Former Merrimack head coach, New Hampshire assistant Serino dies at 63

Chris Serino, who was Merrimack’s head coach from 1998-2005 and also an assistant coach at New Hampshire from 1991-98, passed away Monday after a bout with throat cancer.

Serino was 63. He had been diagnosed with cancer just prior to the 2001-02 season when he was at Merrimack.

At UNH, Serino was also the head baseball coach.

Serino had been the Malden Catholic (Mass.) High School athletic director and hockey coach, but stepped down before the start of the 2012-13 season because of his illness.

“Chris was a great guy with a great personality,” said Xaverian athletic director Charlie Stevenson to the Boston Herald. “He did a great job at Malden Catholic. As a Xaverian Brothers school, I am sure the people at Malden Catholic will miss him tremendously. My sympathy goes out to his family and the Malden Catholic community. He will be sorely missed.”

“He was a great guy and a great coach,” UNH coach Dick Umile said in a statement. “He was a tremendous athlete and a personal friend of mine; I go way back with him. The fans, the friends of UNH hockey, he really got along with the community. He fought a courageous battle with cancer and it came back in the last year and a half and really had a battle with it.”

Serino came to Malden Catholic in April 2005 from Merrimack, where he also had a stint as the school’s interim athletic director.

Serino is survived by his wife, Robin, and his five sons.

Funeral arrangements have not yet been announced.