1ST STAR: MATEJ PEKAR (SUDBURY WOLVES) – 3G
Matej Pekar’s fourth hat-trick of the season helped fuel the Sudbury Wolves’ fourth straight win in a 7-1 defeat of the Niagara IceDogs. The 20-year-old forward scored a pair of early goals 25 seconds apart to bring the Wolves up 2-0, then completed the trio midway through the final frame to bring the score up to 5-1. Pekar now has two hat-tricks in his last four games and holds 53 points through 42 games in his second OHL stint. A native of Turnov, Czech Republic, Pekar was chosen by the Colts in the second round of the 2018 CHL Import Draft before being traded to the Wolves this past January. He was drafted by the Buffalo Sabres in the fourth round of the 2018 NHL Draft.
2ND STAR: JOE VRBETIC (NORTH BAY BATTALION) – 38 SAVES
Rookie netminder Joe Vrbetic saved 38 of the 40 shots he faced in net for the North Bay Battalion as they defeated the Mississauga Steelheads 3-2 in overtime on Sunday afternoon. The 17-year-old’s performance helped the Troops to back-to-back weekend wins; recording a 41-save shutout on Saturday night. The Dunvegan, Ont. native boasts a 4.38 goals-against average as well as a .879 save percentage through 37 performances and sees his record improve to 11-24-0-0 on the year. Vrbetic was picked up by the Battalion in the second round of the 2018 OHL Priority Selection from the Don Mills Flyers Minor Midgets and spent the 2018-19 season with the NOJHL’s Powassan VooDoos where he held a 2.80 goals-against average and .928 save percentage through 30 games played.
3RD STAR: KOSTA MANIKIS (SUDBURY WOLVES) – 2G
Sudbury Wolves rookie Kosta Manikis recorded a career-high two goals in his team’s 7-1 win over the division rival Niagara IceDogs. The 18-year-old centreman had help from Isaak Phillips and Liam Ross to put the Wolves up 3-0 early in the second period, before connecting with Owen Gilhula and Adam Samuelsson to push his team up 6-1 midway through the final frame. The product of Richmond Hill, Ont. has seven goals and seven assists for 14 points over his first 37 games. Manikis was picked in the fifth round of the 2017 OHL Priority Selection from the Vaughan Kings Minor Midgets and spent time with the OJHL’s Stouffville Spirit and Toronto Jr. Canadiens before suiting up for the Wolves this season.