Skidmore has named current Williams women’s head coach Neil Sinclair as its head men’s ice hockey coach. Sinclair is a 1993 graduate of Middlebury, where as senior he was a first-team All-American and ECAC first-team selection.
At Williams for the past two seasons, he compiled a 29-20-2 record. Prior to Williams, Sinclair spent the 2002-03 season as the Middlebury men’s interim head coach. He led the Panthers to a 22-5-2 record, including a regular-season NESCAC championship and a run to the NCAA Division III semifinals.
“Skidmore is getting one of the nation’s best young coaches,” said Gail Cummings-Danson, Skidmore athletics director. “Neil is fortunate to have been mentored by some of the best hockey minds in the game. We’re excited about the program’s future under his leadership.”
Sinclair began his coaching career in 1994 as the head coach of the Middlebury Union High School boys team, winning the 1996 Vermont State Championship. He was the 1998-99 Vermont High School Division II Co-Coach of the Year. He returned to alma mater, Middlebury, as assistant men’s coach from 1999 to 2002 and then spent a year as interim head coach, while long-time Panther head coach Bill Beaney was on sabbatical.
“I’m excited to be a part of the Skidmore community,” Sinclair said. “I look forward to building on past success of the program and achieving academic and athletic excellence.”
Skidmore finished the 2004-05 season with a 6-19-1 overall record and was 5-13-1 in Eastern College Athletic Conference East play. The Thoroughbreds won ECAC South regular season titles in 1994, 1995, 1996, and 1997 before moving to the stronger ECAC East for the 1998-99 season. The team begins practice Nov. 1 and will open the season at home on Nov. 18 against New England College.