Sydney Bears’ forward Tommy Steven has been awarded the Skater’s Network AIHL Player of the Week award for round six. Steven is the second Bear to win the award this season, joining Michael Schlamp who won the award for round two.
The award is acknowledgement for an outstanding start to the season for the 24-year-old from Rotorua, New Zealand. Steven is the only AIHL player to have scored in every one of his team’s games so far this year.
Last weekend, Steven collected four points against the Melbourne Ice on Saturday, scoring two goals, including the game winner, and collecting two assists. The following afternoon Steven tallied an assist on the Bear’s first goal of the game and scored an insurance marker late in the third period, his 12th goal of the season.
Speaking about what the award means to him, Steven said, “It’s great, it’s really good. I try not to think too much about it because we have a long season to go. It’s a good time to get a little pat on the back.”
Steven is part of a newly formed top-line with imports Joshua Lammon and Ace Cowans. Although the trio have only been together for three games, the line has continued powering the Bears’ offence.
The third Bears’ goal against the Melbourne Ice highlights the cohesion between the three. Steven got to the loose puck in the offensive zone on an aggressive forecheck and cycled the puck to Lammon.
It appeared Lammon would run out of room and skate behind the net, but after drawing the defenceman he made a deft touch pass to Cowans who was wide open between the hash marks. Cowans finished five-hole for the go-ahead 3-2 goal.
“That was only the second game I played with Josh,” Steven commented. “We have so much more time to build our chemistry, but the chemistry already is immaculate so I’m looking forward to the rest of the season.”
Steven took the time to comment on his two linemates, Joshua Lammon and Ace Cowans.
“He’s [Joshua] a really nice guy, he’s an import so he brings a lot of experience. He helps out a lot off the ice, especially when we go through video. And he’s so good with faceoffs, he gives us the puck straight away.”
On Cowans, Steven said, “I can’t say enough about him, where do I begin? He’s just so nice. Either he’s shooting and scoring, or passing to set someone else up. Every time he has the puck, something is going to happen.”
Following the announcement by the AIHL on Wednesday that Steven had been named Player of the Week, Steven said that Ryan Annesley announced it in the group chat, and the entire team congratulated him at practice that night.
“I even got dinner out of Funesy [Brian Funes],” Steven laughed.
Looking ahead to the rest of the season, Steven stressed that him and the team are focused on continuing their fine form.
“We’re first place,” Steven mentioned, “everything’s going well, but now everyone’s hunting for us. We’ve got to keep going and not get complacent.”
You can catch the Bears in action this weekend against the CBR Brave on the road in Canberra. Puck drop is at 5:15 pm, and if you’re not travelling to the capital, the game is available on AIHL TV.
The Bears' next home game will be Saturday, June 3, at 5 pm against the Adelaide Adrenaline. The team needs you, our seventh player, at the rink to lift the team. Click here to get your tickets, check out our membership packages, and see you at the rink!
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