The Prince Albert Raiders have made the first coaching change of this WHL season.
Bruno Campese, the club’s general manager and head coach, was relieved of his coaching duties on Friday. He was in his fifth season with the team.
Campese will now focus entirely on his GM's duties.
Steve Young, the club’s assistant GM and associate coach, has taken over as head coach. Craig Bedard remains on staff as assistant coach.
“Bruno Campese approached us today about making this change”, Dale McFee, a former Raiders player who now is president of the community-owned team, said in a news release. “It was a move that is not easy to make, but with our play of late it was obvious a change was required. We expect more from the players than their current record.”
Campese, a former WHL goaltender (Portland, Kelowna, 1982-84) had been the Raiders’ head coach since June 21, 2007. The 11th head coach in Raiders’ history, he added the GM’s duties to his portfolio on Jan. 14, 2008, following the dismissal of Donn Clark.
The Raiders didn’t make the playoffs through Campese’s first three seasons. Last season, they wound up eighth in the Eastern Conference and lost a six-game series to the first-place Saskatoon Blades.
This season, they are 4-11-2, good for 10th in the Eastern Conference, five points out of a playoff spot.
Young, a former assistant coach and head coach with the Moose Jaw Warriors, joined the Raiders for the 2008-09 season. He was the Warriors’ head coach when they reached the WHL final, ultimately losing to the Vancouver Giants, in the spring of 2006.
The Raiders, who have lost four in a row, next play Saturday when the Blades come calling.
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