Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League

Bombers’ Houle named a finalist for CJHL Defenceman of the Year

(Release courtesy CJHL)

TORONTO – The Canadian Junior Hockey League (CJHL) announced Wednesday the names of the five finalists for its Top Defenceman Award, in the 2023-24 campaign.

Each of the finalists were determined through a voting process completed by the CJHL’s nine-member leagues, for their respective efforts during the course of the regular season.

The following are the five nominees for CJHL Top Defenceman laurels:

Brody Mortensen, Canmore Eagles (AJHL) –
 Canmore’s Mortensen was the AJHL’s Outstanding Defenceman award winner. … The 2004-blueliner and Lindenwood University (NCAA) commit was fourth in scoring among AJHL defencemen with 34 points (12G, 22A), in his second campaign with the Eagles. … Mortensen was twice awarded AJHL Defensive Player of the Week for his shut-down play and offensive capabilities. “Brody played high-end minutes against the league’s top players each night represented the Eagles to the highest standard,” said Eagles general manager and head coach Andrew Milne. “His dedication, determination, and exceptional skill on the ice have earned him this recognition from his opponents. Winning AJHL Defenceman of the Year is a testament to his hard work and commitment to excellence. He has proven himself to be a leader both on and off the ice and we’re incredibly proud of his achievement.”

With files from Charla Flett, Executive Director (AJHL)

Noah Houle, Flin Flon Bombers (SJHL) – Houle’s 68 points were the most by a defenceman in the SJHL since Josh McDougall of the Nipawin Hawks posted 74 in the 2017-18 season. … Houle is committed to Lindenwood University of NCAA Division I for next season. … The 2003-born Montreal, Que., native was second on his team with an impressive plus/minus rating of plus-38, proving his two-way competence.

With files from Clark Munroe & Jamie Neugebauer, Co-Directors of Media (SJHL)

Noah Szabo, Steinbach Pistons (MJHL) – Finishing fourth among all defenders in MJHL scoring, Szabo earned the MJHL nod for CJHL Top Defenceman. … A second-year member of the Steinbach Pistons, Szabo added 14 goals from the back end to go along with 30 helpers in 47 games for a league-high 0.94 points-per-game average. … The NCAA D-1 commit to Alaska-Fairbanks did it all for the Pistons and played big minutes in key situations for the defending league champions. … Szabo was voted as an MJHL First Team All-Star and was named the MJHL’s Top Defenceman.

With files from Eric Swar, Director, Marketing & Partnerships (MJHL)

David Green, St. Michael’s Buzzers (OJHL) – The 17-year-old blueliner was previously named the OJHL’s Defenceman of the Year. … Green committed to join the NCAA Division I Merrimack College Warriors beginning with the 2025-26 season. … Was tabbed 122nd overall, among North American skaters, by NHL Central Scouting for the 2024 NHL Draft. … The Toronto resident led all OJHL blueliners in goals (18) and points (57). … He scored two goals and added an assist to pace the East to victory in the OJHL Prospects game and was presented with his team’s player of the game trophy. … “We are really happy for Greener,” said Buzzers head coach and general manager Rich Ricci. “He and his family put faith in us to develop him. “He is a dedicated player that is confident but still aspiring to get better. He’s going to be a very good D-man, when you project him out with four or five more years of development.”

With files from Jim Mason, Director of Communications (OJHL)

Olivier Beaudoin, West Kent Steamers (MHL) – The 20-year-old from Sherbrooke, Quebec finished second in scoring among defencemen with 49 points. … Beaudoin tallied twelve times and added 37 assists in 49 games for West Kent. … He was second in goals and in assists among MHL defencemen. … Beaudoin did most of his damage on the scoresheet during Steamers powerplays. … He led all blueliners in man advantage markers with seven and topped all players with 22 powerplay assists. … His 29 powerplay points were second in the league. … Was also one of three defencemen with three game-winning goals. … Named Top Defensemen in December and an honourable mention for the award in January. … Beaudoin was selected to the Eastlink North Team of the Week six times.

With files from James Faulkner, Director of Communications (MHL)

Earning honourable recognition for the CJHL Top Defenceman Award were:

Xavier Laurent, Rockland Nationals (CCHL); Tristan Alexandre-Sgrosso, Cobras de Terrebonne (LHJAAQ); Andrey Manov, Blind River Beavers (NOJHL) & Blake Hilterman, Red Lake Miners (SIJHL).