Scott Paluch (Chicago, Ill.) has been named head coach of the U.S. Youth Olympic Boys’ Ice Hockey Team that will compete in the 2016 Winter Youth Olympic Games from Feb. 12-21, 2016, in Lillehammer, Norway, it was announced today by USA Hockey. Additionally, J.D. Forrest (Auburn, N.Y.) has been named assistant coach and TC Lewis (Richmond, Texas) team leader.
Paluch, who is currently a regional manager for USA Hockey’s American Development Model, has more than two decades of experience behind the bench.
Most recently, he served as an assistant coach for the U.S. Men’s National Under-18 Team that earned gold at the 2014 International Ice Hockey Federation’s Under-18 Men’s World Championship in Lappeenranta, Finland.
Previously, Paluch was the head coach for the 2001 U.S. Under-17 Select Team that competed in the Under-17 Four Nations Tournament in Prievidza, Slovakia, and an assistant coach for the U.S. Under-18 Select Team that played in the 2000 Under-18 Four Nations Tournament in Kezmarok, Slovakia.
Paluch spent 15 years as a collegiate coach, including seven years (2002-09) as head coach of his alma mater, Bowling Green State University. He was also an assistant coach at Boston College from 1994-2002 where he helped lead BC to the NCAA Division I national championship in 2001.
Forrest, who played three seasons (1997-00) for USA Hockey’s National Team Development Program, was an intern coach at the NTDP in 2014-15, working with the U.S. National Under-18 Team. A sixth-round draft pick of the Carolina Hurricanes in 2000, Forrest spent 11 years playing professional hockey and represented the U.S. at the 1999 IIHF Under-18 Men’s World Championship in Fussen and Kaufbeuren, Germany, and 2001 IIHF World Junior Championship in Moscow and Podolsk, Russia. He is in his first season as co-coach of EC Red Bull Salzburg’s farm team.
Lewis is a district director for USA Hockey’s Rocky Mountain District and a member of USA Hockey’s Youth Council. He also is general manager and hockey director of the Aerodrome Ice Skating Complex in Houston, Texas.
NOTES: The staff of the 2016 U.S. Youth Olympic Boys’ Ice Hockey Team is subject to the approval of the United States Olympic Committee … USA Hockey’s Boys Select 15 Player Development Camp, which is currently taking place in Williamsville, New York, will be used as a primary evaluation tool in determining the final roster … The roster will include 17 players, all under the age of 16. USA Hockey expects to release the final roster this fall … In the first-ever Youth Winter Olympic Games in 2012, the U.S. Youth Olympic Boys’ Ice Hockey Team finished fourth … Created by the International Olympic Committee, the Youth Olympic Games bring youth athletes from around the world together through sports and the Olympic values of excellence, respect and friendship.