The Wheeling Nailers, proud ECHL affiliate of the Pittsburgh Penguins and Montreal Canadiens are excited to announce a transaction for the upcoming season. Wheeling has signed forward Zack Torquato to a one-year ECHL contract.
"Zack showed last season that he is a terrific leader for our hockey club," said head coach Clark Donatelli. "He is a vital part to our success on the ice, and I'm looking forward to working with him, and helping him get to the next level," he said.
Torquato, 23, returns to the Nailers for his third full season of professional hockey, after spending one season with the Toledo Walleye and one season in Wheeling. Prior to turning pro, Zack played five seasons of junior hockey in the OHL, with the Saginaw Spirit and Erie Otters. During that time, the Sault Ste. Marie, ON native appeared in 330 games, totaling 134 goals, 195 assists, 329 points, and 411 penalty minutes. His success in juniors led Torquato to a sixth round selection in the 2007 NHL Entry Draft by the Detroit Red Wings. Following both the 2007-08 and 2008-09 seasons, he was given the opportunity to suit up with Detroit's AHL affiliate, the Grand Rapids Griffins, scoring one goal in 12 games. In total, Zack has appeared in 24 AHL games, as well as 114 ECHL games, including this past season, which saw him record 12 goals, 28 assists, and 40 points in 60 games with the Nailers.
"I am very excited to be returning to Wheeling," said Torquato. "I'm looking forward to seeing a lot of familiar faces, and having a successful season with a great group of people," he said.
The Nailers will begin the regular season on October 13th in Cincinnati, in the first of four straight road games, before playing their home opener on October 26th against the Reading Royals.