Boucherville, Que. – The QMJHL’s Ultramar Player of the Week is goaltender Anthony Morrone (Tigres | Victoriaville) who posted back-to-back shutouts in as many games over the past week.
Morrone’s strong showing was well-timed for a Tigres team in desperate need of points. With its back-to-back wins on the weekend, 4-0 over Baie-Comeau on Friday and 2-0 over Rimouski on Sunday, Victoriaville now boasts a record of 11-10-1-0, good for 12th in the standings.
Appearing in just his seventh and eighth games of the season, the shutouts were the first in Morrone’s young QMJHL career. The rookie started the weekend right by turning aside the 27 shots Baie-Comeau fired his way. Morrone followed up his stellar performance with an even better one on Sunday, this time stopping all 34 pucks Rimouski fired at him.
Unsurprisingly, Morrone was named the first star of the game in both shutout wins he had over the weekend.
Struggling to find his groove in the opening month of the season, the 18-year-old has turned tides in November; he’s won 3 of the 4 games he’s appeared in, all while displaying an outstanding 0.82 goals against average and a .975 save percentage.
Should Morrone continue to impress with his strong play, it should only be a matter of time before he begins taking away starts from his fellow 18-year-old netminder, Tristan Côté-Cazenave. Morrone’s current streak of 134 minutes and 21 seconds without allowing a goal is just under four minutes away from the franchise record of 137 minutes and 46 seconds set by goaltender James Povall last season.
Other players considered for the Ultramar Player of the Week were defenceman Olivier Galipeau (Saguenéens | Chicoutimi) and goaltender Olivier Rodrigue (Voltigeurs | Drummondville). Galipeau played three games in which he scored three times and picked up two helpers, helping him reach the top spot in goals (9) and points (24) among all QMJHL defencemen. As for Rodrigue, he first sopped 31 shots in a 4-1 win over the Armada, before turning aside all 26 shots Shawinigan fired his way in his next outing.
2017-18 Ultramar Player of the Week:
Sept. 21 – Sept. 24: Simon Lafrance (Foreurs | Val-d’Or)
Sept. 25 – Oct. 1: Yvan Mongo (Voltigeurs | Drummondville)
Oct. 2 – Oct. 8: Anthony Poulin (Armada | Blainville-Boisbriand)
Oct. 9 – Oct. 15: Mark Grametbauer (Wildcats | Moncton)
Oct. 16 – Oct. 22: Drake Batherson (Screaming Eagles | Cape Breton)
Oct. 23 – Oct. 29: Julien Tessier (Wildcats | Moncton)
Oct. 30 – Nov. 5: Étienne Montpetit (Foreurs | Val-d’Or)
Nov. 6 – Nov.12: Nicolas Beaudin (Voltigeurs | Drummondville)
Nov. 13 – Nov.19: Anthony Morrone (Tigres | Victoriaville)