For years, the Lindenwood University Lions ice hockey program has been a dominant force in the collegiate hockey world. With a record of consistent success and a strong reputation for developing talented players, it’s no surprise that the program has become a top choice for aspiring hockey players. And while there are many factors that contribute to the program’s success, one of the most crucial has been the leadership of the team’s coaches.
Under the helm of long-time head coach, Rick Zombo, and recently named assistant coach, Cale Morris, the Lindenwood Lions have built a legacy of excellence on and off the ice. But what exactly sets their leadership apart from other programs and how has it impacted the team? Let’s take a closer look at the Lindenwood Coach Legacy and the impact it has had on the program.
A Winning Tradition
Since the team’s inception in 2003, Lindenwood hockey has experienced immense success, making it one of the most successful programs in the American Collegiate Hockey Association (ACHA). With a record of 397 wins, 140 losses, and 46 ties, the Lions have cemented a winning tradition that is unmatched by many other programs.
And this winning tradition is largely due to the leadership of head coach, Rick Zombo. With 15 seasons under his belt, Zombo has established himself as one of the winningest coaches in ACHA history. He has led the Lions to a total of eight national championship finals appearances, with three national championships in 2009, 2010, and 2016. In addition, Zombo has produced an impressive list of alumni, including NHL players Jaden Schwartz and Dalton Prout.
But it’s not just about winning games for Zombo. He has also created a culture of integrity and hard work within the team, instilling important values that extend beyond the rink. This has not only fostered a winning atmosphere, but has also earned the respect and admiration of his players and colleagues.
Another crucial aspect of the Lindenwood Coach Legacy is their ability to develop talented players. With a strong emphasis on player development, Zombo and Morris have helped many players reach their full potential and continue their careers beyond Lindenwood.
In fact, Lindenwood has seen a great number of players move on to play at the professional level, with many signing contracts with teams in the NHL, ECHL, AHL, and other professional leagues around the world. This is a testament to the coaching staff’s dedication and expertise, and their unwavering commitment to helping their players achieve their dreams.
But it’s not just about developing players for the professional level. Zombo and Morris also prioritize the personal growth of their players, helping them reach their full potential both on and off the ice. They work closely with their players, not only as coaches, but also as mentors, providing guidance and support throughout their time at Lindenwood.
Creating a Family Atmosphere
One of the most unique aspects of the Lindenwood hockey program is the sense of family that has been cultivated by the coaching staff. This is evident by the way players and coaches interact both on and off the ice, and the strong bonds that are formed between teammates.
Zombo and Morris have created a culture of inclusivity and respect, where everyone feels valued and supported. This has not only fostered a positive team dynamic, but has also contributed to the success of the team as a whole. Players feel a sense of belonging and are motivated to play for each other, not just for individual success.
Looking to the Future
As the Lindenwood Coach Legacy continues to thrive, the future looks bright for the Lions hockey program. With a winning tradition, a strong emphasis on player development, and a tight-knit family atmosphere, Zombo and Morris have solidified the program’s reputation as a top destination for collegiate hockey players.
And with the admiration and respect they have earned from their players and colleagues, it’s clear that the impact of their leadership will continue to be felt for years to come. The Lindenwood Lions are a true testament to the important role coaches play in shaping the success of a team and their players.