08/03/2022 10:18 AM
Photos: Sean Flynn Photography/Quad City Mallards; Fayetteville FireAntz
The Quad City Mallards have re-signed forward Kyle Novak and have also signed forward Joe Kalisz for the 2017-18 season, the Mallards announced today.
Novak, 24, joined the Mallards after completing his college career at Western Michigan University in March and picked up one assist in six regular season games. The 5-foot-11, 188-pound O’Fallon, Missouri native scored once and added three assists in eight games for WMU last season. Novak totaled 14 goals, 17 assists and 31 points in 85 games over his four years as a Bronco.
“Kyle has the skill and playmaking abilities to be an exciting player for us,” said Mallards coach Phil Axtell. “I’m hoping his production in pro hockey will resemble his junior career.”
Before heading to Western Michigan, Novak spent two full junior seasons and part of a third with the United States Hockey League’s Green Bay Gamblers. In 2011-12, Novak helped the Gamblers to the USHL title. The following season he finished fourth in the league in points (77).
Kalisz, 26, scored 18 goals and added 17 assists for 35 points in 48 games with the Southern Professional Hockey League’s Fayetteville FireAntz as a rookie last season.
“Joe is a guy I’ve had on my radar since the spring of 2016 when he was playing at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point,” said Axtell. “He had a solid first year of pro hockey in the SPHL despite battling through an injury in the first half of the season and I expect him to excel when he plays with other good players. Joe’s a warrior who competes hard and plays heavy.”
Kalisz broke into the pro ranks after three standout seasons at Wisconsin-Stevens Point, where he was both a two-time Division III All-American and a two-time All-Conference selection. The 6-foot, 195-pound Davison, Michigan native reached the national championship game each of his three years as a Pointer and won the NCAA title with UWSP in 2016.
Kalisz was named to the 2015-16 All-American First Team as well as the All-Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference First Team after finishing tied for third in the nation in assists (29) and fifth in points (42). He earned All-American (second team) and All-Conference (first team) honors for the first time in 2014-15. That campaign saw Kalisz lead the Pointers in goals (18) and finish tied for the team lead in points (32).
Kalisz played three seasons of junior hockey for the North American Hockey League’s St. Louis Bandits and- briefly- the USHL’s Sioux City Musketeers before arriving at Stevens Point. Kalisz was named the 2011-12 NAHL Most Valuable Player after leading the league in points (91) and finishing tied for the league lead in goals (40).
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.