Milwaukee signs four to AHL contracts

The Milwaukee Admirals announced Wednesday that they have signed forwards Vinny Saponari and Barry Almeida, defenseman Theo Ruth and goalie Scott Darling to American Hockey League contracts.

Ruth enters his fourth professional season after spending the past three years with the Springfield Falcons. The Naperville, Ill., native totaled two goals and 14 assists in 149 games during his time with Falcons, including four assists in 43 contests last season.

Prior to turning pro Ruth spent three seasons at the University of Notre Dame, where he played with Ads forward Mark Van Guilder, and helped the Fighting Irish to the NCAA championship game in 2008.

Almeida split his rookie season last year between the AHL’s Hershey Bears and the Reading Royals of the ECHL. He posted six goals and eight assists for 14 points in 35 games with the Bears, while collecting 24 points (10g, 14a) in 27 contests with the Royals. He also chipped in four goals and two assists as Reading won the Kelly Cup championship.

The Springfield, Mass., native played four years at Boston College. In his senior campaign in 2011-12 he was second on the team with 22 goals and chipped in 18 assists as the Eagles won the national title.

Saponari made his AHL debut last season with the St. John’s IceCaps. He played in seven games, scored one goal and dished out one assist for two points. Before playing for St. Johns, Saponari finished out his collegiate career at Northeastern University. In two seasons for the Huskies, Saponari played in 68 games, scoring 14 goals, dishing out 38 assists and totaling 52 points.

Preceding Northeastern Saponari also played two years for Boston University where he scored 20 goals, helped with 27 assists and totaled 47 points in 82 games.

Darling broke into the AHL last season with the Hamilton Bulldogs, playing in one game and stopping all eight shots he saw. Darling played for the majority of the season with the Wheeling Nailers of the ECHL. Leading the team in games played at 32, Darling’s record was 13-12-4 and he accumulated a 2.80 goals-against average, along with a .907 save percentage.

Darling played college hockey at the University of Maine; in 54 games over two seasons he had a record of 25-20-6 as well as a 2.93 GAA and an .895 save percentage.