Monday, September 29, 2014

Blazers Solidify Coaching Staff

Kamloops, BC – Kamloops Blazers General Manager Craig Bonner and Head Coach Don Hay have solidified the Blazers coaching staff for this season. 

Mike Needham will join the team today as the new full-time Assistant Coach. Needham has spent the past three seasons as the Head Coach of the Okanagan Hockey Academy Bantam Prep team. He has also spent the last four seasons as the Blazers Skills Coach. 

Terry Bangen and Chris Murray have both been added to the staff as part-time Assistant Coaches. 

Bangen rejoins the Blazers staff after spending five seasons with the Blazers as an Assistant Coach under Tom Renney and Don Hay. Bangen’s resume includes coaching stints with Cariboo College (now Thompson Rivers University), McGill University Redmen, Vancouver Canucks, Hockey Canada and the Tri-City Americans.  

Bangen is also an Assistant Coach with the University of British Columbia Thunderbirds hockey team.

Murray played for the Blazers from 1991-1994 winning two Memorial Cups. He went on to a seven year pro career that included 242 NHL games. Murray is a full-time employee with the Kamloops Fire Department.  

Dan De Palma continues with the hockey club as the team’s Goaltender Coach. Dan is in his sixth season with the hockey club after spending three seasons with the Prince George Cougars. 

Peter Soberlak has been named the team’s Mental Performance Coach. Soberlak played in the WHL for the Blazers and Swift Current Broncos over a four year career from 1985-1989. 

Soberlak won a Memorial Cup with the Broncos in 1989. He played three seasons of pro hockey before earning a bachelor’s degree in psychology at UBC and a master’s degree in sport and exercise psychology at Queen’s. Soberlak is the chair of the physical education department at TRU.

Greg Kozoris is the Blazers’ Strength and Conditioning Coach. Kozoris is a high school teacher and university professor in Kamloops specializing in strength and conditioning. He also owns and operates Acceleration, Kozoris Strength and Conditioning in Kamloops. 

Tim O’Donovan
Director of Hockey / Media Administration
Kamloops Blazers Hockey Club

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