TOLEDO'S J.C. SAWYER NAMED TO ALL-ECHL FIRST TEAM

By: Chris Etheridge
Defenseman has 58 points for Toledo in 65 games

TOLEDO, Ohio- The Toledo Walleye's J.C. Sawyer has been named to the All-ECHL First Team for the 2009-10 season, the ECHL announced on Thursday.

Sawyer leads all ECHL defensemen with 21 goals, 58 points and seven game-winning goals while ranking second with 37 assists. He is tied for third among ECHL defensemen with 24 power-play points and sits tied for fourth with 18 power-play assists.

The 24-year-old was chosen as a starter for the 2010 ECHL All-Star Game and served as captain for the American Conference.  He also appeared in the 2008 All-Star Game while with Pensacola.

Sawyer, who is in his third year of an entry-level contract with the National Hockey League's Chicago Blackhawks, has suited up for four games with the Rockford IceHogs of the American Hockey League this season, recording one assist.

"I am excited to receive such an honor," Sawyer said. "It means a lot to me to have the respect of my peers for having an outstanding season.  It also says a lot about the season that we have had here in Toledo, where the fan support has been fabulous since day one."

The Saint John, New Brunswick native was selected No. 161 overall (round 5) by the Minnesota Wild in the 2004 NHL Entry Draft.  He has appeared in 23 career AHL games, all with the IceHogs over three seasons (2007-2010), recording three goals and two assists.

Other members of the 2009-10 All-ECHL First Team include forwards Mark Derlago (Idaho Steelheads), Tyler Donati (Elmira Jackals) and Ryan Kinasewich (Utah Grizzlies) as well as defenseman Eric Regan (Bakersfield Condors) and goalie Todd Ford (South Carolina Stingrays).

The team was determined in a vote of ECHL coaches, who were asked to select a goaltender, two defensemen and three forwards.

Next Home Game:
Friday, April 2 vs. Lake Erie Monsters. The game starts at 7:05 p.m. The IceHogs open up their final home weekend of the 2009-10 regular season. The first 1,500 kids 14 and under will pick up an IceHogs Youth Hockey Stick courtesy of McDonalds and 97ZOK. Also, the first 1,500 fans to the game will receive a 2009-10 IceHogs Team Photo.



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