WICHITA FALLS, Texas – Wichita Falls Wildcats goaltender Austin Shaw was named the Easton Hockey North American Hockey League Goaltender of the Month after a record-setting start to his first season of junior hockey, it was announced Thursday.
“We came into this season wanting one of our goaltenders to step up and claim the starting job, and Austin has done exactly that through the first month of the year,” Wildcats Head Coach John LaFontaine said. “His maturity and mental strength have helped him make a smooth transition to the junior level. We are excited to watch him continue to develop into a top Division I-prospect.”
The Colorado-born Shaw finished September with a 4-0-0 record, 1.00 goals against average and a save percentage of .966 to lead the league in all of those categories. His four goals against is also the best mark in the league among goaltenders who have appeared in at least three contests.
Shaw began his Wildcats career in stylish fashion, posting a 31-save shutout against the Minnesota Wilderness in his first-career appearance for Wichita Falls, and has continued that high level of play. The first-year netminder has not allowed a goal through the first two periods of any game, and is yet to allow more than two goals in any contest.
In addition to earning him league honors, Shaw’s strong start has set new benchmarks in the Wildcats record books. His shutout streak of 106:09 is the longest shutout streak to start a career by a Wildcats goaltender in franchise history, surpassing Eric Gravaglia’s mark of 75:39 to start his career in 2010-11. Additionally, with four wins in his first four appearances, Shaw has tied the club record for most consecutive wins to start a career by a goaltender, equaling Matt Leon’s mark set at the start of the 2011-12 season.
Shaw and the Wildcats are back in action on Oct. 3 and 4 when they host the Lone Star Brahmas at the Kay Yeager Coliseum. Oct. 4 is First Responders Appreciation Night presented by Whataburger, with all police, firefighters and EMTs receiving free admission with valid ID. That weekend is also the Wildcats Pride Boost Club pumpkin auction.
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