VIENNA – The Austrian Ice Hockey Association had to replace its U18 national team head coach. The Finn Sakari Pietilä urgently needed a surgery. In his place Herbert Hohenberger, who was planned as the assistant coach, was named head coach.
Austria will play in the 2013 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 World Championship Division I Group B in Tychy, Poland, that starts on Sunday. The team lost two exhibition games in Villach against Norway (7-0) and Italy (5-2).
The association informed that after the surgery Pietilä won’t be in a position to fully perform his coaching duties in the upcoming tournament and it remains open whether he can be used in another position at the tournament.
Günther Ropatsch was named new assistant coach.