PORTLAND, ME – September 14, 2022 – The Mariners have re-signed forward Mathew Santos to a contract for the 2022-23 season, the team announced on Wednesday. Santos led the Mariners in points and goals in 2021-22 and was responsible for several key moments in the Mariners run to the playoffs.
Santos, a 27-year-old forward from Etobicoke, Ontario, signed with the Mariners last summer after having played on and off over the prior four seasons. He did not play at all in 2017-18, and after two years at Ryerson University (USports), missed the 2020-21 season as well due to the pandemic.
Last season was his breakout campaign, as he posted a team-leading 59 points and 26 goals in 53 games. Both marks also represented Mariners single-season records. While he was a consistent point producer all season, Santos took his game to another level in the second half of 2021-22. Forty-six of his 59 points and 20 of his 26 goals came between December 29th and the end of the season.
Santos cemented himself into Mariners lore with three consecutive heroic performances in the final homestand of the season. On April 13th against Reading, he scored a pivotal shorthanded goal that boosted the Mariners over the Royals in a must-win game. Then, during the final weekend against Newfoundland on April 15th and 16th, he scored an overtime winner and shootout clinching goal on back-to-back nights to get the Mariners into the playoffs. Santos continued his success in the postseason, posting six points in six games, tied for the team lead. He scored the game-winning goal in Game 3 against Reading, which was the first home playoff game in team history. Santos was named the team’s “Most Valuable Player.”
“I’m super excited to be back with Maine,” said Santos. “I really enjoyed my last season here in Portland and I’m looking forward to doing something special this year as well. We have a great core of guys returning and some good additions for this season. I just can’t wait to be back playing for such amazing fans and giving my all to this team!”
During the 2021-22 season, Santos was loaned to the American Hockey League twice, seeing stints with the Springfield Thunderbirds and the Laval Rocket. He made his ECHL debut back in the 2016-17 season, playing 49 games for the Toledo Walleye. Prior to that, he played junior hockey in the Ontario Hockey League for the North Bay Battalion.