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Caruana steps aside as women's hockey head coach

The Ridgebacks women's hockey program will have a new head coach for the 2024-25 season as long-time head coach Justin Caruana leaves to pursue other professional opportunities.

OSHAWA, Ont. – The Ridgebacks women's hockey program will have a new head coach for the 2024-25 season as long-time head coach Justin Caruana leaves to pursue other professional opportunities.

Caruana joined the Ridgebacks in 2012-13 as an assistant coach for the men's hockey team and briefly took the helm as interim head coach during the second half of the 2013-14 season before being officially brought on as head coach of the women's hockey team for the 2015-16 season.

Throughout his eight years as women's hockey head coach, Caruana recruited and helped develop several stand-out performers that received national recognition. He was a determined coach who strived to create a culture within women's hockey that improved the student-athlete experience. 

"Justin has been an invaluable part of the campus community for the past eight years. We thank him for his commitment to the program and wish him the best in the future," said Director of Athletics and Recreation, Scott Barker.

Assistant coach Kassidy Nauboris will step into the interim head coach role, making her the first Ontario Tech graduate to be head coach of a Ridgebacks program. Nauboris was a stand-out student-athlete during her five-year career at Ontario Tech, setting numerous program highs and being the first Ridgeback to represent Canada internationally. 

"It's a real sign of growth for the university to have one of it's notable alumni take the reigns as head coach of a team," said Barker. "We're very excited for Kassidy to get this opportunity."