PORTLAND, ME – October 11, 2018 – The Mariners announced the first three captains in franchise history on Wednesday night at an exclusive season ticket holder meet and greet event held at AURA in downtown Portland. Veteran defenseman Zach Tolkinen was named captain, while forward Terrence Wallin and defenseman Scott Savage were named alternate captains.
Head coach Riley Armstrong was the assistant in Wheeling where Tolkinen played last season.
“I just felt dealing with him [in Wheeling] and seeing how he commanded the locker room just being there for a short period of time, I kind of knew right away after we signed him on July 1st that he was the right guy for the job,” said Armstrong. “I think he has the respect from all of his teammates. He’s always in a good mood, keeping the guy loose, which is what we need heading into opening night.”
Tolkinen is entering his fifth year as a pro, all in the ECHL. He’s played 264 career games between Elmira, Missouri, Rapid City, and Wheeling, making him the lone “veteran” on the roster by definition – over 260 professional games. He’s also the oldest player on the roster, at 28 years old. Tolkinen is a native of Lino Lakes, Minnesota.
Terrence Wallin, a 26 year old forward from Yardley, Pennsylvania but with Maine connections in Kennebunk, was acquired in a trade with Adirondack in mid-September. After enjoying a career year for the Thunder last season, Wallin was rewarded with a call-up to the AHL, where he played four games for the Binghamton Devils.
“Wallin is another guy who has played years in the league and can really show the young guys what it takes,” said Armstrong. “He started in the SPHL and he’s kind of worked his way up to get games in the American [Hockey] League so I think he can relate to a lot of the young guys coming in.”
Scott Savage, 23, is a defenseman from San Clemente, California who appeared in 50 games for the Jacksonville IceMen last season but also has AHL time with the Cleveland Monsters. He has New England ties, having played four seasons at Boston College (2013-17). He was one of many Mariners who went through training camp with the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack.
“Just watching Savage over the last couple of weeks being in Hartford and also here he just holds every single guy accountable on the team which I think will go a long way,” said Armstrong.
Tolkinen, Wallin, and Savage lead an inaugural Mariners roster comprised of numerous players who have existing pro experience. Twenty-one players can be active for the first 30 days of the season, before the limit drops to 20.
The Mariners, proud affiliate of the New York Rangers, will begin the regular season at Cross Insurance Arena on Saturday night against the Adirondack Thunder at 6:00 PM. The Mariners are members of the ECHL: the premier AA hockey league in the United States. Single game tickets are on sale now at www.MarinersOfMaine.com or by calling the Trusted Choice Box office at 207-775-3458. Fans interested in season tickets, groups, five game plans, or flex packs can call 833-GO-MAINE.