May 3, 2017

ON TOP OF THE WORLD

Of the 13 head coaches to guide a team to a CCAA national hockey championship, only two have also coached a team to a world championship. Twenty five years ago, the two faced one another for the final time in the post season at the CCAA Challenge Cup in Edmonton. Both are currently eligible for the CCAA Hall of Fame.

For Perry Pearn, it was his final appearance at a national championship. The Stettler, Alberta native coached the NAIT Ooks to seven conference championships in 14 seasons between 1978 and 1993. With Pearn behind the bench, the Ooks collected seven medals in eight appearances at nationals including six gold. In 1993, Pearn was head coach of Canada's National Junior Team the when they won gold at the IIHF World Junior Ice Hockey Championships in Gavle, Sweden.

For Ken Babey, it was his first appearance at a national championship. The Saskatoon, Saskatchewan native coached the SAIT Trojans to nine conference championships in 27 seasons between 1987 and 2014. With Babey behind the bench, the Trojans collected three medals in three appearances at nationals including one gold. Last month, Babey was head coach of Canada's National Sledge Team when they won gold at the IPC World Para Hockey Championships in Gangneung, South Korea.

After the Ooks won the best of five conference final in the fifth and deciding game, the Trojans and the Ooks played twice at the 1992 CCAA Challenge Cup in Edmonton. In the round robin, NAIT outscored SAIT 8-3. In the winner take all final, the Ooks blanked the Trojans 5-0.


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