Luke Strand is the new Head Coach/GM of the Madison Capitols.
MADISON, Wisc. (USHL) -
The Madison Capitols announced that Luke Strand has been named the team’s new Head Coach & General Manager and will lead the organization when they make their return to the USHL beginning with the 2014-15 season.
Strand, 41, is no stranger to the USHL having spent this past season as the General Manager for the Sioux City Musketeers where he helped lead the team to a 38-19-3 record, equaling the team record for victories in the USHL Tier 1 era (2002-present). He was previously the coach of the Musketeers for two seasons (2009-11) and compiled an overall 58-47-15 record which included a playoff berth in 2011.
His first experience coaching in the USHL came in the state of Wisconsin when he served as assistant coach with the Green Bay Gamblers for two seasons (2003-05).
"I am excited for the opportunity to join the Madison Capitols organization and Madtown Hockey LLC,” said Strand. “My passion and desires for the state of Wisconsin and the hockey within the state is something that I cannot resist. I look forward to creating a winning team and culture on the ice and in the Madison community.”
Strand helped develop multiple players that have gone on to play NCAA hockey, in addition to a number of players that went on to be selected in the NHL Draft, including Kevin Gravel (Los Angeles Kings), Max Gaede (San Jose Sharks), Max McCormick (Ottawa Senators), and Jordan Schmaltz (St. Louis Blues).
“I must compliment Jay Varady and the Sioux City Musketeers ownership for their cooperation in this process, as well as Sioux City community,” said Strand. “I am thrilled to lead the USHL back to Madison!"
Strand also played in the USHL for two seasons with the North Iowa Huskies (1991-93) and the winger put up 34 points (8g, 26a) over 83 games with the club that was coached by P.K. O’Handley, the current head coach of the Waterloo Black Hawks. He went on to play collegiate hockey at the University of Wisconsin Eau Claire, putting up 85 points (41g, 45a) over 104 games at the school. Strand then went to a short professional hockey career that included time in the state of Wisconsin with the Madison Monsters (1997-99) and Madison Kodiaks (1999-2000) of the United Hockey League.
Strand also has coaching experience in the American Hockey League, serving as assistant coach with the Houston Aeros (2007-09) and Abbotsford Heat (2011-13). While in Houston, he was on the staff of head coach Kevin Constantine who began his coaching career in the USHL (North Iowa 1985-86, Rochester 1987-88).
Strand takes over as head coach of the Madison Capitols following the departure of Steve Miller who was originally named coach of the team for their return to the USHL in 2014-15. He resigned from the organization last week to pursue other interests.
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