After signing prospects Mark Kastelic and Jonathan Aspirot to entry-level contracts over the past few days, the Ottawa Senators have continued inking their young guns to pro deals.
The team announced, today, that they’ve signed goaltending prospect Kevin Mandolese to a three-year, entry-level contract.
In a statement issued by the team, GM Pierre Dorion said of Mandolese:
“Kevin worked hard this past season to become one of the top goaltenders in the QMJHL...He’s positionally sound, has good lateral mobility and has proven adept at reading the play. Since being drafted, he’s been diligent about understanding what he needs to do both on and off the ice to be ready to be a pro goaltender. He’s shown an ability to make timely saves and, with more seasoning, should have an opportunity to secure wins for this team in the future.”
The 19 year-old Blainville, Quebec native has spent four seasons with the Q’s Cape Breton Screaming Eagles. Over 150 appearances, Mandolese has logged 86 victories, good enough for second in franchise history.
The young netminder experienced a bounce-back year in the shortened 2019-2020 campaign, bumping his SV% from .895 to .925, and GAA from 2.87 to 2.33, as well as securing 26 wins in 37 games, including 18 in his final 21.
A sixth-round pick of the Senators in the 2018 draft, Mandolese will likely join the ranks of the Brampton Beast and/or Belleville Senators next year. With Filip Gustavsson and Joey Daccord already in the pro system, it’s possible that fellow goaltending prospect Mads Sogaard spends another year with the WHL’s Medicine Hat Tigers, giving Mandolese some beneficial time in the ECHL.
That said, these are goalies we’re talking about, and anything can happen.