Kevin Houle, who helped the Plattsburgh men’s hockey team to two NCAA Division III national championships as an assistant and associate coach, has been named interim head coach of the women’s hockey team.
Houle replaces Scott Dockett, the program’s first-ever coach, who resigned in March for personal reasons.
“This is a great opportunity to join a program that’s already established and has accomplished a lot in a short time,” said Houle. “It’s bittersweet to move on to a new opportunity and leave the guys I’ve worked with for so long, but I can still see them every day and watch them develop. I’m looking forward to this new challenge, and I look forward to continuing the women’s hockey team’s success and hopefully competing for a national championship in the near future.”
Houle came to Plattsburgh State in 1989 to become assistant coach of the men’s team alongside his college teammate, Bob Emery. He was promoted to associate coach in 1994, a position he held until now.
Together, the duo led the Cardinals to national championships in 1992 and 2001 and nine SUNYAC championships, including six straight from 1996-02, the most consecutive titles by any conference team. In addition, the Cardinals advanced to 10 NCAA Championships and seven Final Fours while winning 328 games.
Houle was involved in the recruitment of 11 All-Americans, five SUNYAC Players of the Year, six conference Rookies of the Year and nine SUNYAC Tournament MVPs. He was honored by the American Hockey Coaches’ Association in 2002 with the Terry Flanagan Award, which honors a career body of work by an assistant coach.
“We’re excited to have Kevin’s leadership and wealth of experience guiding our women’s hockey program,” school athletics director Peter Luguri said. “In two years the team has been established as a national power, and with his familiarity with the program and extensive recruiting ties, Kevin is exceedingly qualified to continue its progress into the ranks of the elite.”
Houle attended Acton Boxborough H.S. in Acton, MA, where he played with NHLers Bob Sweeney and Tom Barasso. Houle, who also played football, was a Boston Globe and Boston Herald All Star in both sports. He then played at Boston College, and was a fifth-round draft pick by the Montreal Canadiens (No. 103 overall) in 1982. He eventually split time between the Canadiens AHL team, the Sherbrooke Canadiens, and their IHL affiliate, the Saginaw Generals, in 1986-87.
After suffering an injury that season, Houle worked as a scout for the organization for two years.
The assistant coaching vacancy left by Houle on the men’s hockey side will be filled on an interim basis by Steve Moffat, a two-time All-American at Plattsburgh and currently a part-time assistant coach. In addition, a search for a half-time assistant women’s coach will begin immediately, to be filled prior to the coming season.