LONDON, Ont. – The Western Mustangs women's hockey team is pleased to announce the hiring of Kelly Paton as the team's full-time associate coach. Paton will begin her role on June 1, 2015.
"Kelly is one of the top young coaches in the country and we're excited to have her join our program on a full-time basis," said Thérèse Quigley, director of Western Sport and Recreation Services. "Having Kelly on staff full-time will greatly enhance the experience of our student-athletes, and I know our senior coaching staff is looking forward to working with her and serving as mentors on a daily basis."
Paton is no stranger to the women's hockey program at Western, serving as the team's player development coach for the 2014-15 season. She also spent the 2014-15 season working as the strength and conditioning coach for the Canadian national under-18 team, and worked at Hockey Canada's annual May Strength and Conditioning Camp from 2013-15.
"I am very honoured and excited to join the women's coaching staff at Western University on a full-time basis," said Paton. "I feel extremely fortunate to have the opportunity to grow as a coach within a program that has continued to improve and strive for excellence both on the ice and in the classroom. I look forward to the journey ahead, supporting an environment that provides our student-athletes the opportunity for development, through hard work and commitment."
The head coach of the London Devilettes junior team from 2013-15, Paton is currently director of female player development at Total Package Hockey. Prior to serving as a coach, Paton enjoyed a stellar playing career at both the university and professional levels. A native of Woodstock, Ont., Paton played for the Woodstock Jr. Navy Vets and London Devilettes before heading south to play for the NCAA's University of New Hampshire Wildcats from 2006-10. Over her four-year career in New Hampshire Paton racked up 162 points (62 goals and 100 assists) in 141 games, good for 11th on the team's all-time scoring list. In 2010 Paton was one of three finalists for the Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award presented to the top Division I player in the nation, along with being named the New England player of the year, Hockey East co-player of the year, a Hockey East first team all-star, and a first team all-American. Following her university career Paton headed to Europe to play for the ZSC Lions in Switzerland, helping the team to the Regio League A Frauen Swiss Ice Hockey League title in 2010-11.
Paton holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of New Hampshire and a Masters of Science from Mercyhurst University where she also served as a volunteer assistant coach for the women's hockey team in 2011-12.
Source: Western Mustangs