Brown Bears announce staff for upcoming season

  • By Staff Report
  • Sunday, June 11, 2017 1:03am
  • Sports

After hiring Josh Petrich as head coach last month, the Kenai River Brown Bears announced the filling of a number of staff positions with a press release Saturday night.

Joining Petrich on the bench will be Nick Sova of Cottage Grove, Minnesota. Sova recently graduated from Hamline University, where he played forward. He also played in the North American Hockey League and played junior hockey in Canada.

Jed McGlasson will also be an assistant for the team and continue as director of business operations. McGlasson was a standout player for Kenai Central and the Brown Bears. He went on to play hockey at St. Mary’s University.

Chris Hedlund will be director of hockey operations. Hedlund served as a regional scout for the team last season. Hedlund has coached AAA hockey and scouted for Granite City Lumberjacks, an NA3HL team in St. Cloud, Minnesota, that has won the Silver Cup Championship three times. Having served as a regional sales manager for Versatex Building Products, Hedlund also adds business experience.

Steve Stuber will join the Bears as director of marketing and community liaison. When the Bears declared dormancy for the upcoming season in late February, Stuber stepped forward and spearheaded an effort to raise $300,000. The team was reactivated in mid-April.

Stuber did all that as a passionate fan, but now will be a member of the staff charged with promoting events in the community and game-day efforts.

The new billet coordinator will be April Weber, taking over for longtime coordinator Gwen Johnson. The press release said Johnson helped build the billet program into one of the best in junior hockey, and that Weber has previous experience in this role.

Another member of the community stepping forward in an official capacity is Vince Redford, a longtime hockey coach in the community. Redford will focus on developing Alaska talent.

“With Vince’s dedication, the Bears will once again become Alaska’s team, helping to identify and develop top talent within the state,” said Nate Kiel, general manager of the Brown Bears, in a released statement.

Redford also has been a leading force in the recent creation of the Brown Bear Booster Club.

Lisa Zulkanycz, who also has done a lot of volunteering for the Bears over the years, will serve as administrative manager.

“Lisa has been invaluable to the organization,” Kiel said. “Her knowledge of the program and community is essential as we transition with a new staff.”

Kiel added that he is encouraged by fans and supporters that have stepped up to volunteer for the current season. Those wishing to volunteer can call 907-262-7825 or

More in Sports

Soldotna's Wayne Mellon works to a pin of Kenai Central's Zoticus Active at 189 pounds in a dual meet at Soldotna High School on Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021, in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
SoHi wrestling honors seniors in matchup with Kenai

Thanksgiving weekend gives many the opportunity to see family. The holiday gave… Continue reading

Strausbaugh, Hippchen take Turkey Skate

Soldotna hosted Kenai Central for the Turkey Skate at Tsalteshi Trails on… Continue reading

Kenai Central's Sawyer Vann controls Nikiski's Wyatt Maguire at 125 pounds Tuesday, Nov. 23, 2021, at Nikiski High School in Nikiski, Alaska. Vann notched a 7-6 victory. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
Area wrestlers collect mat time before Thanksgiving break

Area wrestlers got in some mat time Tuesday before the Thanksgiving break.… Continue reading

Assistant coach Taylor Shaw leads the Kenai River Brown Bears during a game Thursday, Nov. 18, 2021, against the Springfield (Illinois) Jr. Blues at the Soldotna Regional Sports Complex in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
Brown Bears start search for new head coach

The Kenai River Brown Bears issued a press release Friday about staff… Continue reading

Kenai River Brown Bears forward Bryce Monrean tries to find a way through the defense of the Springfield (Illinois) Jr. Blues during a first-period power play Friday, Nov. 19, 2021, at the Soldotna Regional Sports Complex. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
Jr. Blues come back to take series from Bears

The Springfield (Illinois) Jr. Blues lost not only a 2020-21 season to… Continue reading

Soldotna junior Liam Babitt holds a grip on South Anchorage’s Britten Hamilton during the 215-pound final of the Lancer Smith Fall Varsity 2021 Invite on Saturday, Nov. 20, 2021 at the Menard Arena in Wasilla, Alaska. (Photo by Jeremiah Bartz/Frontiersman)
Soldotna crowns 4 champions at Lancer Smith

The Soldotna wrestling team finished fourth Friday and Saturday at the Lancer… Continue reading

Hockey roundup: SoHi sweeps in Kodiak; West wins End of Road tourney

The Soldotna hockey team swept Kodiak in the first high school games… Continue reading

A brown bear feeds on a salmon. (Photo by C. Canterbury/USFWS)
Refuge Notebook: Bears, uniquely built to respond to winter

With the new snow and temperatures dipping into the single digits, you… Continue reading

Kenai Central's Caden Warren surveys the ice against West at the End of the Road Tournament at Kevin Bell Arena in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Sarah Knapp/Homer News)
Kenai, Homer hockey lose to open tourney

The Kenai Central and Homer hockey teams both opened the End of… Continue reading

Caden Triggs of the Kenai River Brown Bears celebrates his first-period goal against the Springfield (Illinois) Jr. Blues on Thursday, Nov. 18, 2021, at the Soldotna Regional Sports Complex in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
Brown Bears topple Jr. Blues

By JEFF HELMINIAK Peninsula Clarion The Kenai River Brown Bears received two… Continue reading

Michael proposes to Sarah at the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge on Sunday, Nov. 7, 2021. (Photo by Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Out of the Office: Falling in love one snowflake at a time

Do you want to know what I’ve been looking forward to the… Continue reading