The 2004 American Collegiate Hockey Association Women's Division Coach of the Year award goes to Chris Uschan of the University of Wisconsin - Madison, as selected by the Head Coaches of ACHA Women's Division. This is Coach Uschan's first Women's Division Coach of the Year award after two years in the finalist position.
The other finalists for the Women's Division Coach of the Year award were:
- Adam Turner of University of Colorado
- Beth McCann of University of Rhode Island
- Bill Finn of University of Massachusetts
Coach Uschan, having just completed his fifth season at the helm for the University of Wisconsin Badgers, has compiled an overall record of 94-29-14 and 55-17-6 within the ACHA for the past four years, including a 12-4-0-tournament record.
With Uschan behind the bench, the Badgers have won two ACHA National Championship titles (2002 & 2004), and is on record for being the first and only team to achieve this feat in the division. The team has also appeared in every national tournament since the origination of the division in 2000-2001, where they have finished 6th, 1st, 2nd and 1st respectively.
Under his leadership, he has produced 9 First Team All Americans, 1 Player of the Year, 1 National Tournament MVP, and 9 Academic All Americans.
Uschan has played the sport of ice hockey since the age of 7 as a goaltender. He played 4 years of NCAA D-III college hockey (?90 -?94) for the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire & -River Falls, where he earned All-American Honorable Mention. He played professionally for the Lakeland Warriors (SHL) in 1994-1995, Madison Monsters (UHL) in 1995, and the Minnesota Moose (IHL) in 1995.
Coach Uschan has been married for 8 years and has an 11-month old daughter. He is employed full time as Product Manager with national company, and lives in Cottage Grove, WI.
Coach Uschan's written acceptance of the 2004 ACHA Women's Division Coach of the Year award:
Thank you to all the ACHA Women's Division coaches and ACHA committee members for this honor. Every coach of the year nomination I read really impressed me, specifically, Adam Turner of Colorado. He took an average team, made them believers and almost led them to the championship game as a first year coach.
Give special thanks to Craig Payment and staff at Michigan State for their hard work for organizing the tournament, John Burke at Robert Morris College for his strong support towards Wisconsin, and to the many coaches I have gotten to know over the past few years.
To Zoe Harris, Chris Pendrak and Erin Russ of the ACHA Women's Division, the league has made significant improvements over the past 4 years because of you all.
And of course, without my team I wouldn't be "coach." So, a big thanks goes out to them and their performance this year.
And finally, success can be lonely reward if you cannot share it with someone close to you. Thanks to my daughter and wife for their love and support.