South Carolina Stingrays head coach Spencer Carbery signed a two-year contract extension on Thursday.
Carbery, 30, is one of the youngest head coaches in all of professional sports. Carbery led the Stingrays to a 37-28-7 mark and a berth in the ECHL’s Kelly Cup playoffs in his rookie season behind the bench.
The highlight of the season came in the opening round of the Kelly Cup playoffs when the seventh-seeded Stingrays beat No. 2 seed Gwinnett, 3-1, in the best-of-five series. The series was highlighted by a 4-3 quadruple over victory, the second longest game in ECHL history.
“I’ve learned so much in my first season,” Carbery said. “It wasn’t so much x’s and o’s. It was how to handle different personalities and different situations on and off the ice. It’s a huge honor to be the Stingrays head coach and it’s not a job I take for granted.
The Victoria, British Columbia native was named the sixth head coach in Stingrays history on July 26, 2011 after serving as the team’s assistant coach for one season under current Abbotsford Heat assistant coach Cail MacLean.
Carbery joined the organization as a player during the 2008-09 campaign helping the club capture its third Kelly Cup championship. He recorded 22 goals and 26 assists for 48 points in 94 games with the Stingrays and was named the inaugural recipient of the Jerry Zucker Community Service Award in 2009.
“Spencer did a terrific job last year,” said Stingrays president Rob Concannon. “I think he handled everything very well and I am looking forward to next year with him.”
Carbery said the Stingrays are working on extending their affiliation with the National Hockey League’s Washington Capitals. The Stingrays began their affiliation with the Capitals in 2004. Carbery said he has no plans to add another affiliation. The Capitals starting goalie during the Stanley Cup playoffs, Braden Holtby, played for the Stingrays during the 2009-10 season.
“It’s been one of the longest running affiliations in the ECHL,” Carbery said. “We’re hoping to get something done sooner rather than later.”