MUSKEGON, MI- The United States Hockey League announced Monday that Anthony Del Gaizo of the Muskegon Lumberjacks has been named the 2018 USHL Player of the Year as determined by a vote of League general managers.
Del Gaizo, a native of Basking Ridge, NJ, led the USHL in scoring this season with 72 points (40G, 32A) and played in all 60 of Muskegon's regular season games. He led the USHL in goals (40) and tallied at least one point in 46 of the 60 games he played. Additionally, Del Gaizo recorded multiple points 21 times this season, including a span from Jan. 5 to Jan. 15 where he had multi-point efforts in five straight contests.
After starting the season with just three points (1G, 2A) in his first six games of the season, Del Gaizo consistently stuffed the stat sheet for the remainder of the year, earning at least one point in 45 of the final 54 games of the year. He recorded a six-game point streak from Dec. 31 through Jan. 15, with 15 points in that span (9G, 6A). He then exploded for a 13-game point streak from Mar. 3 through Apr. 7, with 19 points in that stretch (7G, 12A), and also had at least one point in 16 of his final 18 games of the regular season, an incredible mark of consistency. Del Gaizo finished his USHL career with exactly 100 points (53G, 47A) in 157 games from 2015-18.
Del Gaizo finishes an illustrious Lumberjacks career second all-time in goals (53), fourth all-time in points (100), second all-time in games played (157) and fourth all-time in penalty minutes (225). Anthony is the third Lumberjack to score 40 goals in a season, and only the fifth USHL player to reach that plateau since the league joined the Tier One ranks in 2002. Del Gaizo’s 72 points are the second-most ever scored by a Lumberjack in a single season.
Del Gaizo is committed to the University of Massachusetts and will join his brother Marc Del Gaizo, an NHL Central Scouting-ranked blueliner, in Amherst this upcoming fall. Anthony joined Muskegon during the 2015-16 campaign as an undrafted free agent, and previously played for the New Jersey Rockets (EHL) and Delbarton School (USHS).
Del Gaizo is the first Muskegon player to be named USHL Player of the Year since current University of Minnesota forward Rem Pitlick won the award in 2015-16 and joins Pitlick as the only two players in the history of the Lumberjacks to be named USHL Player of the Year.