Alabama-Huntsville interim head coach Lance West had his interim tag dropped on Wednesday, as the school announced that he will be the Chargers new head coach.
West officially replaces former head coach Mike Corbett, who resigned from Alabama-Huntsville shortly after a last-minute fundraising campaign saved the program from extinction.
West is an alum of Alabama-Huntsville and served as an assistant coach at the school in the early 2000s. He then spent eleven seasons as an assistant at Alaska-Fairbanks, before returning to Huntsville as an assistant in 2018.
He will inherit a difficult, if not impossible situation in Huntsville next season. The Chargers were already one of the worst teams in college hockey last season, finishing 58th out of 60 teams, marking the 10th consecutive finished they have finished in the bottom-10 of the country. In addition, the announcement this spring that Alabama-Huntsville would be dropping the sport allowed a free transfer to any of their current players that could find another team willing to take them. The teams two top scorers, Josh Latta and Christian Rajic, as well as promising freshman Liam Izyk all transferred.
Longer-term prospects are equally grim. This will be Alabama-Huntsville’s last year in the WCHA before the league likely dissolves with seven members leaving the conference to join the newly-reformed CCHA.