The Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League has handed out its divisional awards for the 2021-2022 season.
Each division – the Sherwood, the Global Ag Risk Solutions, and the Viterra – recognized its respective Most Valuable Player, Top Forward, Top Defenceman, Top Goaltender, and Top Rookie over the past few weeks as voted on by the coaches.
Now, the Viterra Division.
SGEU Most Valuable Player – Eric Pearce, Estevan Bruins
This year, the Regina, SK native was a key cog in the deep Estevan attack and posted 20 goals and 48 points in 40 games for the Centennial Cup hosts. An ace face-off man, Pearce was also a big reason the Bruins finished the campaign with a league second-best 90.2 percent penalty kill.
A 2001-born power forward, Pearce played 238 games in the Western Hockey League, three of which in the Memorial Cup, with the Prince Albert Raiders and Brandon Wheat Kings, and spent the five contests of the Covid shortened 2020-21 season with the Bruins.
The centreman spent his final year of minor hockey in 16-17 with the Regina Pat Canadians U18AAA.
Pearce is a Directwest commitment to the University of Regina in USports.
RBC Top Forward – Mark Rumsey, Estevan Bruins
A 20-year-old from St. John’s NFLD, Rumsey parlayed his huge shot and offensive instincts into the league goalscoring title with 39 snipes and power-play goals with 16. His 76 points were also good for third in the SJHL, and first in the Viterra Division.
Before joining the Centennial Cup hosts, the 6-foot-3, 205-pound forward spent 85 games in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League spread between the Moncton Wildcats, Acadie-Bathurst Titan, and Cape Breton Eagles.
His final year of minor hockey in 18-19 was spent with the Tri Pen Osprey U18AAAs in his home province.
Mayfair Diagnostics Top Defenceman – Tyson Janzen, Yorkton Terriers
One of the longest-serving players in the league, Janzen spent all 158 of his regular-season SJHL contests with the Terriers. A steady two-way defenceman, the Saskatoon native posted 10 goals and 31 points for Yorkton in the 21-22 regular campaign and was a critical part in helping his club upset the No. 3 seeded Melfort Mustangs in Round 1 of the post-season.
Before coming to the Terriers, the 6-foot-2, 181-pound played two seasons for hometown U18AAA Contacts and was selected by the Terriers in the 2016 SJHL U15 draft out of the AA Saskatoon Outlaws.
Directwest Top Rookie / SaskTel Top Goaltender – Kael DePape, Yorkton Terriers
Although only 18 for most of the campaign, the 5-foot-11, 170-pound DePape posted an outstanding 22-15-0-5 record, with a 2.32 goals-against average and .915 save percentage despite only playing in a single junior game before the year started.
A Yorkton native, DePape led the division in minutes with 2,585, and his 22 victories on the year were fourth in the league only behind three seasoned veterans. He also led the league by a considerable margin in shootout shots faced with 28, still earning an impressive shootout save percentage of .714.
The 2003-born netminder spent the Covid-shortened 20-21 campaign with the Moose Jaw Warriors U18AAA, after starting for two seasons for his hometown Yorkton Maulers U