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Bob Deraney named head coach of Kunlun Red Stars

Former head coach of Providence College will succeed Digit Murphy

Kunlun Red Star starting line up during a CWHL game in Winthrop, MA on March 11, 2018. (Photo by Michelle Jay)
Michelle Jay

The Kunlun Red Stars of the CWHL have a new coach in Bob Deraney. The Massachusetts native has nearly 30 years of coaching experience, ranging from NCAA (men’s and women’s) to Team USA’s U-18 and U-22 teams. He has been in China since earlier this month, according to the league’s press release.

From the press release:

“Deraney is a very professional and outstanding coach with a big picture plan,” said Monna Ao, the Chairman of HC Shenzhen Kunlun Red Star. “He quickly emerged as the top candidate. He has long and deep experiences in coaching, recruiting and player development at both the collegiate and national level. More importantly, he understands what the team really needs. I am confident that Deraney is a coach who will help develop Chinese players and scout more talent. I have full faith in Deraney that he will drive our team to a higher level of excellence.”

Up until recently Deraney was the longtime head coach of Providence College. But on May 4, the college announced Deraney would no longer be a head coach with the team, after 19 seasons. The Friars were 319-287-73 under him. No reason was given for his departure.

Deraney takes over from Digit Murphy after she parted ways with the organization in May. KRS fell to the Markham Thunder in the Clarkson Cup final last season after finishing second in the regular season standings with a record of 21-6-0-1.

The KRS U-18 team was based at Providence College last season, giving Deraney exposure to the organization and vice versa. The junior team played an independent schedule against New England prep schools.

Last season Kunlun’s roster featured Kelli Stack, Alex Carpenter, Shiann Darkangelo, Stephanie Anderson, and Zoe Hickel — all of whom have experience playing for the U.S. women’s national team. Deraney coached Carpenter, Anderson, and Hickel back in 2015 when he was an assistant coach for Team USA at the Women’s World Championship.