Coach Derek Schooley receives 4-year extension

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Robert Morris agreed to a four-year contract extension Monday with men’s hockey coach Derek Schooley, a deal that runs through the 2019-2020 season.

Last season, Schooley led the Colonials to the Atlantic Hockey Association championship and the program’s first appearance in the NCAA tournament.

“I’m extremely thankful and grateful to Robert Morris’ athletic staff, [athletic director] Dr. [Craig] Coleman, as well as the president, Dr. [Gregory] Dell’Omo to agreeing to the extension,” Schooley, 43, said. “It’s nice to have that security going into the future from here on out.”

The only men’s hockey coach in school history, Schooley just completed his 10th season with the Colonials. In that time, he is 143-175-45, a record that includes an active streak of four consecutive non-losing seasons.

After starting last season 2-12-1, the Colonials lost just six of their final 26 games, a run that took them through the AHA tournament. The sixth and final loss came to top-ranked Minnesota, 7-3, in the first round of the NCAA tournament.

Robert Morris returns 19 of its 26 players from last season, including leading scorer Cody Wydo (31 goals, 54 points).

As coach of the lone Division I hockey program in the Pittsburgh area, Schooley is optimistic about the Colonials’ future, the kind of confidence that comes with the added security of a contract extension.

“Any time you have success, things start happening,” Schooley said. “With how recruiting is, you can’t really go into the last year of your contract.

“To be able to get recruits far in advance, you have to have some security. When recruits ask how long you’re going to be there, you can give them an answer.”

Craig Meyer: and Twitter @CraigMeyerPG. First Published July 21, 2014 12:00 AM

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