Junior Hockey: WarHawks promote White to head coach
Connor White takes over Willmar's NA3HL team after being the associate head coach
WILLMAR — Connor White moves up the ladder for the Willmar WarHawks junior hockey team.
White has been named the NA3HL team's new head coach on Tuesday.
He replaces Kirk Olimb, who left after the season to become head men's hockey coach at Concordia College in Moorhead.
White was his top assistant, having the title of associate head coach.
"I'm very excited to take on the role as head coach of the Willmar WarHawks, continuing to strengthen the successful reputation that has been built over the last couple of seasons," White said in a statement.
Willmar had one of its best seasons as a franchise in 2021-22, going 32-14-1 and making the Fraser Cup Playoffs. The WarHawks won their first playoff game and playoff series.
White is originally from upstate New York. He coached high school hockey there, then moved on to the East Coast Hockey League, where he was an assistant for the Adirondack Thunder. After that, he was an assistant coach at Morrisville State College, an NCAA Division III program, for three seasons.
He then joined the Chippewa Steel in Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin, a member of the NAHL as an assistant coach in the 2019-20 season before coming to Willmar.
Brady O'Brien, a former defenseman for the WarHawks, has committed to Concordia College in Moorhead to continue his career. The Cobbers are an NCAA Division III program who recently named Olimb head coach.
O'Brien is a 5-foot-10, 190-pounder from White Bear Lake. He finished his junior career with eight goals and 50 assists in 92 games over two seasons. He played for Willmar in 2020-21, then moved up to the NAHL where he played for the Chippewa Steel in Wisconsin.