COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Luke Strand (Eau Claire, Wis.), who is set to start his first season as head men’s ice hockey coach at Minnesota State University this fall, will serve as head coach of the U.S. Under-18 Men's Select Team that will compete in the upcoming 2023 Hlinka Gretzky Cup, it was announced today by USA Hockey.
The tournament is set for August 1-6 in Břeclav, Czechia, and Piešťany, Slovakia.
Strand will be joined by assistant coaches Karl Goehring (Apple Valley, Minn.), Jimmy Mullin (Philadelphia, Pa.) and Nick Oliver (Wannaska, Minn.).
Strand will serve as head coach of the Under-18 Men's Select Team for the first time, having previously worked as an assistant coach for the U.S. Junior Select Team that won the 2010 World Junior A Challenge.
Strand, who boasts 20 years of coaching experience, wrapped the 2022-23 season as an assistant men’s ice hockey coach at Ohio State University where he orchestrated the program’s top-ranked penalty kill unit (.887) and helped the Buckeyes to a 21-16-3 record, a third-place finish in the Big Ten Conference and a berth in the 2023 NCAA Tournament.
Prior to his time in Columbus, Strand served as head coach and director of hockey operations for the USHL’s Sioux City Musketeers for five seasons (2017-22), guiding the team to the Clark Cup title in 2022 behind a 41-16-4-1 (W-L-OTL-SOL) record. The Eau Claire, Wisconsin, native also coached the Musketeers to playoff berths in 2019 and 2021. Before his time at the helm in Sioux City, Strand spent one year as a scout for the NHL’s Calgary Flames (2016-17) and had stops in the AHL, NCAA and USHL between 2003-16.
Goehring, who is set to begin his fifth season as an assistant coach for the University of North Dakota men’s ice hockey program this fall, is making his international coaching debut as an assistant coach of the 2023 Under-18 Men's Select Team.
In his four seasons behind the bench, Goehring has helped guide the Fighting Hawks to two NCAA Tournament appearances (2021, 2022), three Penrose Cups as NCHC regular-season champions (2019-20, 2020-21, 2021-22) and one Frozen Faceoff title (2021) as NCHC playoff champions. Prior to his time in Grand Forks, he spent two seasons (2017-19) with the AHL’s Syracuse Crunch as the goaltending and video coach after seven campaigns (2010-2017) as a volunteer goaltending coach for North Dakota.
A UND alum, Goehring had an impressive playing career that led him to the NHL’s Nashville Predators and included stops in the AHL and ECHL. Additionally, the Apple Valley, Minnesota, native was in net for the U.S. Men’s National Team at the 2000 IIHF Men’s World Championship.
Assistant Coach Karl Goehring
Mullin, who served as an assistant coach for Team USA at the 2022 IIHF Under-18 Men’s World Championship where the U.S. brought home a silver medal and 2022 Five Nations Tournament where the U.S. finished second, is serving as an assistant coach for the U.S. Under-18 Men's Select Team for the first time.
The Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, native, who helped the USA Hockey National Team Development Program’s Under-17 team to the 2023 Clark Cup Playoffs, recently wrapped his his third season as an assistant coach at the NTDP. Mullin also had stints as the Ohio AAA Blue Jackets director of player development and advancement, and as director of scouting for the NAHL's Chippewa Steel.
Mullin played five seasons of college hockey, including four (2011-15) at Miami University (Ohio) and one (2015-16) at Minnesota State University, before going on to play three years (2016-19) professionally with the ECHL’s Kalamazoo Wings. He also played for Team USA at the 2010 World Jr. A Challenge where he led the tournament in goals, including the game-winner in the championship game.
Assistant Coach Jimmy Mullin
Oliver, who helped guide Team USA to a second-place finish at the 2022 Five Nations Tournament and a third-place effort at the 2019 World Junior A Challenge, is serving as an assistant coach for the U.S. Under-18 Men's Select Team for the first time.
Set to begin his first season as an assistant men’s ice hockey coach at the University of Wisconsin this fall, Oliver spent the 2022-23 campaign as head coach of the USHL's Fargo Force, leading the franchise to its first Anderson Cup as USHL regular-season champions and was named USHL Coach of the Year.
Prior to his time in North Dakota, he spent four years (2018-22) as an assistant men’s ice hockey coach at St. Cloud State University, where he helped the Huskies to their first-ever NCAA national championship game appearance in 2021 and to the Penrose Cup as NCHC regular-season champions in 2018-19. The Wannaska, Minnesota, native played collegiately at St. Cloud State (2011-15) and has served as a USA Hockey National Player Development Camp coach on multiple occasions.
Assistant Coach Nick Oliver
USA Hockey has also announced additional staff in support of the 2023 U.S. Under-18 Men's Select Team, including general manager Marc Boxer (Colorado Springs, Colo.); equipment managers Ross Chicantek (Portage, Mich.) and Andrew Zagorianakos (Providence County, R.I.); athletic trainer Jacqui Gutierrez (Charleston, S.C.); team physician Dr. Anthony Abene (Los Gatos, Calif.); team leader Parker Metz (Fargo, N.D.) and player personnel Tony Gasparini (Lakeville, Minn.) and Troy Ward (North Saint Paul, Minn.).
NOTES: To follow Team USA throughout the 2023 Hlinka Gretzky Cup, click here ... The U.S. Under-18 Men's Select Team has earned 15 top-three finishes all-time in tournament play.