USPHL Elite 2023-24 Midwest Division Players Of The Month: February 2024

Summaries By Joshua Boyd / 


Selection Process: The league media office sends top candidates to divisional coaches for review and coaches either approve or challenge the nominations.


Forward: Rocco Bifano, Chicago Cougars 

Bifano (‘03/Chicago, Ill.) came in as a second-year junior player and had a fantastic output in terms of registering 52 points in 41 games, an immense improvement on his nine points from his previous junior season. During February, Bifano scored nine goals and added 14 assists for 23 points in 13 games, registering points in all but one game last month. He finished the regular season on a nine-game point streak. 


Forward: Lukas Kurowski, Chicago Cougars 

Kurowski (‘05/Elk Grove Village, Ill.) finished on an eight-game scoring streak of his own as part of a 17-point month of February. He scored nine goals and added eight assists in 10 games, helping him to a total of 46 points in 36 games in his first junior season. Additionally, he was called up for four games with the Premier Cougars between Jan. 31 – when he scored his first Premier goal – and Feb. 9. Kurowski is a local product of the Northwest Chargers that plays out of Mount Prospect, Ill. 


Forward: Peter Spiridonakos, Metro Jets

Spiridonakos (‘05/Laval, Que.) finished third in USPHL Elite scoring with 83 points in 38 Elite games this year, which included a run of 5-11-16 in his nine games of February. The Spiridonakos twins – Peter and John, who scored 64 points to also place in the Elite Top 10 – were huge pickups for the Jets in 2024-25 and they’re expected to be a key part of their push to earn their first-ever Elite Nationals berth. Peter got call-ups to play in 10 Premier games this year, nine with the MJDP – in which he scored five points – and one with the Metro Jets in January. 


Defense: Jack Gardner, Chicago Cougars 

Gardner put up a fantastic first junior season as an ‘06 blueliner, as he registered 31 points in 38 games during this season. He finished with a 3-9-12 line in February’s 13 games. Gardner also ended up being one of the leaders in the postseason by scoring four points in the three-game series against the ultimately victorious Fort Wayne Spacemen, including the OT game-winner in Game 2 of the series. Gardner is poised for a very bright junior future. 


Defense: Isaac Bunk, Motor City Gamblers 

Another exciting ‘06 prospect for future junior seasons, Bunk (Leonard, Mich.) was a great contributor all year for the first-year Gamblers Elite squad, putting up 24 points 38 games. He also got seven games up with the Premier Gamblers, and registered seven assists in games as recent as late January, so this may very well be his only Elite year. Like his Cougars counterpart Gardner, Bunk was also among the leading scorers in his team’s postseason series, scoring three points in two games against the Decatur Blaze, who won the series. 


Goaltender: Johnny Augusta, Chicago Crush 

Augusta (‘04/Medinah, Ill.) stood tall during his 200 minutes of action in February, winning all three starts by making 87 saves on 91 shots. This included 25 saves in his first junior shutout on Feb. 17 against Decatur. His February save percentage of .956 and goals against average of 1.20 GAA, both contributed to season-long numbers of 2.27 and .924 that put him into the top 15 of all Elite goalies. The Crush will face the Fort Wayne Spacemen this weekend for one of the two USPHL Elite National Championships berths from the Midwest Division.