INDEPENDENCE, Mo. -- Former Bemidji State men’s hockey defenseman Tommy Muck took the first step of his professional career Monday by signing with the ECHL’s Kansas City Mavericks. Muck is the first member of the 2019-20 Beavers to sign a professional contract.

The Mavericks are affiliated with the NHL’s Calgary Flames and the AHL’s Stockton Heat. They finished 24-32-4 in 2019-20 before the remainder of the season was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic. Fellow BSU alum Charlie O’Connor appeared in 13 games for Kansas City last season.

“He put up impressive numbers as a senior and continued to stand out all season long,” Mavericks head coach and director of hockey operations Tad O’Had said in a news release. “Coaches and scouts rave about his compete level and willingness to always do what is best for the team. He routinely is first over the boards for critical moments, penalty kill and when the team needs an energy boost. He is exactly the type of young, hungry d-man that can be very successful at the pro level. He is chock full of character and an exceptional addition to the Mavs.“

As co-captain of the Beavers this past season, Muck posted career highs in goals (4), assists (16) and points (20) during a breakout offensive senior campaign. He also led the team with 48 blocked shots and a +15 plus/minus rating. The Eagan native garnered his first All-WCHA honors by being named a second team selection.

The Mavericks are scheduled to begin the 2020-21 season in October.