Idaho Steelheads coach Brad Ralph resigns, takes job in WHL

BOISE — Brad Ralph, the new head coach of the Kelowna Rockets in the Western Hockey League, leaves the Steelheads after three ECHL seasons with a record of  132-64-20 for a winning percentage of .657. He guided the Steelheads to two of the best regular seasons in the team’s ECHL era, earning 97 points in his first season (2012-13) and 102 points this past season.

“People notice when you have success, and coach Ralph had a lot of success here,” Steelheads President Eric Trapp said. “We appreciate the time and effort he put in here and expect him to continue to have success in his future endeavors. He and his family represented this organization well, and we’re thankful for that.”

Trapp said he expects to have Ralph’s successor named in the near future.

Ralph explained his decision to Idaho Sports Talk on KTIK 93.1 FM:

“The main difference was just the model of the league, these are young players drafted into the league and will stay with the team and the league for three, four, five years down the road,” Ralph said. “I’m just coaching now. My main goal is to win hockey games.”

The Steelheads open the regular season Friday, Oct. 16, at home against the Rapid City Rush. It is the first of 36 home games, each of which will be played at CenturyLink Arena in Downtown Boise.