By: Mallards Communications Staff
Photos: Kyra Vidas; Niagara Athletic Communications

The Quad City Mallards have signed rookie defensemen Mark Esshaki and Kevin Patterson to tryout agreements, the Mallards announced today.

“I’m eager to see what Mark and Kevin bring to training camp. They are both hungry for a roster spot and are preparing to earn one. They are really going to help raise the level of competition in camp,” said Mallards coach Phil Axtell.

Esshaki, 25, played 15 games for the Norfolk Admirals last spring just after completing his senior season at Lake Forest College. The 6-foot, 190-pound West Bloomfield, Michigan native set collegiate career highs in goals (4), assists (14) and points (18) in 26 games while acting as an assistant captain for Lake Forest last year. Esshaki totaled eight goals, 21 assists and 29 points in 61 games over his four seasons in college hockey.

Esshaki arrived at Lake Forest after splitting two seasons in the junior ranks among the St. Louis Bandits, Jamestown Ironmen and Kalamazoo Jr. K-Wings of the North American Hockey League.

Patterson, 25, scored once and picked up a pair of assists in 35 games as a senior at Niagara University last season. The 6-foot, 188-pound Colorado Springs native served as an assistant captain for the Purple Eagles each of the last two years.

Patterson, who produced nine goals, 18 assists and 27 points in 124 games in his four seasons at Niagara, was a four-time Atlantic Hockey All-Academic Team selection and was named Atlantic Hockey Student-Athlete of the Year for both 2013-14 and 2014-15

Patterson skated for the Topeka Roadrunners in the NAHL for two seasons before heading to Niagara.

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

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