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Cougars’ Parascak and Lamb nominated for year-end WHL awards

Cougars Head Coach and GM Mark Lamb’s on-ice success is leading to off-ice accolades.

Lamb is the WHL’s BC Division Executive of the Year, as well as the BC Division’s Coach of the Year.

Lamb led the Cougars to the team’s best record (49-15-1-3) since the franchise moved to Prince George, as well as the team’s second BC Division title.

Lamb added depth this season by trading for wingers Borya Valis and Matteo Danis, and solidified the blueline by adding Chase Pauls.

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Lamb also traded for the league-leading goal scorer Zac Funk in January 2023, in exchange for Carter MacAdams and three picks.

In April last year, Lamb signed undrafted goaltender Joshua Ravensbergen to a WHL Scholarship and Development Agreement.

As a rookie, Ravensbergen became one of the top goaltenders in the WHL this season, finishing 4th in GAA (2.46), 7th in Save Percentage (.907), 7th in Wins (26-4-1), and 1st in shutouts (6, tied for most in a single-season among PG Cougars).

The other nominees are Chad Leslie (Swift Current), Jason Ripplinger (Moose Jaw), and Mike Johnston (Portland).

Even with Ravensbergen’s emergence, Cougars forward Terik Parascak is the WHL’s BC Division Nominee for the Jim Piggott Memorial Trophy as the league’s best rookie.

The 17-year-old led all WHL rookies in scoring with 105 points (43G-62A), good enough for eighth among all WHL players.

Parascak was the first WHL rookie to surpass the 100-point plateau since Pavel Brendl registered 134 points with the Calgary Hitmen in 1998-99.

The product of Lethbridge, Alberta earned WHL Rookie of the Month honours three times this season, and WHL Rookie of the Week honours six times.

Parascak, originally selected by the Cougars in the fourth round of the 2021 WHL Prospects Draft, is ranked 14th among North American skaters by NHL Central Scouting ahead of the 2024 NHL draft.

Parascak isn’t the only Northern BC connection in the Rookie of the Year nominees.

Saskatoon Blades goaltender Evan Gardner, a product of Fort St. John, is the nominee for the Eastern Division.

Garnder led all qualified WHL goaltenders in goals-against average (1.91) and save percentage (.927), while finishing second in shutouts (4).

The 6′ 2″ puckstopper went 21-5-0-1 through 30 appearances this season, making 671 saves on 724 shots.

Garnder is ranked 16th among North American goaltenders by NHL Central Scouting.

The US Division nominee is Julius Miettinen of the Everett Silvertips (31G-36A in 66GP), and the Central Division nominee is Gavin McKenna (34G-63A in 61 GP).

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