McKenna tapped to lead UW-Superior men

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SUPERIOR, Wis. -- The University of Wisconsin-Superior has named Rich McKenna its new head men's ice hockey coach, it was announced on Wednesday.

"It's really exciting to be part of the Yellowjacket family," said McKenna. "It has a rich hockey tradition and is a great school. I am looking forward to moving my family here and raising them in the community. I'm very thankful for the opportunity."

McKenna, a native of Greenwood Lake, N.Y. and gradate of Division III Castleton, brings ample college experience to Superior as he served as an assistant at Division I Connecticut where he specialized in recruiting and defensive coaching. Prior to his time at UConn he spent two season as an assistant at Division III Wesleyan.

"We are excited to welcome Coach McKenna to UW-Superior," said UW-Superior interim Athletic Director Nick Bursik. "He brings a proven track record of success and professionalism on and off the ice. It was clear to our entire hiring committee that Coach McKenna is the perfect person to help launch and lead an exciting new era of Yellowjacket hockey."

McKenna's most recent coaching experience came as head coach of the New Jersey Titans of the North American Hockey League, a Tier II U.S. junior league. Prior to his time with the Titans he served two seasons as assistant general manager and assistant head coach of the United States Hockey League's Muskegon Lumberjacks. The USHL is the lone Tier I junior league in the United States.

McKenna takes over a Superior team that has not finished with a winning record since the 2010-11 season, though the program has a rich history as it boasts three regular season league titles and six league postseason titles. The Yellowjackets won the 2002 national championship and have made 12 NCAA tournament appearances overall, the most recent of which came in 2009.

"I would like to thank the search committee, Nick Bursik and Chancellor Renée Wachter and the hockey alumni that I have talked with along the process," said McKenna. "I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for the passion of the alumni. I look forward to contributing to the rich tradition of Yellowjacket hockey."