NMU tabs Lehtinen as hockey assistant coach

Courtesy of NMU Athletics

MARQUETTE, Mich. – Northern Michigan University hockey coach Walt Kyle announced Wednesday the appointment of Rob Lehtinen as assistant hockey coach for the Wildcats, filling the vacancy created by the departure of Joe Shawhan.

“Rob is a going to be a tremendous asset to our program,” commented Kyle. “He is a guy that played here, has worked here as our hockey ops guy for several years, and is totally committed to our program. He is a guy that I have long targeted as a future assistant and we are proud to add him to our coaching staff.”

Lehtinen has served as the hockey operations manager the past four seasons on the Wildcats staff and was a four-year letterwinner at NMU from 2003-07. He appeared in 156 games scoring 17 goals and serving up 38 assists for the Wildcats.

“I would like to thank Walt and Forrest for this unbelievable opportunity. I am excited for this chance, this has been a goal of mine for a very long time and I feel like I am ready to make the next step in my career,” said Lehtinen. “I will be committed to using my past hockey experience to my advantage in helping develop student-athletes. My family and I feel truly blessed to begin my coaching career in my hometown among family and friends.”

Before returning to Northern Michigan, Lehtinen played a season with the Johnstown Chiefs of the East Coast Hockey League and three seasons with the Arizona Sundogs of the Central Hockey League. The Sundogs won the 2008 CHL Ray Miron President’s Cup Championship.