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 Ontario Hockey League

Attack's George Wins Bobby Smith Trophy and Ivan Tennant Memorial Award for Academic Excellence

May 13, 2024 - Ontario Hockey League (OHL) News Release

Toronto, Ont. - The Ontario Hockey League today announced that draft eligible Owen Sound Attack goaltender Carter George is the 2023-24 recipient of the Bobby Smith Trophy, awarded annually to the OHL's Scholastic Player of the Year. The 17-year-old netminder also comes away as this year's recipient of the Ivan Tennant Memorial Award presented to the League's top academic high-school student.

After never winning the award until 2023, the Attack franchise has back-to-back Bobby Smith Trophy recipients as George follows teammate Colby Barlow with excellence in the classroom, putting together a 93.8 percent average across six Grade 12 university-level courses at Owen Sound District Secondary School. George's transcript was headlined by a 99 percent grade in Business Co-Op, a 97 percent in Organizational Business and 95 percent finishes in both English and International Business.

"It's truly an honour to receive these awards," said George. "I believe that to be an elite athlete your habits, character and mindset apply to all aspects of your life, not just hockey. That is why I feel it is just as important for me to strive for a high level of success in my academics. Balancing hockey with my academics has helped me to become more disciplined, resilient and has taught me time management. I'd like to recognize and thank the Attack organization, especially Sarah Rowe, for helping me grow on and off the ice."

George was the OHL's busiest netminder this past season, stopping a league-high 1,744 shots, the most by an Owen Sound goaltender since 2000-01 (Cory Roberts, 1,792). He played to a record of 23-21-6-3 with a 3.30 goals-against average, .907 save percentage and four shutouts, a figure tied for the League-lead. He was also the OHL's Rookie of the Month for October.

George becomes the OHL's first dual winner of the Bobby Smith and Ivan Tennant awards since Erie Otters defenceman Adam Pelech last earned both honours in 2011-12.

"Being able to say that you are both the Bobby Smith and Ivan Tennant award winner in the same year says a lot about the individual who could win that," said Attack General Manager Dale DeGray. "Carter George is one of those young men capable of just about anything he puts his mind to. I don't think anyone in the organization is surprised that he has achieved this feat. Carter has proven to be a leader both on and off the ice since completing his first game with us two years ago. Congratulations to Carter on this incredible accomplishment."

George joins four other former Attack players as the latest to claim the Ivan Tennant Memorial Award, following Cal Uens (2022), Logan LeSage (2020), Mack Guzda (2019, '18) and Andrew Shorkey (2007).

George's 23 wins are the most by a rookie goaltender in Attack franchise history. The former third-round (53rd overall) pick in the 2022 OHL Priority Selection from Thunder Bay, Ont. is also North America's second-ranked goaltender eligible for the 2024 NHL Draft as listed by NHL Central Scouting. George recently backstopped Canada's National Men's Under-18 Team to a gold medal finish in Espoo, Finland earlier this month.

"Carter is an extremely hard-working individual who has always put forth his best effort, on and off the ice," said Sarah Rowe, the Attack's Academic Advisor. "In fact, he is always interested to find out whether his save percentage or academic average is higher! It is fitting he is being recognized with both the Bobby Smith and Ivan Tennant awards. His teachers describe him as a conscientious student and a leader who is the first to step in and assist his teammates in the classroom. His personal desire to not only succeed on the ice but in the classroom as well has resulted in his exceptional academic results. Congratulations Carter!"

Each year the Bobby Smith Trophy is presented to the OHL Scholastic Player of the Year who best combines high standards of play and academic excellence. The trophy is in honour of Bobby Smith, a former Ottawa 67's star who exhibited a standard of excellence in both of these areas. Past recipients since the award was first presented in 1980 include three-time winner Dustin Brown (Guelph 2001-03), back-to-back winner Connor McDavid (Erie, 2014, '15) and other standouts in Steven Stamkos (Sarnia 2007), Ryan Ellis (Windsor 2008), Matt Duchene (Brampton 2009), Dougie Hamilton (Niagara 2011) and Cole Perfetti (Saginaw 2020).

Next in line for the Bobby Smith Trophy was Saginaw Spirit forward Michael Misa who finished as the runner-up followed by 2024 NHL Draft prospect Jett Luchanko of the Guelph Storm, who placed third in the process.

George will be the OHL's nominee for the Canadian Hockey League Scholastic Player of the Year Award, presented at the CHL Awards Ceremony that will be held at the 2024 Memorial Cup presented by Dow from May 24 to June 2 in Saginaw, Michigan. George will be formally presented with both the Bobby Smith Trophy and the Ivan Tennant Memorial Award at the OHL's Awards Ceremony on Wednesday, May 2 at the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto.

2023-24 OHL Scholastic Team Nominees:

Barrie Colts - Jaiden Newton

Brantford Bulldogs - Jake O'Brien

Erie Otters - Matthew Schaefer

Flint Firebirds - Jimmy Lombardi

Guelph Storm - Jett Luchanko

Kingston Frontenacs - Mason Vaccari

Kitchener Rangers - Cameron Reid

London Knights - Sam Dickinson

Mississauga Steelheads - Lucas Karmiris

Niagara IceDogs - Kevin He

North Bay Battalion - Nolan Laird

Oshawa Generals - Ben Danford

Ottawa 67's - Frankie Marrelli

Owen Sound Attack - Carter George

Peterborough Petes - Ryder McIntyre

Saginaw Spirit - Michael Misa

Sarnia Sting - Nick Surzycia

Soo Greyhounds - Landon Miller

Sudbury Wolves - Nathan Villeneuve

Windsor Spitfires - Liam Greentree

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