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UMD adds to women's hockey staff

Steve Macdonald of Winnipeg, Manitoba, took a step up in coaching last year when Hockey Canada chose him as an assistant with an Under-18 girls team for a series against the United States in Lake Placid, N.Y.

Steve Macdonald of Winnipeg, Manitoba, took a step up in coaching last year when Hockey Canada chose him as an assistant with an Under-18 girls team for a series against the United States in Lake Placid, N.Y.

He took another step Friday in accepting an assistant's position with the Minnesota Duluth women's program.

Macdonald, 31, agreed to a one-year contract, worth $53,000 on a staff with Shannon Miller, the program's only head coach in 12 years, and top assistant Laura Schuler, who has completed three years. All three are Canadian natives.

Macdonald has been director of hockey and head girls coach the last four years at Balmoral Hall School in Winnipeg, a girls preparatory school. Among his former players is UMD sophomore forward Katie Wilson.

"The reputation of UMD's program as one of the best in Division I appealed to me, and the opportunity to work with coaches like Shannon Miller and Laura Schuler. It's a dream come true," Macdonald said Friday. "My hope is to help the Bulldogs win another national title."

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A list of 37 candidates was cut to four finalists for the job, which was opened when Maria Rooth chose to return home to Sweden last week after one year as a UMD assistant. Macdonald talked with Miller last month in Naples, Fla., during the American Hockey Coaches Association convention. Macdonald was there for the Junior Women's Hockey League convention. Candidate interviews also were done by phone.

Macdonald played one season as a defenseman at Lawrence University in Appleton, Wis., and earned undergraduate degrees in kinesiology and applied health and psychology at the University of Winnipeg. He earned a pre-masters degree in sport psychology and a masters degree in coach education at the University of Manitoba. At UMD he will work with the defensemen, recruiting and in the area of mental training.

"Steve has strong ties to a good recruiting league where he had been coaching, and coaches in that league spoke very highly of him," said Miller. "We needed a defensemen coach and we always want our teams to be mentally tough, and he'll be able to help us prepare our players."

Macdonald expects to join the UMD staff by the end of June.

Related Topics: HOCKEY
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