The Cold Lake Ice had quite the season last year, starting off which a tabloid worthy story of then head coach Neil Langridge’s firing in early fall. After winning 4 championships in a row- Langridge’s dismissal came as a huge surprise to the public and a blow to the organization.
What followed next was weeks of speculation and rumours. The team of boys who were rattled and didn’t know who to trust, a coaching staff who – many say rightfully – felt wronged and eventually walked out on the team. Leaving the team with no one on the bench who helped shaped them into a championship organization.
Start from scratch- sorta- a coach stepped forward claiming to be taking charge but after speaking out to press about inside information the club got rid of him faster than they found him.
They made sure they found someone they could trust the next go around, Paul Desjardins. Paul coached the team prior to Langridge and knew the expectations were high. Not only did the board expect a repeat championship – but they wanted results at provincials and results at the Keystone Cup – the best of Western Canadian Jr B teams were headed for Cold Lake and they wanted to show off their city and their organization.
Coach Pauly D brought home the championship but failed at provincials and the keystone and resigned nearly immediately after the last fan left the bench at the Keystone Cup.
Which brings us to new beginnings again and another opportunity –
The Ice have named Scott Hood as their new Head Coach and Manager. Hood is a resident of Cold Lake who has hockey ties in Lloydminster. He played out his Jr. B career with the Bandits, while there winning four league championships and two provincial titles. He was also part of the Lloydminster Border Kings, Seniors AAA, from 1999-2008. While with the organization, the team brought home two Canadian Senior Hockey Allen Cup Championships.
Hood then moved onto the Bentley Generals under coach Brian Sutter. Hood played in Bentley from 2008-2011, winning another Allen Cup in 2009. He was selected to a touring Tem Canada Squad, which played in Poland in 2001 under current Vancouver Canucks head coach Willie Desjardin.
This is the type of resume the Ice Organization has been longing for and needing to take the team to the next level. They’ve solidified their dynasty in the Northeast Alberta Junior B Hockey League, now they need to lock down on Provincials and perhaps even earn a spot in the Keystone Cup this season.