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Joel Johnson Named Head Coach of U.S. Women’s National Under-18 Team

05/20/2014, 12:00pm MDT

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – USA Hockey announced today that Joel Johnson (White Bear Lake, Minn.), associate head coach of the University of Minnesota women's ice hockey team, has been named head coach of the U.S. Women's National Under-18 Team for the 2014-15 season. Joining him as assistant coaches will be Katie Lachapelle (Winthrop, Mass.), assistant women's ice hockey coach at Boston University, and Brent Hill (Troy, N.Y.), assistant women's ice hockey coach at Merrimack College.

“Joel has contributed a great deal at the collegiate level and at recent USA Hockey events to earn this well-deserved opportunity,” said Reagan Carey, director of women’s hockey at USA Hockey. “This coaching staff brings a varied and unique perspective that will help our players reach their highest potential."

The trio will lead the U.S. Women's National Under-18 Team at the 2014 Women's Under-18 Series against Canada in Calgary, Alberta, from Aug. 20-24, and at the International Ice Hockey Federation Under-18 Women's World Championship that is anticipated to take place in the U.S. in the early part of 2015.


Johnson has previous experience with USA Hockey as a member of the coaching staff for the 2012 IIHF Under-18 Women's World Championship and the 2013 Women's Under-18 Series. He has also served as a coach at various U.S. Women's Select Festivals.

"I'm greatly honored to serve as the head coach of U.S. Women's National Under-18 Team and have always cherished the responsibility that is associated with representing USA Hockey," said Johnson. "As a coaching staff, we look forward to the challenges ahead and working with our team for the upcoming season of events."

Johnson completed his ninth season as an assistant coach at the University of Minnesota in 2013-14, helping lead the women’s hockey team to its third-straight appearance in the national championship game.

During two stints, Johnson has been a part of four national titles (2000, 2004, 2012-13) with the Golden Gophers. He originally served as an assistant coach from 1999-2004 and returned to the University of Minnesota in the same capacity in 2010-11 after a six-year hiatus.

Johnson also spent six seasons coaching at Bethel University from 2004-10, including three years as the men's hockey head coach. Along with his men's hockey responsibilities, he was also the men's and women's golf coach and prior to that was the soccer coach where he earned MIAC Coach of the Year honors.

Lachapelle and Hill Named Assistant Coaches


Lachapelle will be returning for her second consecutive stint as an assistant coach with the 2014 U.S. Women's National Under-18 Team. She has also has coached at USA Hockey camps for the previous five summers, helping at various Girls' Select 14, 15 and 16 Player Development Camps. Lachapelle has been an assistant women's ice hockey coach at Boston University since 2008, after stints at Ohio State, Niagara and Union, and received the 2013 Women's Ice Hockey Assistant Coach Award from the American Hockey Coaches Association. She has helped BU to four Hockey East titles and five consecutive NCAA tournament appearances, including a trip to the 2011 and 2013 national title games. As a player at Providence College, Lachapelle was a team captain, earned All-ECAC honorable mention recognition and was named to the 1997 ECAC All-Star Team.


Hill will be making his Team USA coaching debut with the 2014 U.S. Women's National Under-18 Team after coaching at various USA Hockey development camps and festivals over the last seven years. Hill recently joined Merrimack College as an assistant coach in preparation for the launch of the women's inaugural campaign in the 2015-16 season. He spent the previous four years as assistant coach of the RPI Engineers women’s ice hockey team and has nearly a decade of coaching and hockey experience. His stops included two years as the director of player development for the Vermont Stars, a Tier I youth girls team; head coach with the 14U Stars in 2008 and 2009; a year as an assistant coach for the women’s program at Saint Michael’s College (Vt.); and two years in an assistant coach role with the Green Mountain Glades, a Tier I youth boys team. As a player, Hill helped lead Saint Michael’s to three consecutive Northeast-10 Championships and was named to the All-Northeast-10 Second Team in 2003-04.

NOTES: Reagan Carey (Colorado Springs, Colo.), USA Hockey's director of women's hockey, is the general manager of the 2014-15 U.S. Under-18 Women's National Team ... Approximately 30 players will be invited to the U.S Women's National Under-18 Evaluation Camp Aug. 11-19, in Lake Placid, New York. The camp will culminate with the selection of a 22-player roster that will represent the U.S. in a three-game series against Canada from Aug. 20-24 in Calgary ... The IIHF Under-18 Women's World Championship is scheduled to be played for the eighth time and will include teams from Canada, the Czech Republic, Finland, Japan, Russia, Sweden, Switzerland and the United States. The dates and location of the tournament will be announced in the near future. Team USA captured gold in each of the first two years of the tournament (2008, 2009) and again in 2011 ... The team has taken home the silver medal in 2010, 2012, 2013 and 2014.

Recent Headlines

U18 Series vs Canada

Year Head Coach Record
2013 Jeff Kampersal 1-0-0-2*
2012 Jeff Kampersal 1-0-1-1*
2011 Heather Linstad 1-0-0-2*
2010 Jodi McKenna 2-1-0-0*
2009 Katie King 1-0-0-2*
2008 Mark Johnson 2-0-1-0*
2007 Katey Stone 0-0-1-2*
Totals 8-1-3-9*

IIHF U18 Women's Worlds

Year Head Coach Record (Place)
2014 Jeff Kampersal 4-0-0-1* (2nd)
2013 Jeff Kampersal 4-0-0-1* (2nd)
2012 Heather Linstad 4-0-0-1* (2nd)
2011 Jodi McKenna 5-0-0-0* (1st)
2010 Katie King 4-0-1-0* (2nd)
2009 Mark Johnson 4-1-0-0* (1st)
2008 Katey Stone 5-0-0-0* (1st)
Totals 30-1-1-3*

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Body-Checking Clinic Builds Contact Confidence

08/25/2016, 3:30pm MDT
By USA Hockey

Aug. 25, 2016 | Body-checking is a skill, not unlike skating, shooting and stickhandling, and it’s a critical skill to teach. Rhode Island Hockey recently gave it special emphasis with a free on-ice checking clinic open to all players in the 12U, 14U and 16U age classifications. Hosted at Schneider Arena with help from Providence College men’s hockey head coach Nate Leaman and Roger Grillo from USA Hockey, the two-hour clinic welcomed more than 100 players for station-based instruction in the fine art of giving and receiving a body check properly.

“Body contact is sometimes an under-taught skill, but there’s so much value in teaching it, both in terms of helping young players become more successful and also in terms of injury prevention,” said Grillo. “It was great to team up with the Rhode Island coaches and offer a learning opportunity that’ll pay dividends for these kids throughout their hockey careers.”

The event was so successful that Rhode Island Hockey will host a second session Sept. 8 at Boss Ice Arena on the University of Rhode Island campus in Kingston. Led by Kevin Sullivan, Rhode Island Hockey’s American Development Model director, the clinic will likely become an annual offering to enhance players’ skill and contact confidence, especially for 13-year-olds progressing into their first season of 14U hockey.

“The initial idea came from a parent asking if we offer any checking-specific training for players transitioning from 12U to 14U,” said Bob Larence, president of Rhode Island Hockey.

There’s a component of body-contact training that happens at every level, from cross-ice 8U to small-area battle drills for older players, but the idea of a body checking-specific teaching event for tweens and teens seemed a beneficial complement to that team-level training, so Rhody ran with it.

“We all thought it was a great idea, and ultimately, it became a great collaboration with Rhode Island Hockey, USA Hockey and the local colleges – Providence, URI and Brown,” said Larence.

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