Photos: Jeff Pexton; Addison Blair/Peoria Rivermen; Michelle Jephcott
The Quad City Mallards have signed forwards Connor Gorman and Trever Hertz and defenseman Kevin Kirisits to tryout agreements, the Mallards announced today.
“I’ve heard very good things about Connor, Trever and Kevin and I’m looking forward to seeing them in training camp,” said Mallards coach Phil Axtell. “They’re all hard working guys who are going to come in and compete for roster spots.”
Gorman, 25, scored 22 goals and added 14 assists for 36 points while posting a plus/minus rating of plus-13 in 55 games as a rookie last season with the Southern Professional Hockey League’s Peoria Rivermen. The 5-foot-9, 175-pound Shrewsbury, Massachusetts native finished tied for sixth in the SPHL in goals while reaching the President’s Cup finals with the Rivermen.
Before turning professional, Gorman produced 34 goals, 34 assists and 68 points in 104 games over four Division III seasons at the State University of New York-Plattsburgh. Gorman set collegiate career highs in goals (12) and points (20) in 28 games as a junior while helping Plattsburgh to the State University of New York Athletic Conference regular season and tournament titles and a berth in the 2015 NCAA tournament. Gorman and the Cardinals repeated as SUNYAC regular season champions the following year.
Gorman arrived in Plattsburgh after winning the 2011-12 Eastern Junior Hockey League title with the New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs.
Hertz, 27, scored 14 goals, picked up 23 assists and totaled 37 points in 50 games with the Knoxville Ice Bears of the SPHL last season. The 6-foot, 185-pound Jaffray, British Columbia, native has recorded 47 goals, 74 assists and 121 points in 166 career SPHL games with the Ice Bears, Fayetteville FireAntz and Mississippi Surge.
Hertz spent four seasons at Utica College before breaking into the pro ranks with Mississippi at the end of the 2013-14 season. Hertz averaged nearly a point per game over his collegiate career. He rang up 44 goals and 58 assists for 102 points in 104 games and helped propel the Pioneers to a berth in the 2013 NCAA Division III Frozen Four and ECAC West regular season titles in both 2013 and 2014.
Hertz headed to Utica after spending three full junior seasons and part of a fourth campaign in the British Columbia Hockey League, where he skated for both the Quesnel Millionaires and Victoria Grizzlies.
Kirisits, a 25-year old rookie, was a teammate of Gorman’s in Peoria for three games late last season and skated alongside Hertz in Utica in 2013-14. The 6-foot-4, 225-pound Buffalo native last spring got his first taste of pro hockey and his first point (an assist) with the Rivermen immediately after finishing his senior season at Utica.
Kirisits served as the Pioneers’ captain during both his junior and senior years. He scored twice and notched six assists in 27 games last season. In total, he scored eight times and collected 22 assists for 30 points in 108 career collegiate games.
The Mallards will open their twenty-first season- and their fourth in the ECHL- on Friday, October 13 against the Toledo Walleye at the iWireless Center. Mallards 2017-18 season tickets are now available. Season ticket holders enjoy significant savings of the walk-up ticket price and receive a host of exclusive benefits. For more season ticket information, fans can contact the Mallards at 309-277-1364 or firstname.lastname@example.org.