Zapolski named CCM ECHL Most Valuable Player

PRINCETON, N.J. – The ECHL on Friday announced that
Ryan Zapolski of the South Carolina Stingrays has been named the CCM ECHL Most Valuable Player for 2012-13.

The CCM Most Valuable Player award is presented annually to the player selected to be the most valuable to his team as determined in a vote of ECHL coaches, broadcasters, media relations directors and media members.

Mathieu Roy of Florida finished second, followed by Gwinnett’s Casey Pierro-Zabotel, Nick Mazzolini of Alaska and Colton Yellow Horn of Ontario.

Zapolski joins Frederic Cloutier (Louisiana, 2001-02) as the only players in ECHL history to win Rookie of the Year, Goaltender of the Year and Most Valuable Player in the same season. He is the first rookie to win MVP honors since Cincinnati’s David Desharnais in 2007-08, and joins Cloutier and Scott Stirling (Atlantic City, 2003-04) as the only goaltenders to be named ECHL Most Valuable Player.

The 26-year-old led the ECHL with a 1.64 goals-against average, a .942 save percentage and eight shutouts, while finishing tied for second with 27 wins and fifth with 2,378 minutes played. He set a new ECHL single-season record for lowest goals-against average, while tying the mark for most shutouts in a season and tying the second best save percentage in league history. Zapolski also earned Most Valuable Player honors at the 2013 ECHL All-Star Game, stopping all 17 shots he faced in the second period of the ECHL All-Star 7-3 win against Colorado.

A native of Erie, Pa., Zapolski allowed two goals or less in 32 of his 38 appearances this season, and was at his best down the stretch going 12-3-2 over his last 17 games with five shutouts, a 1.22 goals-against average and a save percentage of .960.

CCM ECHL Most Valuable Player Award Winners

2013 Ryan ZapolskiSouth Carolina Stingrays
2012 Chad CostelloColorado Eagles
2011 Wes GoldieAlaska Aces
2010 Tyler DonatiElmira Jackals
2009 Kevin BakerFlorida Everblades
2008 David DesharnaisCincinnati Cyclones
2007 Brad SchellGwinnett Gladiators
2006 Jeff CampbellGwinnett Gladiators
2005 Scott GomezAlaska Aces
2004 Scott StirlingAtlantic City Boardwalk Bullies
2003 Buddy SmithArkansas RiverBlades
2002 Frederic CloutierLouisiana IceGators
2001 Scott KingCharlotte Checkers
2000 Andrew WilliamsonToledo Storm
1999 Chris ValicevicLouisiana IceGators
1998 Jamey HicksBirmingham Bulls
1997 Mike RossSouth Carolina Stingrays
1996 Hugo P. BelangerNashville Knights
1995 Vadim SlivchenkoWheeling Thunderbirds
1994 Joe FlanaganBirmingham Bulls
1993 Trevor JobeNashville Knights
1992 Phil BergerGreensboro Monarchs
1991 Stan DruliaKnoxville Cherokees
1990 Bill McDougallErie Panthers
1989 Daryl HarpeErie Panthers