The Manitoba Moose have added another four players to the fold for the 2021-22 American Hockey League season. Included within the grouping of signings announced this week was that of Portage la Prairie product Dean Stewart, who signed on with a one-year deal.
Alongside the 23-year-old defenceman, Manitoba also signed fellow blueliner Tristan Pomerleau and goaltender Philippe Desrosiers to one-year contracts, while further announcing the signing of forward Evan Polei to a two-year deal through the 2022-23 season.
Stewart spent two years with the Manitoba Junior Hockey Leauge’s Portage Terriers from 2014-16, where he helped his hometown team earn two Turnbull Cup titles. Also suiting up for Canada West, the 6-foot-2, 200-pound defender has a gold medal to his name from the World Junior A Championship from 2015-16.
Last season, Stewart spent the year with the ECHL’s Wichita Thunder, earning six goals, 36 points and 12 penalty minutes in 53 games for his first professional season of work. He added two assists in four postseason matchups. Prior to joining Wichita, Stewart spent four years at the University of Nebraska-Omaha, suiting up for the Mavericks, where he potted seven goals and 45 points in 130 games.
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Alongside Stewart will be 25-year-old Evan Polei, who comes from the AHL’s Cleveland Monsters. He had three goals and six points in 15 contests last season, and a total of 17 goals and 39 points in 120 career games in the league.
Goaltender Philippe Desrosiers, 26, suited up in 29 games with the Springfield Thunderbirds in 2019-20, going 16-10-2 with a 3.05 goals against average and a .916 save percentage. He stuck with the Florida Panthers’ taxi squad in 2020-21, not suiting up in a single game.
Defenceman Tristan Pomerleau will join the Moose from Quebec, as the Riviere-du-Loup product spent last year with the Laval Rocket. Prior to joining the pros, Pomerleau played three years of U-Sports hockey, following four seasons of QMJHL play with the Victoriaville Tigres.