Goaltender Peter Mannino has appeared in only seven games for the Manchester Monarchs this season but his impact has been noticeable with strong play between the pipes. After earning the second goaltending roster spot out of training camp in October, Mannino did not make his first appearance in net until he played his former team, the St. John’s IceCaps, on Wednesday, November 7.
Any “rust” on Mannino’s game was not noticeable as he helped the Monarchs earn a 4-1 victory by stopping 26-of-27 shots. Mannino has continued to play strong in net for the Monarchs as he has collected a 4-2-0 record to go along with a 2.08 goals-against-average and a 0.926 save percentage this season. Mannino has been one of the most consistent players for the Monarchs this season.
“I have been playing for a couple years now,” said a sarcastic Mannino joking about being a professional athlete before getting serious. “It has been a good start. I think we have a really good team here. We are still adjusting to the systems and guys are fine tuning some things in their game. I think everyone accepts what we need to do. It is a matter of doing it every night. Same with me; just personal level and then on a team level, we just have to find that relationship and give it all you got every night.”
Mannino has been building relationships and gaining familiarity with his teammates on and off the ice. In both aspects, Mannino likes to talk especially on the ice where you can see him pointing and yelling to his teammates to make sure everyone is on the same page.
“It keeps me in the game,” said Mannino of his communication with his teammates on the ice. “For my ice awareness, it helps knowing where everybody is and by doing that, I want to create that for my defensemen as well. I want them to know. Most of the time they know but sometimes that odd given time they may not know and it helps them to find a guy that is maybe back door or hanging out on his own or if a defenseman pinches you can yell ‘watch that guy back door’ and they can take that look. I told them it is the same with you guys. Let me know. You can’t over talk out there because that one odd time they let someone know and save a goal which may save the game ultimately. I like to talk off the ice talk as well. As you may know, so it fits my personality and helps me stay aware of what is going on and being involved with the game. I think it helps. I know a lot of guys mention that it helps them in the game and I just want to help them.”
Mannino’s strong play was one of the reasons the Monarchs recently signed him to an American Hockey League contract after he had been in Manchester on a professional tryout agreement with the team.
“While I was here on a (Professional Tryout Agreement), I was giving 100% commitment but at the same time, you never know exactly what may occur down the line, so from that standpoint it helps,” said Mannino on signing his AHL contract. “I am here and this is the team I wanted to be with in the beginning all the way through. Ron Hextall and everyone in Manchester and Los Angeles made the commitment as well. I am very happy and have to give them as much thanks as possible because with the lockout and guys like (Bryan) Rodney who are out there and sitting around waiting for something and he is a great player. He has come in and made a great impact right away and he was at home (before). It just shows you what is out there right now. A lot of ex-teammates and players that are looking for spots or playing in spots they might not want to be at. This is a spot I would love to be at so I am very fortunate and thankful and I just want to give back as much as possible for getting the opportunity.”
Mannino may not know when he will be in net next for the Monarchs but as history has shown, the goaltender will be ready when his number is called upon.