OILERS NAME JEFF TRUITT ASSISTANT COACH IN SPRINGFIELD
/ Edmonton Oilers
The Edmonton Oilers have named an assistant coach for their American Hockey League affiliate as Jeff Truitt will join Geoff Ward behind the bench of the Springfield Falcons in 2007-08.
Truitt joins the Falcons following an outstanding junior coaching career with the Kelowna Rockets of the Western Hockey League. The 42-year-old native of Rosetown, Saskatchewan leaves Kelowna after seven seasons as a member of the team’s coaching staff, including the last three seasons as head coach. Truitt joined the Rockets in 2000-01 and served four seasons (2000-01 to 2003-04) as an assistant coach with former Oiler Marc Habscheid before becoming the head coach in 2004-05.
In his three seasons as the Rockets’ head coach, Truitt compiled a 113-76-18-9 (W-L-OTL-SOL) record, winning one WHL championship and advancing to the Memorial Cup tournament in 2005. During the 2004-05 season, Truitt guided the Rockets to a 45-13-12-2 (.722) record and a second place finish in the league’s British Columbia Division, before going 16-8 in the post-season to win the WHL championship. With the victory, Truitt and the Rockets advanced to their third consecutive Memorial Cup tournament, finishing in fourth place with a 0-3 record.
In 2005-06 Truitt once again led Kelowna to a second place finish in the British Columbia Division standings with a record of 46-22-1-3 (.667) and advanced to the WHL western conference semi-finals before falling to the Everett Silvertips in six games. This past season saw the Rockets miss the post-season with a record of 22-41-5-4 (.368).
During his seven seasons on the Rockets coaching staff, Truitt helped guide Kelowna to two Western Hockey League championships (2003, 2005), two WHL regular season titles (2003, 2004), three consecutive trips to the Memorial Cup tournament (2003, 2004, 2005) and one Memorial Cup championship (2004). In 2004 the Rockets were a perfect 4-0 at the Memorial Cup, winning their first CHL title before a sellout crowd of home fans at Prospera Place with a 2-1 win over Gatineau.
Prior to joining Kelowna, he served as an assistant coach with the WHL’s Lethbridge Hurricanes (1994-95 to 1996-97) and was the head coach of the Camrose Kodiaks for their first three seasons (1997-98 to 1999-2000) in the Alberta Junior Hockey League. While with Camrose, he was co-coach of the AJHL All-Star Selects, finishing second at the 2000 Viking Cup tournament.
Truitt also has international coaching experience with Team Canada. He served as video coach for the silver medal winning 2004 Canadian National Junior Team, was an assistant coach with Canada’s gold medal winning Under-18 Team in August 2006 in Slovakia and the Czech Republic, and most recently, he was an assistant coach with Canada’s World Under-18 team that placed fourth at the 2007 world tournament in Finland.
Born on May 4, 1965 in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, Truitt and his wife Shauna, have a son, Cale (6) and a daughter, Kerrington (3).