Rays Receive Six Skaters From Hershey
NORTH CHARLESTON, SC - The South Carolina Stingrays, proud affiliate of the Washington Capitals, have announced six skaters who have been reassigned to the club from the Hershey Bears, the team's American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate. The names include former Stingrays forward Kelly Zajac and defenseman Joey Leach, as well as newcomers Danny Federico, Dylan Margonari, Domenic Monardo and John Parker.
Zajac, 28, returns after finishing the 2015-16 season in South Carolina and scoring 22 points (nine goals, 13 assists) in 21 games. The 5-foot-11, 180-pound forward also brings AHL experience, having spent parts of three seasons with the Albany Devils from 2012-15, including scoring a career best 44 points (12 goals, 32 assists) in 67 games during the 2013-14 campaign. Zajac also skated in 14 games with Manitoba Moose last season, notching one assist. Zajac has notched 62 points (17 goals, 45 assists) in 122 AHL games. The native of Winnipeg, Manitoba, also appeared in 15 ECHL games with the Trenton Titans during the 2012-13 season, scoring 16 points (six goals, 10 assists).
Leach, 24, enters his second season with the Stingrays after playing in 58 games with the club during 2015-16 and scoring 17 points (six goals, 11 assists) and earning a +40 rating. A 2010 third round selection of the Calgary Flames, Leach enters his fourth full pro season. Last year, the Wadena, Sask. native also suited up for Hershey in six games and picked up three assists. Leach spent the majority of 2014-2015 with the Fort Wayne Komets, scoring 19 points (two goals, 17 assists) in 52 games. He also appeared in 10 games with the Lake Erie Monsters of the AHL. Leach played four years of junior hockey with the Kootenay Ice where he was an offensive threat from the blue line. In his final two seasons, Leach notched a total of 77 points. He made his professional debut in 2012 with the Oklahoma City Barons of the AHL.
Federico most recently helped the Allen Americans to a Kelly Cup Championship during his rookie season in 2015-16. Skating on loan from San Jose of the American Hockey League (AHL), Federico, 24, appeared in 65 games with Allen, notching seven points (one goal, six assists) to go along with 10 penalty minutes. The Acton, Mass. native also skated in 10 playoff games for the Americans, notching four assists as Allen captured its second straight Kelly Cup. The defender played four seasons at Quinnipiac University, serving as a co-captain of the club during his senior season in 2014-15. He played in 132 NCAA games, finishing his career with 38 points (three goals, 35 assists) and a +46 rating. He was part of one of the most successful classes in Quinnipiac history, leading the Bobcats to three NCAA Tournament appearances, and a trip to the Frozen Four and National Championship Game in 2013.
Margonari is entering his first professional season after spending four years with the Minnesota State Mavericks in the NCAA from 2012-16. The 24-year-old registered 66 points (38 goals, 28 assists) in 143 total collegiate games. Before MSU, the forward from Greensburg, Pa. spent three seasons in the United States Hockey League (USHL) with the Youngstown Phantoms. Margonari made his pro debut late last season, playing in two games for Hershey.
Monardo spent the last two seasons with the Springfield Falcons in the AHL, scoring 13 points (eight goals, five assists) in 44 games during 2015-16 and 14 points (10 goals, four assists) in 43 games in 2014-15. The 28-year-old defenseman is entering his fourth season in professional hockey, and has also played for the Reading Royals. A four-year standout at Lake Superior State University from 2009-2013, the Oakville, Ont. native amassed 101 points (49 goals, 52 assists) in 153 career collegiate games. At the conclusion of the 2015-16 season, Monardo was named the Falcons' recipient of the IOA/American Specialty AHL Man of the Year award for his outstanding contributions to the Springfield community.
Parker, 24, will also get his first taste of pro hockey after playing the last three seasons at Bemidji State University. The forward appeared in 85 collegiate games and scored 32 points (20 goals, 12 assists) for the Beavers. Before BSU, the Green Brook, N.J. native played one season at the University of Maine in 2011-12 and spent three seasons in the USHL with Muskegon Lumberjacks and Indiana Ice, winning a Clark Cup championship with Indiana in 2009.
The Stingrays' full opening night roster will be announced in the coming days.