity.
McCarthy was selected by the Sharks in the seventh round of the 2006 NHL Draft and now serves as a Development Coach for the for the Barracuda. He holds all major Barracuda franchise records including games played (275), goals (62), assists (76), points (138), power-play goals (17), and shorthanded goals (5). He served as the Barracuda team captain from 2016 to 2019 before his retirement and also served as captain of the Worcester Sharks for the 2012-13 season. In total, McCarthy appeared in 640 regular-season games with San Jose's NHL and AHL franchises. In 2018, McCarthy was selected to the United States Men's Olympic Ice Hockey Team, appearing in five games at the Pyeongchang Olympics. McCarthy retired last December after suffering an Ischemic stroke.
Roy Sommer Most Inspirational Award: Brandon Coe
The Sharks selected Brandon Coe in the fourth round in 2020 NHL Draft. Based on the National Hockey League (@NHL) and Canadian Hockey League (@CHLHockey) Agreement, a signed player aged 18 or 19 who was claimed from a CHL club and not retained by the NHL club, must be assigned to the CHL junior club whom he last played for or owes a contractual obligation. However, since the Ontario Hockey League (@OHLHockey) did not conduct a season due to COVID-19, Coe was granted the ability to play in the AHL all year. After appearing in just one game over the Barracuda’s first 17, Coe would play in 16 of the team’s final 18 outings. Among Barracuda rookies, Coe finished the regular season tied for first in power-play goals (1), third in assists (4) and tied for fifth in points (5).
Coe joins Manny Wiederer (2019-20), Viel (2018-19) and McCarthy (2016-17, 2017-18) as winners of the award, which was implemented following the 2016-2017 season. Last year, the Most Inspirational Award was renamed for Sommer, who has held the role of head coach for the Sharks AHL affiliate for 23 seasons.
Roy Sommer is the all-time leader in games coached and wins in AHL history, posting a 787-679-48-159 (W-L-T-OTL/SOL) record. Each of those wins has come behind the bench of San Jose's AHL affiliate (Kentucky 1998-01, Cleveland 2001-06, Worcester 2006-15, San Jose 2015-present). He also served as an assistant coach with the Sharks during the 1997-98 season under Darryl Sutter and an Associate Coach for the Sharks in 2019-20. In his time as head coach in the AHL, Sommer has promoted more than 135 players to the NHL.
Three Stars Award: Joel Kellman
Presented to the player who accumulates the most points through three-star nominations at home games during the season, Joel Kellman joins Korenar (2019-20), Francis Perron (2018-19), Balcers (2017-18), Grosenick (2016-17) and Aaron Dell (2015-16) as winners of the team's Three Stars Award.