Four-Year Contract Extension for Damon Whitten

Whitten, who was named the 10th head coach in program history in April 2014, is highly respected among his collegiate hockey coaching peers and has developed a reputation as an enthusiastic, tireless worker both on and off the ice.

“University presidents look for qualities of character more than records when assessing coaches,” said President Dr. Peter T. Mitchell. “Damon Whitten is a person of great personal integrity and genuine compassion for his players. He emphasizes sportsmanship, hard work, and a commitment to excel on the ice and in the classroom. His team’s GPA is consistently above 3.0 and the current players are great ambassadors in the community.

“Winning traditions in collegiate and professional sports have one thing in common – they trust and support a coach of integrity and they eventually become winners. I trust Damon and his assistant coaches; I believe in them and in the players. I have been particularly proud of the way they all have responded to adversity and finished the season with sweeps at Bemidji and Anchorage. With this new contract, I look forward to Coach Whitten building a hockey program at Lake State known for integrity, grit, and class, on and off the ice.”

In his four years at the helm of the program, Whitten has made it a priority to rebuild the Lake State Hockey tradition, while targeting increased community involvement, connecting with the student body and excellence in the classroom.

On behalf of our staff and our families I would like to thank Dr. Peter Mitchell and Dr. David Paitson for their support and the opportunity to continue to lead the storied hockey program at LSSU.Damon Whitten, Hockey Coach

With an assistant coaching staff consisting of Sault Ste. Marie native Rich Metro and NHL veteran Mike York, the Laker hockey program has continued to focus on recruiting high-level talent with an emphasis on individuals seeking a complete student-athlete experience.

“We are very excited to continue to have Damon at the helm of the Lake State hockey program,” said Director of Athletics Dr. David Paitson. “We believe Damon’s leadership and dedication will help reestablish the Laker Hockey program as one of the elite programs in college hockey.”

“As a department, we are aiming to build stability throughout our coaching staff, and retaining a high-level leader with a commitment to our vision, such as Damon, goes a long way in helping us reach our goals.”

With a healthy mix of returning upperclassman and an injection of young talent, the Lakers are poised to be very competitive throughout the Western Collegiate Hockey Association next season.

Meet Alyssa Barker, Admissions Recruiter

Alyssa Barker

"I am from Grand Rapids, Michigan. When I started at Lake Superior State University, I did not know anyone in the Eastern Upper Peninsula. Four years and a lot of memories later, I graduated from LSSU knowing the community, the students, the staff, and even myself better than I expected was possible. The genuine care and cohesiveness of the LSSU community is to credit for this. Lake State boasts a private college experience at a public university price, and I can assure you, that’s not just a marketing tool. As a senior psychology student, I got to work hand in hand with psychology professors to conduct a full quantitative research study. Access to this kind of education and cohesive environment is why I loved being a student here, why I want to continue to be a part of Lake State, and why I am so excited to encourage future students to attend here as an Admissions Recruiter. Lake Superior State University is truly a university unlike any other!"

About the Author

Cullen MaksimowskiCullen Maksimowski
Sports Information & Communication Specialist

Cullen graduated from Central Michigan University in 2016 with B.A.A in Integrative Public Relations and Sport Management. Prior to joining LSSU as the Athletic Communications Director in November, Cullen was an athletic communications assistant at Cornerstone University and spent four years as a student assistant in CMU Athletic Communications Department. In his spare time, Cullen enjoys hiking, backpacking, kayaking and mountain biking.