Wedgewood’s record-breaking rookie season

Scott Wedgewood spent the majority of his first pro season with the Trenton Titans. (Candice Monhollan)

Scott Wedgewood spent the majority of his first pro season with the Trenton Titans. (Candice Monhollan)

It was only five months ago when goaltender Scott Wedgewood made his pro debut with the Trenton Titans in a 6-2 win over rival Reading Royals, but to him, that was almost ages ago.

“I played a lot, pretty much to sum up my first year,” Wedgewood said. “I’ve had four-in-fives, three-in-threes – things I haven’t done in juniors.”

Wedgwood hit the 50-game mark this season for only the second time in his career.

Playing in 48 games with the Titans and three with the Albany Devils of the AHL, that number is only eclipsed by the 55 he appeared in with the Plymouth Whalers of the OHL in 2010-11.

“[The OHL] schedule is a weekend schedule,” Wedgewood said. “You play three-in-three, but I’d get Friday and Sunday and the other guy would play on Saturday, so you get a little bit of a break, then you get a week off. This year, the body is kind of feeling it.”

It may be quite a workload for the 20 year old, but he relishes any chance he can get to be in goal.

“I want to play,” Wedgewood said. “Every goalie wants to. I don’t think I’d give up an opportunity to get into that net. To play this many has been very beneficial for my career and obviously is a lot of fun.”

Getting the call this many times had been a learning curve for him, not only in what it’s like to play at a higher level and handle exhaustion, but also how to take care of himself every single day.

“I think the fatigue is a little different [in the pros],” Wedgewood said. “I’ve eaten a lot more and probably weigh more than I ever have in my career, but it’s just one of those things where you can’t really lack there – it’s all about energy. Some foods work and some don’t, and how to prepare night in, night out, night in, night out has been a bit of a challenge.”

When New Jersey Devils goaltender Martin Brodeur went down with an injury, Maxime Clermont of the Elmira Jackals was originally called-up to fill the void left in Albany.

“It is what it is,” Wedgewood said. “I knew I was confident with myself and they wanted me to play [in Trenton]. In the Devils organization, it’s about playing time and they don’t want to rush things.”

But it wasn’t long until Wedgewood received his call-up on March 5 once Clermont was returned to the Jackals.

He admitted to it being a nerve-wracking experience waiting for the call.

“I got a little bit of a heads up that probably wouldn’t happen, so that calmed the nerves a bit,” Wedgewood said. “I called my parents right after and they came down to see my first two games there, which was really nice and obviously important to them.”

Not only were his parents there to watch their son debut in the AHL, but they also witnessed him set a franchise record with the Devils by becoming the first goaltender to win his first two starts.

“To get the two wins and set a franchise record, that was a big thing for me,” Wedgewood said. “It just helps the confidence. It was also fun for my family and friends.”

Wedgewood played a total of three games for the Devils, going 2-1with a 3.27 goals-against average and .889 save percentage.

Brodeur’s eventual return to the NHL sent Wedgewood back to the Titans on March 21.

“Getting the call-up to the AHL was big to prove I can play up there was also very important to me,” Wedgwood said. “To come back down [to Trenton] and finish it off is almost to me, just nice.”

The native of Brampton, Ont., stepped right back into his starter role with the Titans and played four of the remaining six games.

To add to what he accomplished with the Devils, Wedgwood also broke three franchise records with the Titans and tied one.

He broke the record for most minutes played in a season (2,741), most shots faced in a season (1,476), most saves made in a season (1,329) and tied Scott Stirling with 48 appearances in a season.

“You just put that in the back of your head,” Wedgewood said. “It’s a little selfish, but it’s fun to get those things and to make an impact for a team is always huge.”

Wedgewood can take a lot away from his first pro year.

Despite missing the playoffs with the Titans, he enjoyed his time spent with the team.

“I can’t thank everyone enough that’s come into my career and helped me along this season,” Wedgewood said. “I spent most of the year with a lot of these guys. I know we made a lot of changes this year, but this is pretty much my team. It’s going to be tough to say goodbye to everybody, but it’s nice that you get that opportunity.”

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Categories: ECHL, Features, Ice Hockey, Sports

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