Eaves returns to Division III roots as St. Olaf head coach
Courtesy of Mike Ludwig, St. Olaf College
NORTHFIELD, Minn. - Mike Eaves, who spent the last 14 seasons leading Division I Wisconsin, was named head men's hockey coach at St. Olaf on Friday.
Eaves led Wisconsin to seven NCAA appearances, including a national title in 2006 and a runner-up finish in 2010, while compiling a 267-225-76 record in Madison. His teams won at least 20 games eight times and won back-to-back postseason league championships in 2012-13 (WCHA) and 2013-14 (Big Ten).
"Mike is a proven winner at every level he has coached and embodies everything our department and college stand for," St. Olaf athletic director Ryan Bowles said. "He is committed to our mission of preparing our student-athletes for life after college. The future is bright for Ole men's hockey and we are excited to welcome Mike and his wife Beth to the Ole family."
"It's a unique situation to do something special," said Eaves, who began his collegiate coaching career at Division III UW-Eau Claire in 1986. "St. Olaf is truly committed to academics, it's in a great college town, and the campus community is very supportive."
St. Olaf, which has played in the aging Northfield Ice Arena for decades, will unveil plans and a campaign for an on-campus ice arena later this summer as Eaves begins his tenure. "I'm excited for the opportunity and the future of this program," he said.
Eaves moved on to Division I St. Cloud State in 1987 before having stops with the Philadelphia Flyers, Hershey (AHL), SM-Liiga (Finland), Shattuck-St. Mary's, and the Pittsburgh Penguins before his time at Wisconsin. He was tabbed to serve as hockey director and head coach of the US National Team from 2000 to 2002 and to coach the US National Junior Team, which won the 2004 World title.
A two-time All-America selection as a player at Wisconsin, Eaves played on an NCAA championship team in 1977 and remains the Badgers' all-time leading scorer with 267 points. He was a member of the 1976 and 1978 US National Team before playing seven years in the NHL with stints with Minnesota and Calgary. Eaves retired in 1986 after collecting 90 career goals in 370 NHL games.
Eaves will start at St. Olaf on June 13.
Boak takes charge of Canton men
Compiled by D3hockey.com Staff
Canton, NY- SUNY Canton today announced the promotion of assistant coach Alex Boak to men's hockey head coach for the upcoming 2016-17 season. The announcement confirms a previous report from the Watertown Daily Times published this past weekend.
Boak, who hails from nearby Norwood, takes over for Trevor Gilligan, who tendered his resignation this offseason after a three year run where he posted a record of 20-47-8. Boak assisted Gilligan this past season in Canton, steering the Kangaroos to a 6-17-4 record as an independent.
"I am grateful that SUNY Canton is giving me this great opportunity," Boak said in the school's release, "I am looking forward to building on the great foundation that Coach Gilligan has built over the past three years. I have had some great coaches in my career and now I get to use those experiences to define my own coaching style. I can't wait to get started this fall."
Before entering the coaching profession, Boak enjoyed a storied playing career at Clarkson, suiting up in 148 games on the blue line, a portion of which was played under current Division III head coach George Roll. Boak earned his degree in 2014, and also advanced to the professional ranks, suiting up for the Wheeling Nailers in the ECHL, and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins in the American Hockey League, prior to taking the assistant job at Canton this past season.
Boak is a frequent instructor at camps throughout his home region, including work at Potsdam, Clarkson, and the Can/Am camp in Lake Placid.
UMass-Dartmouth's Rolli to retire
Courtesy of Megan Erbes, UMass Dartmouth Athletics
DARTMOUTH, Mass. – John Rolli, one of the winningest coaches in NCAA ice hockey history, has announced his retirement as the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth men’s ice hockey coach today. Rolli informed UMass Dartmouth officials, his players, and coaching staff that his retirement is effective July 1, 2016.
“On behalf of our staff, I would like to thank John for his tremendous efforts and the contributions to UMass Dartmouth Athletics throughout his storied career,” UMass Dartmouth Director of Athletics Amanda Van Voorhis said. “John worked to create a highly competitive, first-class Division III ice hockey program over the last three decades. There are thirty-two years of alumni that benefited from his commitment to providing a quality experience on and off the ice. A winning tradition and teaching young men life lessons through sport were just the start. His teams excelled in the classroom year after year and were actively engaged in the community. He poured his heart and soul into the task at hand while advocating tirelessly for the program. John was a great supporter of his coaching peers and our teams, demonstrating a sincere interest in all.”
“I have had the privilege to work with eight supportive athletics directors, tremendous athletics staff, and fabulous players during my tenure at Southeastern Massachusetts University and UMass Dartmouth,” Rolli said. “It was always a pleasure to work with the student-athletes at UMass Dartmouth and my students as an educator for 34 years in the New Bedford school system. I’ve been fortune to work with several great coaches in my career, most notably my mentor, Bruce MacPherson. None of my coaching success could have been possible without the support of my wife, Nancy, and my daughter, Elizabeth, my two best friends in the world.”
In 32 seasons on the Corsairs’ bench, Rolli directed one of the most successful and widely respected ice hockey programs in the nation. Rolli owns a 577-224-43 (.709) career record, boasting the seventh highest winning percentage among all NCAA ice hockey coaches. His 577 victories are the fourth most in NCAA Division III history and 14th on the all-time collegiate coaching list.
Rolli’s tenure as head coach at UMass Dartmouth produced 31 postseason appearances, 27 winning seasons, nine Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) titles, the 2013 Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) Championship, and four NCAA Division III tournament berths. The Corsairs won at least 20 games in a single-season 14 times, including a school-record 25 on three separate occasions (1996, 2006, 2007).
From 1985 through 1999, UMass Dartmouth had an unprecedented run of success in the ECAC, posting a combined record of 313-67-10 for a staggering .815 winning percentage. The Corsairs captured seven conference championships and recorded 11 seasons with at least 20 victories during the 14-year stretch. UMass Dartmouth enjoyed its most successful season in terms of winning percentage during the streak when the 1986 team completed the campaign with a 23-1 mark (.958). Rolli also posted his first 25-win season in 1996 as the Corsairs reached the ECAC tournament.
UMass Dartmouth made three consecutive appearances in the NCAA Division III tournament between 2006 and 2008, representing ECAC Northeast as the conference champion. The Corsairs earned their first win in the national tournament in 2006, defeating Geneseo State 8-2 to advance to the NCAA Quarterfinals. The following year, UMass Dartmouth was edged 3-2 by Middlebury College in the national quarterfinals.
The Corsairs joined the newly founded Massachusetts State Athletic Conference for its inaugural season in 2010. UMass Dartmouth reached the semifinals of the conference tournament in each of its first three seasons before raising the championship trophy in 2013. Sophomore Steve Ginand scored the game-winning goal midway through the third period and senior Ryan Williams made 37 saves to preserve the 2-1 victory over top-seeded Plymouth State. Rolli and his charges booked their fourth trip to the NCAA Division III tournament, where they drew Bowdoin College in the opening round.
A tremendous motivator, Rolli has tutored three American Hockey Coaches Association (AHCA) Division III All-Americans (Eric Frank, 2005; Jon Dryjowicz-Burek, 2006; Mike Owens, 2012), six Eastern College Athletic Conference Players of the Year, and the 2012 Massachusetts State College Athletic Conference Player of the Year in Mike Owens. Nine of his former student-athletes have been enshrined in the UMass Dartmouth Athletics Hall of Fame, in addition to the 1985 and 1998 teams, respectively.
Rolli has earned a great deal of acclaim for his career success. He was named one of 12 finalists for the prestigious Eddie Jeremiah Award/NCAA Division III Coach of the Year Award five times, including earning runner-up honors in 2006. Rolli was selected as the New England Hockey Writers’ Coach of the Year six times, Eastern College Athletic Conference Coach of the Year four times, and the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference Coach of the Year in 2011.
The 1973 graduate of Salem State College retired from the New Bedford school system in 2008 after teaching for 34 years. Prior to joining the Corsairs, Rolli served as the Whalers’ head coach between 1975 and 1984.
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