The American Hockey Coaches Association announced Thursday its major award winners for 2013.
THE JOHN MACINNES AWARD: Tony Fritz, Lake Forest College
Established by the AHCA in 1982 to honor former Michigan Tech coach John MacInnes, this award recognizes those people who have shown a great concern for amateur hockey and youth programs. The recipients have had high winning percentages, as well as outstanding graduating percentages among their former players. The winners of this award have helped young men grow not only as hockey players, but more importantly, as men.
Fritz was the Foresters’ head coach for 32 years from 1978-2010 and led the program into the MCHA in 2009-10 after 17 seasons in the NCHA. Lake Forest competed in the ACHA from 1985-87.
TERRY FLANAGAN AWARD: Mike Cavanaugh, Boston College
Named in honor of the former New Hampshire player and Bowling Green assistant, this award honors an assistant coach’s career body of work.
In Cavanaugh’s 18 years at BC, the Eagles have made 10 Frozen Four appearances and won four national titles. Cavanaugh plays a major role with special teams and advance scouting of opponents.
THE JOHN MARIUCCI AWARD: Lorne Grosso, Rochester Mayo (Minn.) High School
John Mariucci, the former coach of the University of Minnesota, was not only an outstanding college coach, but also a driving force behind the growth of hockey in the United States. In 1987, the AHCA created this award to honor a secondary school association coach who best exemplifies the spirit, dedication and enthusiasm of the “Godfather of U.S. Hockey,” John Mariucci.
Grosso is in his 46th year as boys hockey coach of Rochester Mayo High School and with more than 650 victories, he has the most wins in Minnesota high school hockey history. Grosso also played for Mariucci at Minnesota.
THE JIM FULLERTON AWARD: John “Jocko” Connolly, Boston Herald
Named in honor of the former Brown University hockey coach and AHCA spiritual leader, this award recognizes an individual who loves the purity of our sport. Whether a coach, administrator, trainer, official, journalist or simply a fan, the recipient exemplifies Jim Fullerton, who gave as much as he received and never stopped caring about the direction in which our game was heading.
Connolly has scribed for the Herald for the last 39 years, reporting on college sports, including hockey, for the last 31 seasons.
THE JOHN “SNOOKS” KELLEY FOUNDERS AWARD: Jim Higgins, Dartmouth, Brown, Colgate and Princeton
Named after the famed Boston College coach, this award honors those people in the coaching profession who have contributed to the overall growth and development of the sport of ice hockey in the United States.
Higgins is the winningest head coach in Princeton’s history and also played three seasons at Boston University (1958-61), arrived at Princeton in the fall of 1977, having spent two seasons as head coach at Colgate. Higgins was an assistant to Dick Toomey at Brown during the 1974-75 season and also an assistant to Grant Standbrook at Dartmouth from 1970-74.
THE JOE BURKE AWARD: Brian Schulz, USCHO
Presented annually to the person who has given outstanding contribution, support, and dedication to women’s ice hockey.” It is named in honor of a girls’ and women’s hockey “superfan,” Joe Burke.
Schulz has done color commentary for women’s college hockey games for more than 10 years. He started in 1998, covering Harvard men’s and women’s games on the radio while a student. He graduated from Harvard in 2002 and even while taking a job in the financial world in New York, he returned at his own expense to work games. In addition, Schulz also covered international hockey and college hockey for USCHO, again, often at his own expense.
THE WOMEN’S ICE HOCKEY FOUNDERS AWARD: Jill Pohtilla, Augsburg
This award honors a member of the hockey community or college coaching profession who has contributed to the overall growth and development of the sport of women’s ice hockey in the United States through their enthusiasm, passion and selflessness.
Pohtilla was the first head coach of the Augsburg women’s program, serving from 1995-2010 and amassing a 171-177-30 record.
THE WOMEN’S ICE HOCKEY ASSISTANT COACH AWARD: Katie Lachapelle, Boston University
This award recognizes the career body of work of an assistant coach in women’s ice hockey.
The 2011-2012 season marks Lachapelle’s 13th season as an assistant coach and fourth campaign at BU. Prior to working for the Terriers, Lachapelle coached at Union, Niagara and Ohio State.
All award winners will be presented with their formal awards at the 2013 AHCA convention in Naples, Fla., May 1-5.