Burnaby boy picks up honours by the truck load
John Down, Canwest News Service
Published: Thursday, May 01, 2008
CALGARY -- Karl Alzner killed some time Tuesday by taking a few vehicles for test drives.
Hopefully one of them was a truck, because the 19-year-old Burnaby native continued to pick up more accolades and trophies Wednesday when he was named the Western Hockey League's top player and defenceman of the year during the annual awards luncheon.
The Calgary Hitmen captain beat out Calgary's T.J. Fast of the Tri-City Americans for the defensive award and Colton Yellow Horn, of Brocket, Alta., also of the Americans, for the prestigious Four Broncos Memorial Trophy as player of the year.
A two-time gold medallist with Canada at the world junior championships, including this year when he captained the team, Alzner becomes the WHL's nominee for Canadian Hockey League player of the year.
"It's incredibly nice to be honoured for something like this," said a smiling Alzner, the 2007 first-round (fifth overall) draft choice of the Washington Capitals.
"A guy I respect so much, Kris Russell [former Medicine Hat defenceman], did it the year before, so I'm happy to be following in his footsteps."
Winnipeg's Chet Pickard won the Del Wilson Trophy as the goaltender of the year, edging Regina Pats' Linden Rowatt, of Cochrane, Alta.; Brandon Wheat Kings centre, Brayden Schenn, of Saskatoon won the Jim Piggott Memorial Trophy for rookie of the year, beating out Evander Kane, who played with his hometown Vancouver Giants; Tri-City bench boss Don Nachbaur won the Dunc McCallum Memorial Trophy as coach of the year over Lethbridge Hurricanes coach Michael Dyck.
Other winners included, Medicine Hat Tigers' Tyler Ennis (Brad Hornung Trophy, most sportsmanlike player); Regina Pats' Jordan Eberle (Daryl K. Seaman Trophy, top scholastic player), Prince Albert Raiders' Ashton Hewson (Doug Wickenheiser Memorial Trophy, humanitarian of the year) and Tri-City's Bob Tory (Lloyd Saunders Memorial Trophy, executive of the year).
© The Vancouver Sun 2008