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K-WINGS BRING BACK THREE IMPACT FORWARDS

Wednesday, August 4th
K-WINGS BRING BACK THREE IMPACT FORWARDS

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

August 4, 2021

K-WINGS BRING BACK THREE IMPACT FORWARDS

Kalamazoo announces the return of forwards Matheson Iacopelli, Tanner Sorenson and Justin Taylor in first player signings of the summer.

KALAMAZOO, MI – The Kalamazoo Wings, proud ECHL affiliate of the National Hockey League’s Columbus Blue Jackets, and Head Coach Nick Bootland announced the club’s first three 2021-22 player signings on Wednesday.

The K-Wings signed Matheson Iacopelli, Tanner Sorenson, and Justin Taylor, a trio of impact forwards who starred on the 2019-20 team, the last time Kalamazoo hit the ice.

“These three players are a huge part of our core and it was a priority to sign them this summer,” said Bootland.

Iacopelli, 27, enters his fourth pro season and second with the K-Wings as a dynamic forward who finished the 2019-20 season with 22 points in his last 20 games. The Brownstown, Michigan native had 31 points (16 goals, 15 assists) in 41 games total that season, including nine power play points and four game-winning goals. Iacopelli, a 2014 third round draft pick of the Chicago Blackhawks, spent two seasons at Western Michigan University before turning pro in 2016.

“I’m super excited to be back in Kalamazoo for this upcoming season, doing what I love most,” said Iacopelli. “I know it’s been a long year without K-Wings hockey and I bet everyone is itching to be back at Wings Event Center cheering us on.”

“Iacopelli is a high-end skater with a tremendous shot,” said Bootland. “He is a streaky goal-scorer and we need him to start the year the way he finished his last.”

Sorenson, 28, returns to Kalamazoo after putting up 26 points (10 goals, 16 assists) in 30 games in 2019-20. The Anchorage, Alaska native also appeared in 12 AHL games that season for the Utica Comets and recorded two assists. Through five pro seasons, Sorenson has skated in 219 ECHL games (216 with Kalamazoo), 12 AHL games, and 53 games overseas in Kazakhstan and Switzerland. He previously spent four seasons at Michigan State University from 2011-2015.­

“Since our last game, I’ve spent two months in Wisconsin, two months in Alaska, and the last year back in Kalamazoo,” said Sorenson. “I could not be more excited for October 23 to get here. I know the fans are fired up to get back to Wings Event Center.”

“Tanner is a dynamic skater and has the ability to create offense on his own,” said Bootland. “He makes the players around him better.”

Taylor, 32, spent the 2020-21 season with the Tulsa Oilers after the K-Wings opted out of the season due to the pandemic. The veteran forward compiled 21 points (9 goals, 12 assists) in 62 games for the Oilers. In 2019-20, Taylor posted 39 points (20 goals, 19 assists) in 49 games for Kalamazoo, including 10 power play points and a team-best five game-winning goals. The Mindemoya, Ontario native has skated in 652 ECHL games and 25 AHL games throughout his career.

“I’m happy to be back in the red and blue,” said Taylor. “I missed the fans, the arena and the city. I take a lot of pride being able to continue to wear the Kalamazoo Wings sweater as long as I have. I’m proud to call Kalamazoo home and proud to be a K-Wing again. Let’s bring the Kelly Cup home!”

“Justin is a player who plays big minutes for us and has played against other teams’ top lines for years in this league,” said Bootland.

Taylor enters his 12th pro season and 11th in Kalamazoo as the franchise record holder for games played (542). He is also third all-time in goals (213) and fifth in points (403).

The K-Wings open the 2021-22 season at 7:00 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 23 against the Toledo Walleye at Wings Event Center. Single game tickets go on sale in September, but fans can guarantee seats to the Home Opener by purchasing a Home Opener Ticket Package or securing a Season Ticket Plan.

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The Kalamazoo Wings are a professional hockey team located in southwest Michigan that has been a staple in the Kalamazoo, MI professional sports landscape since 1974. The K-Wings compete in the ECHL and are the AA affiliate of the National Hockey League’s Columbus Blue Jackets and American Hockey League’s Cleveland Monsters. Kalamazoo plays their 36 regular season home games at Wings Event Center from October through April.

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