P.K. O'Handley of the Waterloo Black Hawks tied the United States Hockey League record for coaching victories when his team beat the Youngstown Phantoms 4-3 on Friday at Covelli Centre in Ohio.
O'Handley has a 529-441-74 record in his 19 seasons in the USHL, the past 12 with Waterloo. He's tied with Mike Hastings, who went 529-210-56 with the Omaha/River City Lancers from 1994-2008. Hastings is now head coach at Minnesota State University.
O'Handley's 1,044 games behind the bench are the most in USHL history.
O'Handley can surpass Hastings on Saturday when the Blackhawks (26-5-1) visit the Ann Arbor Ice Cube in Michigan to face the United States Under-18 National Team Development Program. Waterloo has outscored its opponents 130-84 this season and is 12-3-1 on the road.
Two former standouts for O'Handley in Waterloo, Florida Panthers prospect Ian McCoshen and Chicago Blackhawks prospect Vincent Hinostroza, are excited for their former coach. McCoshen and Hinostroza represented the United States at the 2014 IIHF World Junior Championship in Malmo, Sweden.
"P.K. and that entire staff were very influential on my entire hockey development," McCoshen, a defenseman, told NHL.com. "I lived with him for a year [in my first season in 2010-11] while in Waterloo, and one of the most important things he taught me was how to be a pro. He taught me how to handle life away from the rink in order to complete myself as an all-around player and person."
McCoshen, drafted by the Panthers in the second round (No. 31) last June, played three seasons in Waterloo; he scored 19 goals and finished with 70 points in 150 games.
"I'm so happy that he's on the verge of setting that wins record," McCoshen said.
Hinostroza also played three seasons for O'Handley and was drafted in the sixth round (No. 169) by the Blackhawks in 2012. He had 53 goals and 126 points in 151 games with Waterloo.
"The main thing he taught me was to bring it every game," Hinostroza told NHL.com. "He told me to do your job. Waterloo was a great place to play and I learned so much on and off the ice with them. The USHL is a great league. A lot of great players come out of there; it did wonders for me."