Syracuse Crunch defenseman Matt Taormina and forward Yanni Gourde have been named to the All Star Classic roster this afternoon by the AHL.
In 26 games with the Crunch this season, Taormina has hit the back of the net a team-leading nine times to go along with 31 helpers. The veteran blue-liner has been a catalyst to this point in the season for a Syracuse roster that constantly seems to be in flux. This is the Providence College alum’s third straight selection to take part in the mid-season skills competition. He was selected in 2015 as a member of the Worcester sharks, and was also selected last season when the event came to Syracuse.
This event is Yanni Gourde’s first All Star selection in his professional career, and it comes in a year where he has done nothing but produce offense for Syracuse. After having a down year last season, the 25-year-old Quebec native has bounced back efficiently, scoring 10 goals and dishing out 16 assists for a total of 26 points so far this season. Gourde is on pace to smash his numbers from last season, and as a result has earned a well deserved trip to the PPL Center in Lehigh Valley for the All Star Classic.
The last representative of the Syracuse Crunch is head coach Benoit Groulx who will be behind the bench for the North Division in the 3-on-3 round robin tournament. Groulx has coached the Crunch straight to the top of the North Division despite an ever-changing roster.