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Canadiennes Season Review: Sydney Aveson

Montreal's backup goaltender flew under the radar in her rookie year, but played very well

Shanna Martin

Would it surprise you that Charline Labonté, the CWHL's goaltender of the year, didn't even have the best numbers on her own team?

Well it's true. Sydney Aveson, in her first season in the CWHL after being drafted in the sixth round of the 2014 CWHL Draft out of Plattsburgh State, had a better goals against average and save percentage than the Canadiennes star.

There is an important games played caveat. Aveson played in five games and compiled a 4-1 record, her only loss coming against the Brampton Thunder while Labonté was nursing an injury. She had a GAA of 1.22 (compared to Labonté's 1.52) and a .930 save percentage (compared to Labonté's .925). Labonté started 19 regular season games.

These numbers are also skewed because Labonté generally played all the games against the league's tougher opponents but Aveson has a history of performing at a high level.

In her final season in the NCAA (Division III) in 2013-14, she had a 22-1-1 record, 0.57 GAA and .938 save percentage. And of her 22 wins, 14 were shutouts and in her 24 games she allowed 14 goals. Her one loss was a 1-0 game against Elmira. She was named National Player of the Year.

Aveson is a California native who played university hockey in Plattsburgh, New York. Plattsburgh is less than two hours from Montreal and she predicted she'd play for Montreal after graduation.

All of Aveson's regular season games were on the road, and her best performance was a 3-1 win against the Brampton Thunder. The game came in December when Labonté was out with a lower body injury. The game came off of a 4-0 loss where she also played.

She made 18 of 19 saves in the win. She collected her first two shutouts in a weekend series against the Boston Blades on back to back days. Her first CWHL start was a 5-2 win against the Toronto Furies. She had equipment problems and actually missed a little over two minutes of the game.

Aveson had to beat out three other goaltenders for the backup job in training camp. She was very good in pre-season play to win the competition. It's not easy committing yourself when you are behind a goaltender like Labonté but Aveson, who travels in from the United States for practices and games, was definitely up to the task.