Alec Baer Returns to Peoria for 2023-24 Season - Rivermen Trade for Goaltender Nick Latinovich
August 21, 2023 - 02:30 pm
PEORIA, IL – The Peoria Rivermen announced on Monday that they have signed their sixth forward ahead of the 2023-24 season. Veteran forward Alec Baer will return to Peoria for his 4th season in the River City. In addition, they have also completed a trade with the Macon Mayhem for the rights to goaltender Nick Latinovich in exchange for the rights to defenseman Jake Hamilton.
A native of St. Louis Park, Minnesota, Baer has been a mainstay in professional hockey for the last six seasons. He has seen action in the ECHL with Rapid City, Maine, Newfoundland, and Kansas City. Baer has been a key contributor to the Rivermen, earning SPHL MVP honors in 2022 following a 26-goal and 54-assist (80 points) regular season. During the 2022 playoffs, Baer was instrumental in bringing the President’s Cup to Peoria, netting six goals and five assists in the postseason. He, along with forward Jordan Ernst, had one of Peoria’s two post-season hat-tricks, the first ever for the franchise in the SPHL era. During the 2022-23 season, Baer was one of the top scorers for the Rivermen with 48 points (18 goals, 30 assists). Baer has contributed 128 points in his last two seasons with Peoria.
Baer is entering his fifth year of professional hockey, having seen action in both the SPHL and the ECHL ranks. Baer becomes the second returner from the 2022 championship team now on the Rivermen roster in 2023-24.
The Peoria Rivermen also completed a trade with Macon for the rights to goaltender Nick Latinovich in exchange for Hamilton. Latinovich made his professional debut last season with the Huntsville Havoc, playing in 25 games for Huntsville and boasting a .918 save percentage with a 2.12 goals-against average. Latinovich was traded to Macon midseason and played in four games with the Mayhem before accepting a call-up to the ECHL. He saw action with the Rapid City Rush and the Florida Everblades before signing with the Savanah Ghost Pirates ahead of the 2023-24 season. Latinovich’s SPHL record stands at 16-11-2.
Hamilton is a three-year veteran of the Rivermen and a four-year vet in professional hockey. This past year he boasted a plus-10 in 21 games played for Peoria after coming back from the ECHL.
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