Courtesy of Princeton Athletic Communications
PRINCETON, N.J. -- Bob Prier, who has spent the past nine seasons on the coaching staff at St. Lawrence University, has been named the head men's hockey coach at Princeton University. Prier was officially introduced at a press conference on Tuesday in the Class of '56 Lounge at Princeton Stadium.
"It is my pleasure to announce the appointment of Bob Prier as Princeton's new Head Coach of Ice Hockey," Princeton Director of Athletics Gary Walters '67 said. "The combination of Bob's stellar ECAC playing career, coaching experience, and belief in Princeton's ethos of Education Through Athletics made Bob a compelling choice of the Advisory Committee. Bob is genuinely enthused about taking over the reins and he will be a great Ambassador for Princeton Hockey."
Prier has served first as an assistant and more recently as an associate head coach at St. Lawrence University. Since joining the St. Lawrence coaching staff for the 2002-03 season, Prier has helped St. Lawrence to three 21-plus win seasons, including an ECAC regular season championship and NCAA tournament appearance in the 2006-07 season.
"I would like to thank Gary Walters and the advisory committee for giving me this opportunity," Prier said. "I sincerely appreciate the confidence that they have shown in me to become the next head coach at Princeton. It is an unbelievable opportunity for both my family and me and we look forward to becoming reacclimated with Princeton University and its hockey program. I also would like to thank all the coaches and players that I have worked with in the past as it is their influence that brings me here today."
Prier will take over a Princeton program that is currently in its best five-year run in program history under previous head coach Guy Gadowsky, who took the head coaching job at Penn State two weeks ago. Princeton has hosted an ECAC Hockey playoff series in each of the last five years and has finished in the top half of the ECAC standings in four of the five seasons. Princeton's last three graduating classes have each completed their college careers as the winningest class in program history.
"The Princeton hockey program is in a terrific state," Prier added. "As a coach in the league, I have witnessed firsthand the quality of player on the Princeton roster. They work hard and are fun to watch. Guy Gadowsky and his staff have done a fabulous job building the program. I appreciate it very much and look forward to continued success."
"I am thrilled to hear of the hiring of Bob at Princeton," Gadowsky said. "He's a great all-around guy and he is a man of a lot of substance. I have really enjoyed watching his teams compete and play over the past seven seasons. They play an exciting brand of hockey, which will fit in perfectly with what Princeton fans and alumni have come to expect in the past few years."
Prier graduated from St. Lawrence with a degree in economics in 1999. The captain of St. Lawrence's 1999 ECAC runner-up and NCAA tournament team, Prier was the recipient of the Brian P. Doyle Memorial Trophy for leadership abilities on and off the ice. Prier led that team in scoring and was a second-team All-ECAC selection. Prier played in 133 games in his college career and collected 60 goals and 56 assists for 116 points.
A 1996 draftee of the Boston Bruins, Prier signed with the Ottawa Senators after graduation but his playing career was cut short after just three games in the minor leagues because of injury. Prier then went to work as a player's agent for one year before getting into the coaching ranks as a volunteer assistant coach at the University of Denver. Prier spent one year at Denver and then moved east to Princeton, where he served as an assistant coach for 2001-02 season before returning to St. Lawrence as an assistant. Prier earned his master's degree in education from St. Lawrence in 2004.