HAMDEN, Conn. – Quinnipiac men's ice hockey head coach Rand Pecknold has signed a contract extension through the 2017-18 season, as announced by Director of Athletics Jack McDonald. Terms of the contract have not been disclosed.
"I'm extremely thankful to Quinnipiac University President John Lahey, Executive Vice President Mark Thompson and Director of Athletics Jack McDonald for their continued support and faith in my leadership ability," Pecknold said. "Nikki and I feel so fortunate to be a part of the Quinnipiac family and to continue to have the opportunity to raise our four children in such a wonderful community. We are truly grateful. I would also like to thank my assistant coaches and staff who have contributed so much to the success of our program. "
Pecknold is currently in his 20th year as the Bobcats' head coach and, to date, his 368 career wins rank seventh among active head coach. Last season, he was honored as the ECAC Hockey Tim Taylor Coach of the Year, the New England Hockey Writers Association Clark Hodder Coach of the Year and a Spencer Penrose National Coach of the Year finalist after guiding Quinnipiac to the ECAC Hockey Regular-Season Championship and the NCAA Tournament Northeast Regional Championship.
"I, as well as all of Bobcats Nation, am very proud and grateful to Rand and his staff for the incredible growth and success of our men's ice hockey program," McDonald said. "In addition to the wonderful experience we had last season - with winning the NCAA East Regional and advancing to the Frozen Four Championship game - we are equally proud and grateful for the continued commitment and success in academics and community service."
In 2012-13, Pecknold's Bobcats finished the season with an overall record of 30-8-5, good for a NCAA-leading .756 winning percentage, while also leading the country with the most wins (30) and fewest losses (8) in Division I ice hockey. Quinnipiac also posted a national-best 21-game unbeaten streak from Nov. 9, 2012 through Feb. 9, 2013. The Bobcats cracked the national poll's Top 10, at No. 9, on Dec. 17 before ascending to the No. 1 national ranking on Feb. 11. Quinnipiac remained the No. 1 team in the country for the next eight weeks and heading into the NCAA Tournament as the field's top-ranked team.
The Bobcats won their first NCAA Tournament game in program history with a 4-3 victory against Canisius. Quinnipiac went on to knock-off Union, 5-1, to capture the regional crown and Quinnipiac's first bid to the NCAA Frozen Four. The Bobcats defeated St. Cloud State in the National Semifinals before falling to Yale in the National Championship Game and finishing as the National Runner-up.
Off the ice, men's ice hockey have ranked among the top half of Quinnipiac's Department of Athletics in Positive Play points, which encourages community involvement by Quinnipiac's student-athletes and coaches. In the classroom, Quinnipiac placed a program record 23 student-athletes on the ECAC Hockey Men's All-Academic Team in 2013.
For his career, Pecknold's program has featured 26 All-League selections, including 15 First Team picks, as well as 12 All-Rookie honorees. He has also coached six league Players of the Year, five League Rookies of the Year and last year, the program'second League Goalie of the Year in Eric Hartzell, who also earned ECAC Hockey Player of the Year honors. Hartzell was also the second Hobey Baker Memorial Award Finalist and first Hobey Hat Trick Finalist on his way to being named the fifth All-American in program history and USA Hockey College Player of the Year.
Quinnipiac travels to UMass Lowell on Friday, Oct. 18 before hosting the River Hawks for the Bobcats' home opener on Saturday, Oct. 19.