TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - Over the weekend Toledo Walleye goaltender Jake Paterson tied Jeff Lerg for a Walleye record most single season wins (32) between the pipes.
It's a record Paterson says wouldn't be possible if it weren't for the quality defense-men in front of him.
"I think it speaks to the guys in front of me," Paterson said. "Obviously, you know, goaltender stats and wins they're not possible without all the guys in front of me. Obviously we have a lot of really good D-men, you know, solid forwards that come back in the zone. So it's a pretty similar team to last year, so you know everyone knows where everyone's going to be on the ice and for a goalie it's nice for me to know exactly what the D-men are going to do out there. So I can't do it without them and obviously it's been a good regular season, but, you know, the fun all starts once playoff time comes around, so, you know, we're all looking forward to playoffs."
Paterson has already passed Lerg to set the record for minutes played (2,680), shutouts (6), and ties him for most appearances (45).
"I think we could see towards the end of last season that this could happen, and it was all up to him," said Dan Watson, Walleye head coach. "He had a great off-season, he came in mentally ready. I think he knew what the goal-tending situation was with Detroit signing six. So I think mentally he was already in Toledo, which, you know, that's great for us, it surely helps when somebody is comfortable. And then with an injury, with Jimmy Howard's injury, he knew it was going to be his show, all those starts in a row, which he has done in junior. So I think again it just gave him that confidence, made him comfortable within net, and he's a competitor. He wants to win every single game he's in, and he's done that, he's given us a chance to win every single start he's had this year, and we look forward to seeing him in the playoffs."
Paterson is just three wins away from tying the ECHL single season record, currently held by Nick Vitucci (35) during the 1994-95 season.
Paterson and the Walleye get ready for game one of their final six of the regular season before playoffs. Toledo hosts Indy Friday night at the Huntington Center. Puck d rop is at 7:15 p.m.