On Mother’s Day, meet the World’s Busiest Hockey Mom

Ken Campbell
Meg Hishmeh

Meg Hishmeh and her son, Blake, will spend Mother’s Day doing exactly what they’ve done for the better part of the past month. Blake will do four hours of therapy at a rehabilitation hospital in Denver, then they’ll watch the hockey games together.

Don’t worry, the story will have a happy ending when 18-year-old Blake is discharged May 20 and returns to finish up his high school year in New Jersey. And with him will be Meg, who took a break from her job as World’s Busiest Hockey Mom™ to help usher her son back to what it is expected to be a full recovery from a traumatic brain injury after a back flip off a jump at the Breckenridge Ski Resort in Colorado went horribly awry during spring break. Blake was airlifted from the ski hill and spent eight days in intensive care before being transferred to the rehab hospital on April 14. Read more

USHL goaltender’s diving stick stop is potential save of the year

Jared Clinton
Colin DeAugustine makes one of the best saves of the year (via USHL/YouTube)

Colin DeAugustine isn’t currently committed to a school to play college hockey. The exposure he’s about to get for his save of the year candidate may very well change that.

DeAugustine, 19, plays for the USHL’s Youngstown Phantoms and this past Friday in a game against the Waterloo Black Hawks, he made one of the most incredible stick saves you’ll see this season, next season and probably any season in the future: Read more

Shannon Szabados dominates competition in SPHL, named Player of the Week

Jared Clinton
Shannon Szabados (Todd Kirkland/Getty Images)

A dream season for Shannon Szabados keeps getting better. With wins over Huntsville and Knoxville, Szabados was named the SPHL Player of the Week for the second time this season.

In her two victories, Szabados, who plays for the SPHL’s Columbus Cottonmouths, posted a 1.00 goals-against average and monster .970 save percentage. In Tuesday game against Huntsville, Szabados stopped 34 of the 35 shots she faced and turned aside 16 of 17 attempts Friday against Knoxville. Read more

ECHL goaltender loses shutout streak but ties another record on incredible run

Jared Clinton
Jeff Jakaitis (via South Carolina Stingrays)

South Carolina Stingrays goaltender Jeff Jakaitis was chasing down the modern day professional shutout record heading into Saturday’s contest against the Cincinnati Cyclones, but he will have to settle for minor professional’s all-time mark.

The Cyclones’ Steven Hodges scored on Jakaitis, who came into Saturday’s contest with a streak of 319:32 of consecutive shutout hockey, little more than two minutes into Saturday’s game. His final shutout mark stands at 321:46 and breaks the minor professional record set earlier this season by AHL netminder Matt Murray.

Even though Jakaitis didn’t quite reach the pro record – 332:01 set by Brian Boucher when he was a member of the Phoenix Coyotes in 2003-04 – but he did earn himself another major ECHL mark: he’s now tied for the most consecutive wins by a goaltender at 13. His four shutouts in a row coming into Saturday night were also an ECHL record. Read more

16 seasons. 22 teams. Zero NHL games. But the passion never left Frank Littlejohn

Ken Campbell
Frank Littlejohn (Photo Courtesy Brampton Beast)

Frank Littlejohn was most recently a Beast. Truth is, he’s been many beastly incarnations since he began his pro hockey career 16 years ago. He’s been a Glaciercat, an IceHawk, a Falcon, a River Rat, a River Otter, a Mallard, a Jackal and an IceGator. And that doesn’t cover half the teams he’s played for over the course of his hockey travels. He’s ranked as high as General, a Baron and a Privateer, but he’s also been a Lumberjack. He’s been a Nailer and a Checker, literally and figuratively. He’s even covered off the winter weather conditions as a Chill, a Blizzard and a Frostbite.

This issue of The Hockey News is known as our Rookie Issue, which showcases the players you’ll be seeing starring in the best league in the world for years to come. But for every Aaron Ekblad and Filip Forsberg, there are guys like Frank Littlejohn, who at 37 waits for the phone to ring with a minor league coach or GM on the other end, wondering whether he might be able to suit up and continue chasing the dream. Read more

ECHL goaltender sets league record, approaches hockey history

Jared Clinton
Jeff Jakaitis (via South Carolina Stingrays)

Jeff Jakaitis of the ECHL’s South Carolina Stingrays — the affiliate of the Washington Capitals — has already helped his team break the league record for consecutive victories, but he himself is on his way to accomplishing something much greater.

In Friday night’s game, Jakaitis stopped 35 shots en route to South Carolina’s 20th straight victory and his fourth consecutive shutout, both ECHL records. By turning aside every shot he faced, Jakaitis has now posted 319:32 consecutive minutes of shutout hockey, only 12:29 fewer than the modern day professional hockey record set by Brian Boucher in 2003-04. Read more

Is the next Logan Couture at the OHL Cup?

Ryan Kennedy
Quinte's Brady Gilmour (photo by Aaron Bell/OHL Images)

The OHL Cup has been dominated by teams from Toronto and its suburbs for years, but that doesn’t mean every player to watch hails from around the Big Smoke. This year’s edition of the minor midget showcase tournament includes a pretty solid Quinte Red Devils team, representing the area around Belleville and Cobourg, a couple hours east of Toronto.

And the leader of that Quinte squad is captain Brady Gilmour, who is also expected to go as high as top-five in the OHL draft this summer. Gilmour actually comes from Grafton, which is even smaller than Belleville and Cobourg.

Read more