FREDERICTON – Gardiner MacDougall is staying at the University of New Brunswick (UNB).
The Bedeque native has signed a five-year contract to continue as head coach of the UNB men’s hockey team. The university made the announcement in a media release on Wednesday morning.
“Gardiner has an infectious personality, an amazing work ethic and a passion for the game of hockey,” said UNB director of athletics John Richard. “We are excited with Gardiner’s commitment to an additional five years here at UNB, not only for the winning culture he has created but for the confidence he instills in his student-athletes, in the classroom, on the ice and in the dressing room.”
MacDougall has led one of Canada’s most successful university hockey programs to four national championships and two silver medals in his 14 years at UNB, and made his eighth national championship appearance in March 2013.
The Varsity Reds have won seven straight AUS regular-season titles, and have reached the Final 4 playoffs every year under MacDougall.
“I am excited about the opportunity to continue my coaching career at UNB,” said MacDougall. “It has been an unbelievable privilege being a part of the UNB tradition of excellence for the past 14 years.
“I am very fortunate to have a wife and family who have been so supportive of my career here at UNB, and have truly enjoyed being part of such a great community.”
A graduate of two AUS universities, academics have always been at the top of MacDougall’s list of priorities. To date, 92 of his student-athletes have been named CIS Academic All-Canadians, including 12 from the 2012 team.
MacDougall also has two gold medals with Team AUS at the World University Games, including a victory in Italy in December 2013. He was also a member of the coaching staff for the inaugural victory in 2007.
MacDougall, who holds a Level III NCP Coaching Certification along with CHA Advanced II Hockey Coaching Certification, has been keenly interested in player development at all levels.
“We have the tremendous support of so many people here at UNB and within the greater Fredericton community, who all share in the passion of UNB,” said MacDougall. “This includes our top-quality coaches and staff, our UNB hockey alumni, the many supporters, sponsors and volunteers, and of course the great opportunity to work with some of the best student-athletes in the country.”
Local youth level
At the local youth level, MacDougall has been instrumental in the highly successful UNB Pumpernickel hockey camps and, along with longtime friends Roger Shannon and Brian Johnston, helped establish the V-Reds Prospects Elite Youth Program. This program has had an amazing 41 NHL draft picks, and has had over 350 players drafted to the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.
Highlights of Gardiner MacDougall’s 14 years at UNB:
He became UNB’s all-time coaching leader in 2006, and since then has become the current AUS leader in all-time wins. He became the first AUS hockey coach to accumulate over 400 wins this season.
Currently he has an overall record of 420-176-21 and 336-140-18 for AUS conference, playoffs and CIS championships, including a sparkling 18-5 record at the CIS national championships.
In the most recent half of MacDougall’s stewardship, UNB has won 164 regular-season games over the last seven seasons for a winning percentage of 84 per cent in conference play.
In the same seven-year time frame, UNB won 39 out of 54 AUS playoff and CIS playoffs games for a 72-per-cent winning percentage while winning four AUS championship trophies and three CIS University Cups.
Four players who have played under MacDougall at UNB have signed NHL deals while 19 have played at the AHL level and numerous others in minor pro and in Europe.