OTTAWA — The Ottawa Senators have signed goaltender Leevi Merilainen to a three-year, entry-level contract.

The 18-year-old played the 2020-21 season with Karpat in Finland’s SM-sarja junior U20 league and earned a record of 21-0-3 to lead the circuit in wins and shutouts (six). He had a .928 save percentage and a 1.71 goals-against average.

The native of Oulu, Finland, was the Senators’ third-round pick (71st overall) in the 2020 NHL draft.

"Leevi made significant strides in his development while playing with a strong program at Karpat last season,” Senators general manager Pierre Dorion said in a release.

"He plays big in the net, maintains a controlled style and is on the right path to continuously improve as he builds additional strength and gains more experience. It’s our hope to see him play for Finland at the next world junior championship."

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 14, 2021.