Courtesy of Michigan Tech University Athletics
HOUGHTON, Mich. — Michigan Tech hockey coach Mel Pearson today announced the hiring of Joe Shawhan as assistant coach. Shawhan served as assistant coach at Northern Michigan for the last six seasons. He replaces Damon Whitten, who left to become the head coach at Lake Superior State in April.
“I’m extremely pleased to welcome Joe to the Michigan Tech hockey program,” said Pearson. “We took our time to find the right person for this position
to ensure our program continues to move forward. We had an outstanding pool of candidates including first-round NHL Draft picks and Stanley Cup
“Joe brings with him a wealth of hockey knowledge, not only at the college level but from his days as head coach in the North American Hockey League.
He’s going to be a tremendous asset in recruiting and in working with our goaltending.”
Shawhan’s career in coaching includes nine seasons as an assistant in college hockey and 10 years as a head coach in junior hockey. He spent 1995-2005 as the head coach and general manager of the Soo Indians, compiling a 474-162-43 record to become the winningest coach in the history of the NAHL. The Indians won three division titles and had multiple national tournament appearances. More than 100 of his former players went on to play college hockey.
Joining the Lake Superior State staff in 2005, Shawhan worked three years as assistant coach with the Lakers before moving to Northern Michigan. He
spent the 2008-09 season as a volunteer assistant and the 2009-10 campaign as the director of hockey operations before being named assistant coach in
“I’m excited about this new opportunity,” said Shawhan. “Thanks to Mel, (Michigan Tech athletic director) Suzanne (Sanregret) and all involved. It was a really difficult decision to leave NMU, but this is a great opportunity for me.
“I like the enthusiasm of the program and am comfortable with Houghton and the Copper Country. I’ve know Mel for a long time and understand how he’s running the program. I’m confident I’ll be able to step in and use my 30 years of experience to help this team.”
Shawhan earned four letters as a goaltender for Lake Superior State from 1983-87, where he amassed 1,130 saves. He led the CCHA in both goals against average and saves and left the program tied for first all-time in career GAA at 3.83.
An active member of USA Hockey, Shawhan has served as an educator, evaluator and coach. He led the 2004 U.S. National Junior Team to a silver medal at the 2004 Viking Cup in Alberta.
The Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., native holds a bachelor’s degree from Northern Michigan in technical and applied sciences. He and his wife, Laura, have three children, Mia, Jordan and Rachel.
“Joe’s very passionate about college hockey, and I know he’ll bring integrity and a great work ethic to our program,” said Pearson. “I’m looking forward to having Joe, Laura and their family as a part of Huskies hockey.”
Shawhan will begin his duties at Michigan Tech immediately.