CK Hockey Coach Reaches 500th Win During Final Season
Coach Andy Weidenbach is ending his nearly three-decade career at Cranbrook the same way he began it: with strength and success.
After twenty-six years as Cranbrook’s Head Hockey Coach, Weidenbach is preparing to conclude his incredible career and retire at the end of this season. Not surprisingly, he’s hit several milestones along the way—most recently his 500th win while serving as head coach for the boys varsity hockey team. The Cranes beat the Chieftains of Brother Rice High School (4-1) on January 26th, bringing their record up to 12-6-0 overall.
“It was a great win for the team against a very good Brother Rice squad,” Weidenbach stated afterwards. “As for the 500th win for me at Cranbrook, I am proud for all the players through the years that helped the team achieve that with me as coach.”
There have been nearly as many awards as there have been players in Weidenbach’s career. Between 1996 and 2015, his coaching has led to CK Hockey’s ten state titles and two runners-up, twenty regional titles, and four league championships. These four latter championships were part of competitions within the Michigan Interscholastic Hockey League (MIHL), one of the most challenging leagues in the state.
In addition to his teams’ successes as a whole, Weidenbach has earned awards for his coaching abilities. He was placed in the National High School Athletics Coaches Association’s Hall of Fame in 2007, as well as the Michigan High School Hockey Coaches Association Hall of Fame in 2009. He has also been named Coach of the Year eight times by the Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA).
As incredible as these accolades have been, Weidenbach is most gratified by his time working with the student athletes. “I have a special fondness for every team I've ever coached. It’s been very rewarding,” he says. “Again, winning a state championship is great, but the influence you have on young people is far more rewarding."