Toronto, ON – The Canadian Hockey League is proud to announce that Ottawa 67’s head coach Andre Tourigny is the 2019-20 recipient of the CHL’s Brian Kilrea Coach of the Year Award presented by Janes.
Tourigny guided the 67’s to a second straight Ontario Hockey League regular season title with a of 50-11-0-1 record, a CHL leading 296 goals scored, and just 164 goals against which was fewest in the OHL.
“I’d like to congratulate Andre Tourigny for being named the 2019-20 Brian Kilrea Coach of the Year,” said Paul Craft, Vice President of Marketing, Sofina Foods. “The Janes brand is proud and honoured to be a partner with the CHL and is committed to supporting communities across the country. Our production facilities are also in many of these great communities where you all play. Supporting hockey, the development of players, as well as recognizing the billet families is very important to the Janes brand.”
The 46-year-old from Nicolet, Quebec, helped this year’s 67’s equal the franchise’s all-time best mark of 50 wins set one year ago despite playing in six fewer games as a result of the abbreviated schedule. The team also set a franchise record with a 17-game winning-streak that spanned from November 16 to January 10. Another highlight of Tourigny’s season was winning gold as an assistant coach for Canada’s National Junior Team at the 2020 IIHF World Junior Championship. He will return as the program’s head coach in 2020-21.
“It’s a tremendous honour for me and my staff to get coach of the year in the CHL,” said Tourigny. “In the CHL you have 60 head coaches and staff who work really hard during the season so to be recognized by the CHL with coach of the year, me and my coaching staff are really blessed and honoured. Our ownership and our management give us all of the tools to make that happen, and I want to also thank our players for all of their support and hard work during the season to make it happen. I want to thank the Commissioners and Dan (MacKenzie) for the tremendous honour.”
Awarded annually to the coach of the year in the CHL since 1988, the trophy was renamed in 2003 to honour Hockey Hall of Fame inductee Brian Kilrea when he won his 1000th game as coach of the 67’s. Kilrea’s name is also inscribed on the award as a recipient in 1997. Tourigny’s recognition comes after two previous nominations including last season as well as in 2006 as a member of the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies. He spent a decade behind-the-bench with the Huskies from 2003-13, then moved on to the NHL for three seasons as an assistant coach with the Colorado Avalanche from 2013-15 and the Ottawa Senators for 2015-16, returned for one year with the Halifax Mooseheads in 2016-17, and has now been with the 67’s for the past three seasons. Tourigny has established himself as one of the league’s all-time greatest coaches with career figures that equal 496 wins in 961 games. As it stands, only 21 CHL coaches have ever reached 500 wins and only 19 have surpassed the 1,000 game milestone.
Finalists for the award were Brad Lauer of the Western Hockey League’s Edmonton Oil Kings and Stephane Julien of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League’s Sherbrooke Phoenix.