COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – USA Hockey announced today that Joel Johnson (White Bear Lake, Minn.), associate head coach of the University of Minnesota women's ice hockey team, has been named head coach of the U.S. Women's National Under-18 Team for the 2017-18 season. Joining him as an associate coach will be Maura Crowell (Mansfield, Mass.), head women's ice hockey coach at the University of Minnesota-Duluth, while Courtney Kennedy (Woburn, Mass.), associate head women's ice hockey coach at Boston College, will be an assistant coach.
“We've enjoyed considerable success with Joel in recent years and we look forward to having him guide our program for another season," said Reagan Carey, director of women’s hockey at USA Hockey. "Along with Maura and Courtney, we're confident they will help our players reach their fullest potential."
Johnson will lead the U.S. Women's National Under-18 Team at the 2017 Women's Under-18 Series against Canada in Lake Placid, New York, from August 17-20, and at the International Ice Hockey Federation Under-18 Women's World Championship that is anticipated to take place in early 2018.
Johnson will also participate at the USA Hockey Girls' Under-18 Select Camp that will take place June 24-30, at the University of New England in Biddeford, Maine, and the USA Hockey Girls' Under-18 Player Development Camp (July 15-21) and Girls' 15 Player Development Camp (July 8-12) that are taking place at St. Cloud State University in St. Cloud, Minnesota.
Johnson is serving as head coach of the U.S. Women's National Under-18 Team for the fourth consecutive season after leading Team USA to the gold medal in three consecutive (2015, 2016 and 2017) IIHF Under-18 Women's World Championships. Johnson has additional experience with USA Hockey as a member of the coaching staff for the 2012 IIHF Under-18 Women's World Championship and a pair of Women's Under-18 Series (2013-14). He has also served as a coach at various U.S. Women's Select Festivals.
"It's always an honor to serve as the head coach of the U.S. Women's National Under-18 Team and I look forward to another successful season," said Johnson. "I love working with our young players and aspire to help them achieve their goals while representing USA Hockey."
Johnson completed his 12th season as an assistant coach at the University of Minnesota in 2016-17. During two stints, Johnson has been a part of six national titles (2000, 2004, 2012-13, 2015-16) with the Golden Gophers. He originally served as an assistant coach from 1999-2004 and returned to the University of Minnesota in the same capacity in 2010-11 after a six-year hiatus.
Johnson also spent six seasons coaching at Bethel University from 2004-10, including three years as the men's hockey head coach. Along with his men's hockey responsibilities, he was also the men's and women's golf coach and prior to that was the soccer coach where he earned MIAC Coach of the Year honors.
Crowell will be making her second U.S. Women's National Under-18 Team coaching appearance following her debut with Team USA in 2015. She has also taken part in various USA Hockey development camps and festivals in recent years. Crowell has served as the head coach of the women’s ice hockey team at the University of Minnesota-Duluth for the past two seasons and was named the CCM/AHCA Division I Women’s Coach of the Year. Prior to joining the Bulldogs, she spent five years with Harvard University in various coaching capacities. Crowell joined the Crimson after a five-year stint as head coach at UMass Boston. She was named the 2009-10 Eastern College Athletic Conference East Women’s Ice Hockey Coach of the Year. Before her time at UMass Boston, Crowell spent two seasons as an assistant coach with Connecticut College and was an assistant coach with the hockey team and head coach of the junior varsity women’s lacrosse team at St. Mark’s School in Southborough, Massachusetts. As a player, Crowell was a member of the Colgate women’s ice hockey team.
Kennedy will be returning for her fourth stint as an assistant coach with U.S. Women's National Under-18 Team. She helped Team USA win gold at the 2017 IIHF Under-18 Women’s World Championship and silver twice (2013, 2014). Kennedy recently completed her 11th season at Boston College, most recently serving as associate head women's ice hockey coach. In 2015, Kennedy was honored by her peers with the AHCA Women’s Ice Hockey Assistant Coach Award. She has helped guide the Eagles to several titles, including the 2016 NCAA Championship game and six NCAA Frozen Fours (2011, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017). Prior to her time with Boston College, she spent three years as the head women’s ice hockey coach at Buckingham Browne and Nichols School in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Kennedy is a two-time member of the U.S. Women’s Olympic Ice Hockey Team (2002- silver, 2006- bronze) and also captured the gold medal at the 2005 IIHF Women’s World Championship as a member of the U.S. Women’s National Team. Kennedy earned several accolades during her playing career and was a two-time All-American at Minnesota in 1999 and 2001. In 2008, she was inducted into the Minnesota "M" Club Hall of Fame.
NOTES: Reagan Carey (Colorado Springs, Colo.), USA Hockey's director of women's hockey, is the general manager of the 2017-18 U.S. Women's National Under-18 Team ... Approximately 30 players will be invited to the U.S Women's National Under-18 Evaluation Camp August 8-14, in Lake Placid, New York. The camp will culminate with the selection of a 22-player roster that will represent the U.S. in a three-game series against Canada from August 17-20 in Lake Placid, New York ... The IIHF Under-18 Women's World Championship is scheduled to be played for the 11th time and will include teams from Canada, the Czech Republic, Finland, Germany, Russia, Sweden, Switzerland and the United States. The dates and location of the tournament will be announced in the near future. Team USA, the three-time reigning world champion, captured gold in each of the first two years of the tournament (2008, 2009) and again in 2011, 2015, 2016 and 2017 ... The team has taken home the silver medal in 2010, 2012, 2013 and 2014.