St. Lawrence University President William L. Fox announced today that Brent Brekke has been named the Charles W. Appleton II Men's Hockey Coach. In St. Lawrence's long tradition of ice hockey, traced to the 1920s, he will be the 15th head coach of the program. Brekke has served as an associate head coach and assistant coach at the Division I level for the past twenty years.
"Brent Brekke demonstrated in all the extensive conversations with the search team the clear ability to develop and share a vision as a head coach," said President Fox. "I was impressed with his grasp of what today's students seek and how that translates into a competitive men's hockey program at St. Lawrence. Our ability to recruit a coach of the highest caliber was greatly enhanced by the wise counsel and Laurentian loyalty of professional hockey executives Ray Shero '84 and Randy Sexton '82."
Brekke has spent the past year as an assistant coach at Clarkson University where he helped them finish with a record of 26-11-2, win the ECAC Championship, and advance to the NCAA Tournament. Before that he had spent a decade as assistant and then associate head coach at Miami University in Ohio where he helped them make back-to-back Frozen Four appearances, six NCAA Tournament appearances, two regular season conference championships and two playoff conference championships.
"I am excited to join the Laurentian Hockey family and was interested in the position because of the incredible history and legacy of the program," said Brekke. "The University's commitment of resources combined with the renovation of Appleton Arena give us a great chance to be successful."
Director of Athletics Bob Durocher led the search and Brekke was selected from a national pool of candidates. "Brent will fit in well within our culture and we look forward to him leading our program," said Durocher.
Former Saints head men's hockey coach Joe Marsh and Hockey Alumni Association executive committee members and current NHL executives Ray Shero '84, general manager of the New Jersey Devils, and Randy Sexton '82, assistant general manager of the Buffalo Sabres provided their expertise and assistance with the search process.
"Randy and I were honored when asked to participate as part of the process," said Shero. "As former Saints hockey players, we are thrilled to have hired someone who has superb coaching knowledge, a proven track record, and understands the history and tradition of our Division I program. This is a great day for St. Lawrence University."
Prior to his time at Miami, Brekke spent nine years as an assistant coach at Cornell University helping them to a Frozen Four appearance, four NCAA Tournament appearances and two ECAC Championships.
Brekke will start his St. Lawrence coaching career in a renovated Appleton Arena, where work recently began and is targeted to be finished by the start of the 2019-20 hockey season.
He will be joined by his wife Stacey, and their two children a daughter, Bailee, and a son, Cody.
Brekke will be introduced to the community during St. Lawrence's Reunion Weekend at an event on Saturday June 1.