Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Merrimack College Names Former Vipers Forward Ciocco New Assistant Coach:

Merrimack College has named former Vernon Vipers forward Josh Ciocco new assistant coach.

Ciocco was an assistant coach for two seasons at Brown University (2016-2018), Ciocco spent the previous three seasons as Assistant Coach with the Alaska Anchorage Seawolves. Prior to joining the Seawolves Ciocco was an Assistant Coach with the Milton Academy varsity hockey team and prime contributor to the U.S. Hockey Report.

Ciocco suffered and unusual injury post workout in late August 2017. Ciocco became aware that he could not feel or move his leg and went immediately to the hospital.  Doctors diagnosed Josh with something called compartmental syndrome. He had damaged a muscle in his leg so severely portions of the muscle had died and the blood flow to his entire leg had been compromised. He also had a lot of toxins in his blood stream because of the necrosed tissue. Unfortunatley, Josh's kidneys have been unable to filter the toxins and he has had at least two round sof dialysis as of Saturday. Josh has also had two surgery's to deal with the removal of dead muscle tissue. He is not comfortable and is still unable to use his leg as of this post. 

For more on the story, Here was a gofundme page for Josh to help cover his medical expenses,


Ciocco played parts of two years in Vernon from (2001-2002). The Vipers traded Mark Nelson & Tyler Scofield January 10th 2001 to Prince George for Josh Ciocco, Rod Pelley & Dan Rossi. On November 22nd 2002 the Vipers traded Ciocco to Cowichan Valley for Bryan McGregor. In 39 games with the Vipers Ciocco collected (21-goals-24-assists-45-points).

Josh Ciocco's Player-Coaches Profile:


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This was posted on the USCHO website:

Borek completes Merrimack staff with Carr, Ciocco, Tortorella, McNiff

By USCHO Staff -

May 23, 2018

Merrimack coach Scott Borek announced Wednesday the completion of the program’s 2018-19 coaching staff.

Joining Borek will be a familiar face in Curtis Carr, who has been a part of the program since 2011-12 – including the last four as associate head coach – as well as new additions Josh Ciocco, Jim Tortorella and Jim NcNiff.

Carr will enter his eighth season at Merrimack in 2018-19.

“I’m very excited that Curtis will be remaining with the program,” Borek said in a statement. “His loyalty to Merrimack College Hockey and his exceptional ability to communicate that loyalty will be integral to the program moving forward.”

Ciocco, who will serve as an assistant coach on the Merrimack staff, spent the previous two seasons as an assistant coach at Brown.

“I have known Josh for over a decade,” said Borek. “His leadership as a student-athlete, along with his attention to detail, make him a perfect fit for Merrimack. I am excited to see his work come to fruition both on the road and behind our bench in the years ahead.”

Tortorella, the director of men’s ice hockey, arrives in North Andover after enjoying success last winter as the head coach at nearby St. Anselm, where he led the Hawks to their 10th Northeast-10 conference title in his first season behind the bench. He brings over two decades of experience at the collegiate level to North Andover, including prior stints at Providence and New Hampshire. He also spent 16 seasons at Colby.

“We are extremely fortunate to have added Jim [Tortorella] to our staff,” said Borek. “His extensive experience will aid our program, players and staff in multiple areas of teaching, involvement and development. His experience as a head coach will be invaluable to the program moving forward.”

McNiff, a 1998 Merrimack alumnus and former student-athlete on the hockey team, will serve as the volunteer goaltending coach for the program. He returns to campus after a one-year run in a similar role at Bentley.

“Jim has a tremendous amount of success on his resume of working with goalies,” Borek said. “He was instrumental in the development of [former Hockey East Honorable Mention All-Star] Nick Ellis when we worked together at Providence one year. He is a great communicator, and I know he will bring our goalies to a new level.”

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