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By EHP, 08/20/18, 10:30PM EDT



 August 20, 2018

 Guilford, Conn.— The Elite Hockey Program, a proud member of the Atlantic Youth Hockey League (AYHL) and East Coast Elite League (ECEL), announce Phil Esposito as the 2018-2019 18U head coach.

 Esposito brings a winning resume to the Elite Hockey Program with a history of fast-paced and hard-working teams that fits the culture of our organization.  Esposito has extensive head coaching experience at the professional ranks. Last season he spent time as the head coach of the Fayetteville Marksmen in the SPHL.  Before joining the Marksmen, Esposito coached the Watertown Wolves of the FHL. During his last season with them, they finished the season with a 27-23-2-4 record and earned a spot in the Commissioner Cup playoffs.

 The East Haven, Conn. native led the Danbury Whalers for six seasons before moving to the FHL and SPHL. Esposito brought the Danbury franchise to the 2015-16 season FHL Commissioner Cup Finals and led the team to a 161-106-29 record.

 Prior to beginning his coaching career, Esposito had a successful professional career, where he spent most of his days playing professionally in the ECHL. He played for six different teams, appearing in 66 ECHL contests.

“On the ice, we will be the hardest working team night in and night out. We want players who will be proud to be part of the Elite Hockey Program and who fully understand and appreciate what it means to be members of this organization,” said Esposito.

"We're excited about adding Phil Esposito to our organization,” Elite Hockey Program President and General Manager Peter Alden said. “Phil has terrific head coaching experience and has a proven track record of success. After having the opportunity to get to know Phil, it is evident that we are in synch on our development philosophy.

“I am very happy and honored that my return to Connecticut is with the Elite Hockey Program,” said Esposito. “It is no secret that the Elite Hockey Program is one of the fastest growing programs in the northeast right now, and I look forward to continuing the high standard the organization has set.”

“Phil exemplifies everything we look for in a coach - a fierce desire to win and a passion for taking players to the next level. I look forward to the upcoming season with Phil Esposito at the helm,” commented Alden. 

Former U18 head coach, Luke Curadi has transitioned his work career to sales at Sherwin Williams. “We want to thank Luke Curadi for his efforts over the past two years in our organization. In his time with the Elite Hockey Program, Curadi fulfilled his obligations to the fullest, while representing our organization in a first-class manner,” added President, Peter Alden.

While a coach for the Elite Hockey Program 18U team, Curadi and Austin Root brought the team to a [46-25-5 record] (2018), placing the U18 Elite # 2 in the ECEL standings and advancing to the NAPHL playoffs in their first season in the league (2018).

“We want to thank Luke for his time here,” Alden said. “As we look towards the future, we are excited to see what Phil brings to the team.”

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