Coaching Staff Named for Canada’s National Para Hockey Team
CALGARY, Alta. – Hockey Canada has announced the coaching staff for Canada’s National Para Hockey Team for the 2022-23 season, which includes a new head coach for the first time since 2015.
Russ Herrington (Unionville, Ont./York University, OUA) will take over as head coach after serving as an assistant coach with the team for the past seven years. He will be joined behind the bench by assistant coach Mike Foligno (Sudbury, Ont.) and goaltending consultant Mike Fountain (Gravenhurst, Ont.).
The coaching staff for Canada’s National Para Hockey Team was selected by Tyler Dietrich (West Vancouver, B.C.),senior manager of hockey operations, and Marshall Starkman (Thornhill, Ont.), manager of hockey operations, with support and input from Scott Salmond (Creston, B.C.), senior vice-president of hockey operations.
“I owe a debt of gratitude to coach Ken Babey and Marshall Starkman for bringing me in,” Herrington said. “This group has allowed me to grow with the program and help build it into what it is today. It has been an enjoyable process for me, and I am eager to take on more responsibility, lead this team and work with our great staff. We are excited about the group of players in our program, and we look forward to returning to the ice for a highly competitive camp to kick off a new season.”
Herrington joined Canada’s National Para Hockey Team as a guest coach in 2015 and quickly became instrumental in the success of the program as an assistant coach. He has won a total of seven medals (one gold, six silver) in that span, including a silver medal as an assistant coach at the 2022 Paralympic Winter Games and a gold medal as an assistant coach at the 2017 IPC World Para Hockey Championship. Herrington has also served as the head coach of the York University men’s hockey team since 2017 after two seasons (2015-17) as an assistant, where he helped lead the Lions to an Ontario University Athletics (OUA) championship in 2017.
Foligno has served as an assistant coach with Canada’s National Para Hockey Team since 2018, most recently winning a silver medal at the 2022 Paralympic Winter Games. He made his para hockey coaching debut in 2017-18 as a guest coach and served as head coach of Canada’s National Para Hockey Development Team. As a player, Foligno appeared in over 1,000 NHL games with four teams and wore the Maple Leaf in three IIHF World Championships (1981, 1986, 1987), winning bronze in 1986.
Fountain is entering his fifth year as goaltending consultant with Canada’s National Para Hockey Team, having recently helped the team to a silver medal at the 2022 Paralympics. As a player, Fountain represented Canada twice on the international stage, including the 1992 IIHF World Junior Championship and 1992 Spengler Cup. Fountain enjoyed a 17-year professional playing career that included 11 NHL games.
“We are fortunate to have an incredible collection of world-class coaches and support staff to begin our 2026 Paralympic quadrennial, and we look forward to the leadership of Russ, Mike Foligno and Mike Fountain as we write the next chapter of the para hockey program,” said Starkman. “We wish to thank Ken Babey for his dedication to Canada’s National Para Hockey Team, and for his contributions to our team and athletes, as well as the game on the national and international stages.”
To start the season, Team Canada hopefuls will gather in Calgary for seven-day selection camp before a roster is named for the 2022-23 season. The staff that will work with Canada’s National Para Hockey Team at camp and throughout the season includes:
- Exercise physiologist Nicole Bewski (Winnipeg, Man./CSI Calgary)
- Physiotherapists Michael Lenart (Keswick, Ont.) and Miriam Lewis (King’s Cove, N.S.)
- Team physician Dr. Ben Cameron (Summerside, P.E.I.)
- Performance dietician Kelly Ann Erdman (Edmonton, Alta./CSI Calgary)
- Strength and conditioning coach Bryan Yu (Edmonton, Alta./CSI Calgary)
- Mental performance consultant Kyle McDonald (Regina, Sask.)
- Equipment managers Grant Boswell (Cornwall, P.E.I.) and A.J. Murley (St. John’s, N.L.)
- Guest coaches Maxime Gagnon (Longueuil, Que./Team Quebec Sledge), Kevin Hamlin (Windsor, Ont./University of Windsor, OUA) and Rob Hogg (Carleton Place, Ont./Sledge Team Ontario)
- Hockey operations coordinators Mitchell Furlotte (Bathurst, N.B.) and Hannah Curlock (Calgary, Alta.)
Following selection camp, Canada’s National Para Hockey Team will compete in the International Para Hockey Cup, set for Sept. 24-30 in Ostrava, Czechia.
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