Lucia Named World Junior Coach
CHN Staff Report
ST. PAUL, Minn. USA Hockey has named Minnesota coach Don Lucia the head coach of its 2014 World Junior Championship team that will compete Dec. 26, 2013 – Jan. 5, 2014 in Malmo, Sweden.
The U.S. is coming off a gold medal at least year's World Juniors.
“I’m so excited to have this opportunity," Lucia said. "When I started coaching many years ago one of the things I hoped to be able to do was to be involved with the Olympic team or the US World Junior team. So when (USA Hockey assistant executive director) Jim (Johannson) offered me the opportunity obviously it was something that I’m going to jump at.”
Lucia will be joined by St. Cloud State head coach Bob Motzko and Boston College assistant Greg Brown.
Lucia has been the head coach of Minnesota since 1999-2000. In that time he has won two national titles (2002 and 2003) and made two further trips to the Frozen Four (2005, 2012). Prior to coaching the Gophers, Lucia was the head coach of Alaska-Fairbanks (1987-1993) and Colorado College (1993-1999).
“We’re extremely pleased to have Don as the head coach of our National Junior team,” Johannson said. “He has developed some of the best American-born players over the last 25 years.”
Lucia is the third straight Minnesota native to be the USA World Junior head coach, following Phil Housley (1st in 2013) and Dean Blais (7th in 2012).
Lucia, who volunteered for the job last year before being offered it, will also be joined by returning assistant David Lassonde (goaltenders) and Yale assistant coach Dan Muse (video coach). It’s a reunion of sorts for Lucia and Motzko as the St. Cloud State head coach was an assistant at Minnesota for four years.
The U.S. is seeking its fourth medal in five years and second straight gold medal. All of those have come with Johannson as general manager of the under-20 team.