Alaska-Anchorage has selected Matt Curley as the program’s next head coach.
Curley, a four-year defenseman at Clarkson (2003-07), has been the head coach the past two years for EC Salzburg in the Alps Hockey League (Austria). Prior to joining Salzburg, Curley spent two years as an assistant coach at Bentley (2013-15); he also spent one season with the Indiana Ice (USHL) as an associate head coach and two seasons with USA Hockey’s NTDP.
“Through hard work, dedication and a pursuit of excellence I will lead the charge to turn the UAA program in a positive direction to compete in the WCHA and in the nation,” Curley said. “My family and I are excited to join the Alaska family.”
UAA had originally offered the position to Denver assistant David Carle, Mass.-Lowell assistant Cam Ellsworth and Providence assistant Kris Mayotte, but all three turned down the position.
Curley, who becomes the youngest coach in Division I at 35 years old, takes over for Matt Thomas, who was fired last month after posting a 4-26-4 record this past season.
“It became clear after talking with Matt and his mentors, that he possesses a great hockey mind and was focused on preparing himself to be an NCAA Division I head hockey coach,” interim athletic director Tim McDiffett said. “He has coaching experience at the highest levels of USA Hockey and took a chance on himself by moving his family to Austria so he could get head coaching experience. Today UAA is the beneficiary of that investment and belief in himself.”
Curley, a native of Madrid, N.Y., had 3 goals and 11 points in 126 NCAA games with the Golden Knights. He was a senior on the 2007 ECAC championship team. He went on to a brief pro career before starting in coaching.
“Matt is a true professional who is extremely driven for success and is willing to work as hard as it takes to overcome any obstacles,” said Bentley head coach Ryan Soderquist. “The Anchorage community is getting one of the most passionate and determined coaches out there.”
Curley’s sister, Maureen Webster, is the head women’s basketball coach at Clarkson.