Robbie Pickard named 2018-19 CCHL2 Defenseman of the Year

Photo: | Graphic: Mark Kelly

By: Dante De Caria

Ottawa, Ontario – The Central Canada Hockey League Tier 2 is proud to announce that ’98 born Ottawa Jr. Canadians defenseman Robbie Pickard is the winner of the 2018-19 CCHL2 Defenseman of the Year award.

Pickard, 20, led all CCHL2 defensemen in points (65), goals (18), assists (47), PPG (1.48) and game-winning goals (6) in 44-games this season. Among all skaters, the third year Canadians defenseman ranked first in power-play assists (18), second in assists and fourth in points. The Ottawa native also tallied 19 multi-point games, with eight of them being 3+ point games.

Ottawa Jr. Canadians Head Coach Tasso Vasilas said that Pickard earned this award not just because of his offensive play, but because of his defensive play, too.

“Robbie is a truly a unique and talented player. He has excellent defensive play combined with an outstanding offensive attack.  Balancing both of these skills is not an easy task, however it seems to come effortlessly to Robbie.  His confidence and leadership has influenced and inspired the entire team.  As the captain of the team, he exemplifies the traits of a true leader, motivating his teammates to be their best. He always supports the younger players in practice and in our games, pushing them to excel to their fullest potential.”

The veteran coach then added that Pickard’s leadership in the dressing room is very evident and he always provides feedback to both his teammates and coaches.

“Robbie has provided the coaching staff constructive feedback and suggestions that can help us all be a stronger team.  We are thrilled with Mr. Pickard’s success as he plays to win and it his sportsmanship has influenced our teams attitude to every game,” said Vasilas.

The Ottawa Jr. 67’s and Upper Canada Cyclone minor hockey alumni set the all-time CCHL2 record for points and assists by a defenseman in a season. He also set the all-time career record for the most points (136), goals (43) and assists (93) by a defenseman, passing former Perth Blue Wings D-man Adam Morton who set those career records in 2016-17.

“We are very proud and not surprised that he has surpassed all of these previous records by a  defenceman. We’re looking forward to the playoffs as a coaching staff and as a team we are looking for more of the same from Robbie and I’m sure he will not disappoint.”

The Ottawa Jr. Canadians finished first in the league for the first time since 2012-13 season. They’ll face Alexandria or Char-Lan in the Barkley Cup Quarter-Finals.