Anchorage Wolverines announce next head coach
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - The Anchorage Wolverines junior hockey team announced its next head coach, days ahead of the team’s scheduled non-league season opener.
The North American Hockey League organization welcomed Evan Trupp as the second head coach in the program’s history on Thursday, pulling from within its ranks to promote the 34-year-old from an assistant coaching role.
Trupp is taking the reigns from Mike Aikens, who coached the 2021-22 squad to a Robertson Cup Finals berth in the team’s inaugural season, which ended with a 3-0 loss in the championship game to the New Jersey Titans. Aikens left for an assistant coaching opportunity with the St. Lawrence University hockey team, a Division I program.
Wolverines director of hockey operations Keith Morris described Trupp in a press release as “a tremendous hockey player and coach” with “great rapport with the players.”
“We have no doubt that he will step into the head coaching role with ease,” Morris said. “With 15 returning players, and an incredible amount of depth with players new to the Wolverines, we are excited to show Anchorage even more excitement on the ice this season.”
The team announced additional changes to its coaching staff, with Chugiak High School alum Nick Walters taking over the assistant coach job left vacant by Trupp. The team is also bringing back associate coach Merit Waldrop.
Trupp is an Alaskan resident who cut his teeth on the youth hockey scene in Anchorage. Following a high school career at South Anchorage, he went on to play Division I hockey at the University of North Dakota from 2007-10, finishing with 41 points in 44 games his senior year with the Fighting Hawks.
He got playing time in the Deutsche Eishockey Liga in Germany, as well as the top hockey league in Austria, the ICE Hockey League. Trupp also won a Kelly Cup championship with the former Alaska Aces in 2014.
The Wolverines begin their season Sept. 14 against the Amarillo (Texas) Wranglers in an exhibition game at the NAHL Showcase in Blaine, Minnesota. The team’s season opener will be Sept. 22 against the Chippewa (Wisconsin) Steel, and their home opener is Oct. 21 against the Janesville (Wisconsin) Jets.
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