Pistons forward Drew Worrad was recognized by the MJHL for all of his volunteer work in the community with the MJHL Pork Peak Performer of the Month for March.
He becomes the third Piston to win the award this season, with goaltender Matt Radomsky and defenceman Tristan Culleton being the other two. “It’s nice to be recognized,” Worrad said. “I’ve been able to spend a lot of time in the community this past month, and it’s just something I like doing.”
Worrad has been active in the community this season for the Pistons, volunteering his time throughout the campaign volunteering with a grade 2/3 class at Steinbach Christian School along with Pistons defenceman Jaret Lalli. “Drew and Jaret were eager and willing volunteers right from our first meeting,” said Marjorie Block, principal of Steinbach Christian School. “They were very conscientious and were great at communicating directly with teachers regarding their schedules.”
Block says that Worrad came a few extra times outside of his regular schedule to connect with students, whether that was playing floor hockey or helping out with Christmas celebrations. “Drew is very adept at getting student’s attention, explaining the event and guiding them through it,” she said.
When the grade 2 students were asked to give their thoughts on having him around, they described him as nice, kind, patient, gentle, good at explaining, and someone that always give high fives. “He taught us that school is important and that you can play hockey and still be interested in school,” one student said. “He’s someone who followed all of the classroom rules,” another student mentioned. “He even put his hands on his head when Ms. Fast wanted our attention!”
“It’s just so cool to see how much (the students) look up to us,” Worrad added. “Time and time again you just see how excited they are to have you come into class, and they make you feel like a celebrity. But I like just being able to help them out and play a nice role in their lives when they are at school.”
Worrad was also named as ambassador for Ste. Anne Co-op this season, and has been out in the local Co-op gas bars filling up vehicles with gas, and also washing windows. He says this has been a great opportunity to get to know Pistons fans as well. “It was a big honour being chosen to represent Ste. Anne Co-op,” he said. “It’s been fun seeing all the fans that roll into the gas station each day, and recognize the jersey as well as being able to show their gratitude and let us know how much they’re cheering for us.”
The Pistons set a goal of 1,500 hours of volunteer time in the community this season, which Worrad recognized this as something new to him coming to Steinbach. “I’ve really been able to see the benefits of it,” he said. “It’s so cool to be able to see how happy people are to see you out in the community, and how grateful they are that we are giving back. They always like it to see hockey players away from the rink, so it’s cool to be able to go out and do that.”
In addition, goaltender Matthew Thiessen was named the MJHL MGEU Goaltender of the Month for March. Thiessen has statistically been the best goaltender in the playoffs, sporting a 1.38 GAA, a .950 SV%, and posting 3 shutouts thus far.
Bradley Schoonbaert, Mark Taraschuk, and Austin Heidemann were named runner-ups for Player of the Month, Defenceman of the Month, and Rookie of the Month respectively.