At a press conference today at Spragins Hall at UAH, the university has named assistant coach Chris Luongo as the new head coach of the program.
HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – After spending the last two seasons as the top assistant coach with the Alabama-Huntsville Chargers hockey program, Chris Luongo has been named the fourth head coach in school history.
“I am extremely excited about this opportunity and I want to thank Mr. Harris, and Dr. Williamsfor entrusting UAH Hockey to me,” said Luongo. “This is something I take very seriously and I am committed to our student-athletes, The University, and to the Huntsville community.”
A former NHL defenseman, Lungo joined the Charger program in 2008 following two seasons as assistant coach at Wayne State.
“Chris has done an excellent job with our student-athletes both on the ice and in the classroom the past two seasons and there is no doubt in my mind that he’s the right guy for our university to lead the UAH hockey program,” noted UAH Director of Athletics Jim Harris.
An All-CCHA defenseman at Michigan State under legendary hockey coach Ron Mason , Luongo was part of the Spartans program from 1985-1989 including MSU’s 1986 national championship team. Following his collegiate career, Luongo, a 5th-round selection by the Detroit Red Wings in the 1985 NHL Entry Draft, played with the Phoenix Roadrunners of the IHL and the Adirondack Red Wings of the AHL before making his NHL debut in Detroit in the 1990-91 season.
“The University of Alabama in Huntsville has had a proud tradition of coaches from Coach Ritch to Coach Ross to Coach Cole and I look forward to putting my mark on Charger Hockey,” remarked Luongo. “Having been here for two years, I have become well aware of the amazing support that UAH Hockey receives from the University, the Alumni, and the Huntsville community and look forward to building on that support in the coming years.”
A Fraser, Mich., native, Luongo along with his wife Cheryl and two sons, Anthony and Christopher live in Madison. Luongo replaces Danton Cole, who resigned in June to take a head coaching position with USA Hockey.
In conjunction with this announcement, UAH Athletic Director Jim Harris announced that the team would play Merrimack in Nashville this season as part of a double-header with the Nashville Predators. This series will take place Friday, January 14, 2011 and Saturday, January 15, 2011, with the Saturday afternoon game as the double-header. The Predators will host the 2010 Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks in the Saturday night game.
Harris also announced that the Chargers had entered into a home-and-home agreement with The Ohio State University. The Chargers will travel to Columbus, Ohio for a two-game series on November 5-6, 2010 with the return date as-yet unreleased.
The Chargers will also face off with former College Hockey America foe Robert Morris in Birmingham during the 2010-11 season.