RIT men’s assistant coach Scott McDonald has been named head coach of the RIT women’s team.
“We are very pleased to have Scott join us as head coach of women’s ice hockey,” said Lou Spiotti, Director of the Center for Intercollegiate Athletics and Recreation at RIT. “He brings a strong set of qualities and experiences as a player and a coach that will enable us to continue to advance our program.”
McDonald, the first full-time women’s hockey coach at RIT, replaces Michael Grainsky, who has been the part-time head coach for the past three seasons. The move to a full-time position prompted a national search for a head coach.
RIT’s women’s program competes in the D-III ECAC East, but the university is considering a move to D-I, according to public statements by RIT president Albert Simone. RIT’s men’s program is in its second year at D-I and will join Atlantic Hockey this season.
McDonald has been the assistant hockey coach for the men’s team at RIT for the past three seasons. He worked primarily with the defense and was instrumental in recruiting talented student-athletes to RIT as it made the jump to Division I. He also gained valuable coaching experience by working in previous years at the U.S. Hockey Select Festivals.
“Scott is well respected by his colleagues and players alike and has proven that he is ready for this challenge,” said Spiotti. “I know that his enthusiasm for this role and his work will be welcomed by the team.”
McDonald played his collegiate hockey at Niagara University and was a part of the university’s inaugural freshman class and first-ever graduating class. During his senior year McDonald helped NU — in only its fourth season — to an NCAA Tournament at-large bid where they beat UNH in the Northeast regional. McDonald also helped Niagara to an undefeated season in the CHA (15-0-2, 30-8-4 overall) as well as the CHA regular season and tournament championships. McDonald earned a Bachelor’s degree in Communications from Niagara University in 2000.
Professionally, Scott played in Hagfors, Sweden for the IK Viking Ishockeyklubb. During his time there McDonald played a key role as a defenseman in their championship season. McDonald also gained valuable coaching experience in Sweden as an assistant coach with the Junior Viking Team. Prior to that, McDonald played with the San Angelo (Texas) Outlaws of the Western Professional Hockey League.
Before college hockey McDonald played in Toronto for the St. Michael’s Buzzers and North York Rangers. Scott is originally from Oakville, Ontario and now lives in West Henrietta, N.Y., with his wife Christina.