The Pittsburgh Penguins have re-signed forward Zach Aston-Reese to a two-year contract, it was announced today by executive vice president and general manager Jim Rutherford.
The one-way contract runs through the 2020-21 campaign, and carries an average annual value of $1 million.
"Zach is a responsible player who plays a solid two-way game," said general manager Jim Rutherford. "He has a heavy style of play that is especially effective on the forecheck and penalty kill."
Aston-Reese, 24, provided sound offensive production during the 2018-19 regular season, posting career highs in both goals (8) and assists (9) while being limited to 43 games due to a broken hand. He also played in all four of the Penguins' 2019 Stanley Cup playoff games.
The 6-foot, 204-pound Aston-Reese found success with the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins of the American Hockey League during his first full professional season in 2017-18, recording nine goals and 20 assists in 41 games with WBS.
Aston-Reese was rewarded for his standout play with call-ups in both February and March for the 2018 playoff push, skating in 16 regular season games while recording four goals and two assists, and later made his NHL playoff debut that season, appearing in nine postseason games.
The Staten Island, New York native was initially acquired by Pittsburgh as an undrafted free agent from Northeastern University, signing a two-year, entry-level contract with the Penguins on March 14, 2017.
Aston-Reese provided prolific offensive production during his collegiate career, ranking 12th all-time in points (148) and 13th all-time in goals (66) for Northeastern. He was also an alternate captain during his junior and senior years.
During the 2016-17 season, Aston-Reese was named a finalist for the Hobey Baker Award, which honors the NCAA's top player, after leading the nation in both points (63) and goals (31).