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Moncada Underrated No More

March 26, 2020 - Ontario Hockey League (OHL) - North Bay Battalion News Release

Moncada won the vote with 28 points, ahead of fellow centre James Hardie of the Mississauga Steelheads with 22 points and left winger Austen Keating of the Ottawa 67's and centre Kyle MacLean of the Oshawa Generals, who were tied with 15.

The Coaches Poll in each of the two conferences sees every club submit one nominee in each of 20 categories. Coaches vote for the top three players in each category within their conference, with players receiving points on a 5-3-1 basis. Coaches may not vote for their own players, producing a maximum of 45 points for each winner.

Moncada, who turns 20 on May 29, enjoyed a career year, scoring a team-leading 34 goals and earning 26 assists for 60 points in 62 games. In 2018-19, he had eight goals and nine assists for 17 points in 68 games.

Moncada was named captain after left winger Brad Chenier was traded Jan. 9 to the Sudbury Wolves for fellow overager Shane Bulitka, who played both centre and left wing.

The Battalion acquired Moncada, a Markham, Ont., resident, with left winger Luke Burghardt in a June 27, 2017, trade with the Guelph Storm for centre Zach Poirier and defenceman Mark Shoemaker. Guelph chose Moncada in the third round, 42nd overall, of the 2016 OHL Priority Selection from the Toronto Red Wings minor midgets.

In the Eastern Conference, Ottawa led the way with eight players across 17 categories. Centre Marco Rossi, the OHL scoring champion, featured in six areas, being voted the conference's smartest player, best playmaker and best shootout shooter. Teammate Noel Hoefenmayer was a two-time top finisher, being recognized with the hardest shot and as the top offensive defenceman.

The Peterborough Petes had seven players covering 15 categories. Left winger Nick Robertson, the OHL's goal-scoring leader, was included in six fields, winning as most dangerous in the goal area and best shot. Centre Zach Gallant was voted best in faceoffs, finishing in the top three in that category for a fourth straight season.

Oshawa's MacLean appeared in four categories while being voted best defensive forward and top penalty killer. Centre Keean Washkurak of Mississauga was voted hardest worker for a second straight year, while teammate Thomas Harley, a defenceman, took best skater after placing second in 2018-19.

Christian Propp of the Kingston Frontenacs, a onetime member of the Battalion, finished third for best puckhandling goaltender with 16 points, behind Mississauga's Kai Edmonds with 26 and Zachary Roy of the Hamilton Bulldogs with 17.

In the Western Conference, left winger Cole Perfetti of the Saginaw Spirit led the league by finishing atop four categories, numbering smartest player, best playmaker, best stickhandler and best shootout shooter. Left winger Damien Giroux of Saginaw captured two categories, as hardest worker and best defensive forward.

The London Knights and Guelph each featured six different players.

The Owen Sound Attack's Brady Lyle, formerly of the Battalion, won the hardest shot category with 35 points and was third in voting for best offensive defenceman with 15. London's Ryan Merkley won with 41 points, followed by Jamie Drysdale of the Erie Otters with 22.

The OHL's regular season was cancelled March 18 because of the coronavirus pandemic, with a total of 56 games abandoned. The playoffs were cancelled Monday.

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