After four years on the ice with the Mercyhurst women’s hockey team and four behind the bench, assistant coach Kelley Steadman is leaving the Lakers.
Steadman oversaw the defense this past season, and the Lakers allowed just 2.06 goals per game while holding opponents to just 27.5 shots a game. Mercyhurst also posted three shutouts thanks to the solid defense corps. In her four seasons behind the bench, the Lakers won the CHA championship twice with the first one coming in 2018 and the second in the 2020 season.
Mercyhurst also made the NCAA tournament in 2018 and were set to make another appearance in 2020 before the COVID-19 pandemic canceled the tournament.
“Kelley was a terrific student-athlete for us at Mercyhurst and fantastic hockey coach for our program,” said Lakers coach Michael Sisto in a news release. “Over the years, she has contributed greatly to our program, on and off the ice. Kelley has been part of numerous championship teams and NCAA appearances in her time at Mercyhurst. She is an amazing ambassador for our university and hockey program. Kelley has a long list of accomplishments, and we are very proud of her and wish her all the best in whatever she does down the road. She is an outstanding person and a great role model for our players. We want to thank her for all her dedication and hard work. We were proud to have her be part of our program.”
Steadman was very grateful for her time at Mercyhurst.
“As I look back on my time here at Mercyhurst, as a player, and as a coach, it’s hard to put into words how much this program and this university means to me,” she said. “I was 15 the first time I stepped on campus and little did I know how much Mercyhurst and the women’s hockey program would shape my life. On the ice, I have been able to experience numerous CHA championships, NCAA tournaments, Frozen Fours, and major program milestones like Coach Sisti’s 500th win. I have been fortunate to work with an amazing staff and with so many dedicated student athletes over my four years, who made coming to the rink enjoyable. I will miss so many things about this place and this program, but I am excited to start this next chapter of my life.
“Mercyhurst will always be the place I shared thousands of memories with teammates, friends, and players, the place where I won some of my most memorable games as a player and a coach, and most importantly, the place where I met my wife. There is nowhere else I would have rather been these last four years. I want to thank athletic director Brad Davis and the entire athletic department for their support of the women’s hockey program and for giving our student-athletes the platform to succeed on and off the ice. Thank you to every player that has been in our program these last four years for the memories they have given me. Thank you to my fellow assistant coach Beth for all of her hard work and for making the rink a fun place to be. Lastly, thank you to Coach Sisti, for taking a chance on the 15-year-old kid from upstate New York (Plattsburgh) all those years ago, for allowing me to come back to my second home, for his lifelong dedication to this school and program, and for the countless things I have learned from him.”
After playing 140 games for Mercyhurst and scoring 78 goals and 54 assists from the blue line, Steadman went on to play four seasons of professional hockey and five years of playing for the United States National Women’s Team.