07/27/2017 10:13 AM
Photos: Standout Imagery; Daily Gazette
The Quad City Mallards have signed forwards Kenny Brooks and Michael Pontarelli for the 2017-18 season, the Mallards announced today.
Brooks, 25, scored six goals and added six assists for 12 points in 44 games as a rookie last season. The 6-foot-1, 195-pound Las Vegas native spent the bulk of the campaign with the Colorado Eagles after playing a single game for the Atlanta Gladiators.
“Kenny is an excellent addition to the Flock who makes us even deeper up front and who will play Mallard hockey,” said Mallards coach Phil Axtell. “He’s a hard-working, humble guy who’s hungry to start his second year as a pro after getting his first taste last season.”
Brooks played four seasons of college hockey at Penn State before turning professional. He scored 14 goals, recorded 32 assists and totaled 46 points in 117 games as a Nittany Lion. As a senior, Brooks posted collegiate career highs in goals (8), assists (15) and points (23) while helping Penn State to the first 20-win season in school history. Brooks was named to the Academic All-Big Ten Team after both his sophomore and junior years.
Brooks arrived at Penn State on the heels of a three-year stint in the junior ranks with the United States Hockey League’s Tri-City Storm. He produced 31 goals, 54 assists and 85 points in 165 career USHL games.
Pontarelli, 23, made an immediate impact when he joined the Norfolk Admirals in April by ringing up five points (two goals and three assists) in his first five pro games.
Pontarelli signed with the Admirals upon completing his senior season at Union College. The 5-foot-8, 175-pound Laval, Quebec native scored two goals and pocketed five assists in 23 games last season as the Dutchmen won the ECAC Hockey regular season title and reached the NCAA tournament.
“Michael produced great numbers in junior hockey and then had success with an extremely deep college team before getting a tryout in Norfolk and making the most of his opportunity,” said Mallards coach Phil Axtell. “I see him as someone with the potential to be a 200-foot player who can excel in the offensive zone.”
As a freshman, Pontarelli helped Union to the first national championship in school history. That milestone season was Pontarelli’s most productive as a Dutchman. He scored ten goals and notched 13 assists for 23 points in 39 games as Union also took the 2013-14 ECAC Hockey regular season and tournament titles.
Over his four years at Union, Pontarelli totaled 21 goals, 30 assists and 51 points in 121 games. He was named to the ECAC Hockey All-Academic Team each of the last three seasons.
Union’s NCAA crown was Pontarelli’s second title in as many seasons. He was named Player of the Year in Canadian junior A hockey after propelling the Cornwall Colts to the Central Canada Hockey League’s Bogart Cup championship in 2012-13. Pontarelli piled up a league-leading 52 goals and 107 points in 53 games on the way to also earning the CCHL Most Valuable Player Award and First All-Star Team honors.
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 email@example.com.