Kearney, NE. – For the first time in his USHL career, Storm goaltender Connor Hopkins has been named the USHL’s “Goaltender of the Week”. Hopkins appeared in both of Tri-City’s home wins at the Viaero Center this past weekend. On Saturday, Hopkins made eleven saves on twelve shots in just over six minutes of game time in relief of Todd Scott, who left the game in the 3rd period due to a penalty. Tri-City recorded a 3-1 victory over the Fargo Force to win the head-to-head season series. On Sunday, Hopkins turned away twenty-three of Sioux City’s twenty-four shots on net to record his seventh victory of the season in goal. Hopkins’ Goals Against Average (2.27) is 2nd best among qualified USHL goaltenders this season. Today’s announcement marks the fifth time this year that a Storm goaltender has collected the USHL’s “Goaltender of the Week” honors.
Connor Hopkins, 20, of Malden, Massachusetts was selected 124th overall by the Storm in the 8th Round of the 2016 USHL Phase I Draft and appeared in five games with the team as an affiliate list callup during the 2017-2018 season. Hopkins made his USHL debut on March 2nd, 2018 in Tri-City’s 4-1 loss to the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders. His first USHL win was recorded the following night in the Storm’s 5-2 road victory over the Des Moines Buccaneers. Following his first stint with the Storm, Hopkins appeared in thirty-seven games with the West Kelowna Warriors (BCHL) during the 2018-2019 season. He produced a record of 16-19-1, a Goals Against Average (GAA) of 3.26, and Save Percentage of .912%. Hopkins spent the 2019-2020 season with the Yale University Bulldogs (ECAC) but did not appear in any games after suffering a season-ending injury prior to the start of the season. Since joining the Storm during the 2020-2021 regular season, Hopkins has posted a 7-3-1-0 record in net. His .904 SV% is currently 3rd best in the USHL. He posted his first career USHL shutout on February 14th in Tri-City’s 2-0 road shut out of the Waterloo Black Hawks. He completed play this past weekend making thirty-four saves on thirty-six shots.
“It is definitely an honor to be named the USHL’s Goaltender of the Week. I am grateful to have had the opportunity to come back and play for the Storm this season and we have an awesome group of guys here this season. To get the sweep on “Concrete Cares Weekend” on the painted ice was something special. I thought the team played extremely well this weekend. We knew what we had to do last week during practice with how tight the standings are in this conference, so to come out and get four points against those two teams was huge. The guys were able to let Todd and I see the puck all weekend, so we are grateful to them since it makes our jobs a lot easier. I know my success is a testament to everyone doing the right thing in front of me as well. This week we are back to work, with another three in three this weekend, there are a lot of points on the line during a crucial time in the season. We come to the rink every day ready to compete and know it is another day to get better. We’re hoping to carry this momentum into next weekend on home ice.” - Goaltender Connor Hopkins
“Connor’s maturity both on the ice and in our locker room has been instrumental to our team’s success so far this season. He provides a calming influence for our group every time he’s in the net.” - Goaltending Coach Matt Zaba