August 04, 2015 - 12:51 PM
KELOWNA – After nearly a month-long search, the Kelowna Rockets have a new head coach.
Brad Ralph, the former head coach of the Idaho Steelheads, has been signed to a three-year contract, Rockets president and general manager Bruce Hamilton announced Tuesday, Aug. 4.
Ralph, 34, was a finalist for East Coast Hockey League Coach of the Year last season after a 48-18-6 season that led to the Steelheads winning the ECHL Pacific Division. Over his five-year head coaching career, Ralph has an overall record of 203-98-27. In 2011 he was named Southern Professional Hockey League Coach of the Year.
“It’s an honour to coach the Kelowna Rockets and I’m excited to get to know the players and the organization,” he says in a release. “The Rockets have a great tradition of winning and I’m looking forward to learning why this team has been so successful over the years. I think there is a great group of players coming back here and I’m excited to guide them back to where they were last year.”
Ralph, a native of Richmond, Ont., played junior hockey for the Ontario Hockey League's Oshawa Generals, the team that beat the Rockets in the Memorial Cup this past season. He played more than 450 professional games in North America and Europe and was team captain for four of the nine teams he played for.
The Rockets have been searching for a new head coach since Dan Lambert announced in July he would be taking a job as an assistant coach for the National Hockey League's Buffalo Sabres.
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