Mercyhurst assistant Upton leaves Lakers for head coaching job with USHL’s Capitols

Tom Upton served as an assistant coach with Mercyhurst from 2017 to 2020 (photo: Matt Durisko/Mercyhurst Athletics).

Mercyhurst assistant coach Tom Upton has left his position to become the new head coach and general manager for the USHL’s Madison Capitols.

“I would like to thank Tom for his three years of commitment, dedication, and passion that he gave everyday,” said Lakers head coach Rick Gotkin in a statement. “He always brought great energy and enthusiasm and that rubbed off on our entire program. Tommy leaves Mercyhurst with an Atlantic Hockey Association championship on his resume in 2017, and he knows what it takes to win. Our entire program will miss his infectious personality but we are all very excited for him as he begins his new opportunity as the Head Coach and General Manger of the Madison Capitols of the United States Hockey League, which is regarded as one of the best development leagues in the country.

“On behalf of our entire program I would like to wish Tommy, Sarah, and Briggs the best of luck, and continued success as they begin this new chapter in their lives.”

“This is a bittersweet moment for my family and I but truly an opportunity that we could not pass up,” added Upton. “We absolutely love Mercyhurst, Erie, and the people we have been fortunate to surround ourselves with over the last three years.

“I would like to thank Rick Gotkin and Greg Gardner for all they taught me over the last three years and I hold each of them close to my heart as great friends. I would also like to thank President Victor, Laura Zirkle, and athletic director Brad Davis for their support and friendship for not just myself and my family but for our men’s hockey program and Mercyhurst University as a whole.

“Finally I want to thank the players from the past three years. They made every day fun to come to the rink and go to work. I appreciate all the love and respect they showed my family and I over the past three years and I will always have great relationships with each of them.”