Lake Superior State coach Jim Roque will not have his contract renewed after nine seasons leading the Lakers.
The school announced the decision in a news release late Tuesday night.
Roque had a 136-165-46 record as head coach of the Lakers, having also served as an assistant coach from 1987 to 1991 and from 2001 to 2005. He was also an assistant at Clarkson from 1995 to 2001.
The Lakers, who went 16-19-1 overall this year, finished tied for eighth in their first season in the WCHA. LSSU lost a head-to-head tiebreaker, however, with Bemidji State for the last spot in the league playoffs, leaving LSSU ninth.
Roque had only three winning seasons as head coach at LSSU, and two of the three came in his first two seasons. Roque led LSSU to its first winning campaign in six seasons as a rookie head coach in 2005-06 after taking over for Frank Anzalone.
In 2011-12, the Lakers were 18-17-5. Roque’s best season came in 2006-07 when he led LSSU to a 21-19-3 overall mark and the CCHA semifinals.
Roque played for the Lakers from 1983 to 1987.
“I appreciate how much Jim Roque loves Laker Hockey and we thank him for what he has devoted to our program,” Lake Superior State athletic director Kris Dunbar said in a statement. “I wish him the best, but at this time we are choosing to move in a different direction with our leadership.”
The school said a national search for Roque’s replacement would begin immediately.
The Lakers ranked last in average attendance this season in the WCHA at 1,809 fans per game. Taffy Abel Arena in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., holds 4,000. Tenth-place Alabama-Huntsville, which won just two games and none at home, averaged 2,008 fans per game this season.