Vitek Vanecek Wins MVP Of 2020 AHL All-Star Challenge

Washington Capitals goaltending prospect Vitek Vanecek had a stellar evening in Ontario, California on Monday night. Vanecek allowed just two goals over four games in the four-team round-robin AHL All-Star Challenge, as Vanecek and the Atlantic Division took home top honors.

Vanecek and the Atlantic Division beat the Central Division in the tournament’s final game. Vanecek allowed just two goals in four games of three-on-three play, making numerous spectacular saves.

Vanecek would even make one excellent stop without his stick, which was lost and discarded in the left corner during a previous play.

Vanecek accepted the MVP award immediately following the final game. Vanecek told the crowd that he likes the three-on-three hockey format. He was asked about sharing the experience with Bears teammate Matt Moulson. “He’s great guy, good player, and he’s legend, you know? He’s captain.”

This was Vanecek’s second consecutive AHL All-Star Classic appearance. The native of Havlickuv Brod, Czech Republic was Hershey’s lone representative at the 2019 AHL All-Star Classic in Springfield, Massachusetts. The goaltender stood tall in the 3-on-3 All-Star Challenge, recording the best statistics of any netminder, stopping 18 of 20 shots in last year’s event.

Vanecek is in his fourth season with Hershey, going 13-8-1-1 this season in 23 games, recording a 2.45 goals against average, good for 7th in the league

Bears’ Matt Mouslon accepted the winner’s award for the Atlantic Division, allowing for an all Hershey Bears hardware photo opportunity.

Moulson recorded a goal and an assist for the Atlantic Division over the four games. As the playing captain for the Eastern Conference, Moulson raised the championship trophy after the Atlantic Division’s deciding 3-1 win over the Central Division.

This was Moulson’s first All-Star appearance. The veteran skated in his 1,000th professional game last Friday at Springfield. He leads Hershey with 15 goals this season, collecting 30 points in 46 games.

Vanecek, Mouslon and the Bears will resume play this Friday when they visit the Sound Tigers in Bridgeport. Puck drop is 7:00 pm.

By Jon Sorensen

About Jon Sorensen

Jon has been a Caps fan since day one, attending his first game at the Capital Centre in 1974. His interest in the Caps has grown over the decades and included time as a season ticket holder. He has been a journalist covering the team for 10+ years, primarily focusing on analysis, analytics and prospect development.
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