HERSHEY, Pa. – The Hershey Bears announced they have re-signed forward Kale Kessy to an AHL contract for the 2020-21 season. Kessy skated in 24 games for the Bears last season, racking up 102 penalty minutes and getting in six fights. Kessy was named Hershey’s IOA/American Man of the Year for his outstanding work in the community during the 2019-20 season. He quickly became a fan favorite in his first year in the Chocolate and White due to his physical style of play.
Kessy missed a portion of the 2019-20 season after he was injured during a fight with Charlotte’s Derek Sheppard on February 25 in which he had to be removed on a stretcher. Kessy and Sheppard engaged in the fight with the Bears up 4-1 in the second period of the game when the incident occurred. Even then, Kessy urged his teammates to win the game as he was being taken off the ice, which factored into the team’s decision to play the remainder of the game.
Kale Kessy and Kurtis Gabriel seem to disagree about something. pic.twitter.com/KbYojMxzIs
— NoVa Caps (@NoVa_Caps) December 8, 2019
Kessy was getting back to full health before the season shut down in March, skating with Hershey’s scratches that stayed behind in Hershey while the team was away on their final road trip of the season.
The 27-year-old’s penalty minute totals ranked ninth in the AHL this past season and helped spark a new chapter of the Bears and Phantoms rivalry last season when he dropped the gloves with Lehigh Valley’s Kurtis Gabriel a few times. Kessy found a stable role with the Bears to help protect some of the younger players on the team, and remained with the team for the entire season, not being sent to the ECHL for the first time since the 2015-16 season when he played for the Bakersfield Condors.
Kessy’s re-signing in Chocolate town means the Bears have made 14 signings this offseason.
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