BY RANDY SCHULTZ –
(This is the fourth, and final part, of a four-part series listing all of the award winners. Today: Individual and Team winners).
The Second Annual Hasek’s Heroes Western New York High School Hockey Awards ceremony, originally scheduled to be held at the Key Bank Center in downtown Buffalo, became a live streamed event back in July.
The ceremonies were emceed by Brian Duff of the Buffalo Sabres’ television broadcast team. The awards were presented by present or former NHL players from the Western New York area.
The Team of the Year Award was presented to the Williamsville South Team in Division IV of the Boys Federation Hockey League. The team finished with an 18-5-0 record, which included a 15-1-0 mark in D4 play. Sabres GM Kevyn Adams presented the award.
Mike and Amy Lesakowski, founders of the 11-Day Power Play, Inc. received the Hasek’s Heroes Impact Award. The event was designed to raise money for cancer research programs. Former NHL forward, Tim Kennedy, announced the award.
The West Seneca Mini Bruins Mini Mites were honored as the Youth Hockey Team of the Year. This group of five year-olds took their teammate, Owen Chase, who was diagnosed with a type of Leukemia early in their season, and made sure he was included in all team games, practices and activities. It was quite an undertaking by the team, but was highly successful. Former Sabres forward Patrick Kaleta, presented the award.
The Second Annual Korey Award went to the man the award is named for: Fred Korey. Back in 2001 Korey, along with Hall of Fame goaltender, Dominik Hasek, began Hasek’s Heroes. Unfortunately, Korey passed after losing his battle with ALS. The award was presented by Jim Hornung, Jr., President of the Hasek’s Heroes Board of Directors.
The WNY High School Hockey Awards was established in 2018/2019 by Hasek’s Heroes to recognize and celebrate outstanding female and male student athletes who have represented their high schools playing at the Varsity Club or Federation level throughout the season. The awards also celebrate teams and individuals who have made meaningful impact in the community, both on and off the ice.
The Mission of Hasek’s Heroes is to provide Western New York children in need the foundations of athletic, academic and character development within a fun and rewarding hockey-centered program.
In addition to fostering athletic skills and engaging youth in recreational activities throughout the hockey season, Hasek’s Heroes provides team building and leadership skills during both the on-ice and off-ice components of the program.