Mavericks Bolster Blueline, Sign Three Defensemen
INDEPENDENCE, Missouri - Missouri Mavericks' Head Coach Scott Hillman announced Wednesday the Central Hockey League (CHL) club has signed defensemen Jared Lavender, Sean Perkins and Mark Van Vliet for the team's inaugural season.
Lavender, 25 (3/30/84), played the past four years at Castleton State College in Vermont where he tallied 35 points (8-27=35) in 97 games played. Entering rookie season, the Cleveland Heights, Ohio native was the Spartans team captain during his senior season, and was an assistant captain during his junior and sophomore seasons. The 5-foot-11, 190-pound defenseman was also a three-time ECAC East All-Academic honoree.
"Jared is a strong and physical defenseman specifically in the corners in our defensive zone," said Hillman. "He will also be a vital asset to our team's penalty kill."
Perkins, 22 (11/18/86), is entering his third season professionally having played the past two seasons for the ECHL's Cincinnati Cyclones. During his rookie campaign, the Commerce, Michigan native won the ECHL's Kelly Cup with the Cyclones and tallied 11 points (4-7=11) in 44 games. The 5-foot-9, 190-pound defenseman played just four games for Cincinnati before heading overseas last season. Prior to turning pro, Perkins had 71 points (12-59=71) and 175 penalty minutes in 130 games during his junior career.
"Sean was highly sought after this off season and we are proud to have a former ECHL champion on our roster," said Hillman. "He is a good offensive defenseman who will definitely help out our blueline."
Van Vliet, 25 (3/11/84), played the majority of his rookie season last year under coach Hillman with the Knoxville Ice Bears, but also played six games with ECHL Cincinnati. The 6-foot-0, 170-pound defenseman finished with a total of 21 points (10-11=21) in 55 games played during his rookie season. Van Vliet, a Dorechester, Ontario native played four seasons collegiately prior to turning pro where he recorded 119 points (43-76=119) in 114 games averaging over a point per game.
"Mark is a slick-skating defenseman who also has the ability to play forward for the Mavericks," said Hillman. "His versatility will be needed for a grueling 64-game season."
The Mavericks now have 23 players signed for the team's training camp set to begin on Monday, October 5.
Forwards Defensemen Goaltenders
Kyle Bochek Shaun Arvai Mike Gorman
Sam Bowles Derek Buors Doug Groenestege
Jeff Christian Andrew Davis
Chad Hinz Tyler Fleck
Shane Jury Jared Lavender
Carlyle Lewis Doug MacIver
Jason Murfitt Travis Martell
Derek Pallardy Sean Perkins
Bill Vandermeer Mark Van Vliet
The Mavericks opening weekend at the brand-new Independence Events Center is November 13-14 against the Wichita Thunder. Season tickets are on sale now starting at $352, and group tickets start as low as $10 per person. For more information, call the Mavericks' front office at (816) 252-PUCK (7825).
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