The Saginaw Spirit have named Spencer Carbery their new head coach. Spirit GM Dave Drinkill announced today that Carbery will be taking over the head coaching duties as the team prepares for its fifteenth season in the ontario hockey league.
“This is an exciting day for our franchise as we add the most critical building block to the foundation of the Saginaw Spirit,” Drinkill said via email press release. “It is my pleasure to welcome Spencer Carbery, his wife Casey, and their two children Hudson and Vivian to the Saginaw Spirit family. I would like to thank the South Carolina Stingrays organization for their cooperation in this process. Spencer is a person of very high character who possesses a tremendous work ethic and an unmatched passion for the game. The progression that his team made over the last five years in South Carolina is remarkable. As an organization, we are confident in Spencer's ability to lead our players both on and off the ice.”
Carbery, 34, grew up in Victoria, BC and played junior hockey in the British Columbia Hockey League before going on to play NCAA division one hockey for the University of Alaska-Anchorage and eventually St. Norbert College.
“My family and I are thrilled to become part of the Great Lakes Bay region and the Saginaw Spirit organization,” Carbery said. “ I want to thank Mr. Dick Garber, Mr. Craig Goslin, and Dave Drinkill for giving me this tremendous opportunity to lead the Spirit hockey team into this exciting, new chapter of the franchise.”
After college, Carbery signed a free agent contract with the Tulsa Oilers of the now defunct Central Hockey League before descending on a four year career in the East Coast Hockey League.
He joined the South Carolina Stingrays as an assistant coach for the 2010-11 season and was subsequently named head coach for the 2011-12 season. He joins the Spirit after eight seasons with the same organization. He played his last two seasons as a player, one as an assistant coach, and then five seasons as head coach for the Stingrays where he had a combined 207-115 record.
He helped the Stingrays win an ECHL Kelly Cup championship in 2009 as a player, also making the playoffs every season as a head coach, reaching the finals in 2015.
“I've learned so much from being a part of the South Carolina Stingrays organization, first as a player, then transitioning into coaching over the past eight years. I can't wait to get started in Saginaw and create a culture of excellence and putting my heart and soul into this team and community.”
“It was crucial for me during this search to leave no stone un-turned in order to find the right person to lead our team,” Drinkill continued. “Spencer's vision and values align perfectly with the culture we are trying to build here in Saginaw. I know the staff we have put in place within our hockey operations department will continue to be open to new ideas and approaches to the game, with an end goal of bringing a championship to our city. This is an exciting time for our players, staff, and most importantly, our great fans.”
Carbery becomes the organizations seventh head coach in its fifteen year history in the OHL, following Dennis Desrosiers, Moe Mantha, Doug Lidster, Bob Mancini, Todd Watson, and Greg Gilbert.