Madison Capitols

junior ice hockey team

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Madison Capitols
Madison Capitols logo.svg
CityMadison, Wisconsin
LeagueUnited States Hockey League
Home arenaBob Suter's Capitol Ice Arena
ColorsBlue, sky blue, gray, red, and white
Owner(s)Ryan Suter
General managerTom Upton[1]
Head coachTom Upton
Franchise history
2014–presentMadison Capitols

The Madison Capitols are a Tier I junior ice hockey team that plays in the Eastern Conference of the United States Hockey League. Founded in 2014, the team plays its home games at Bob Suter's Capitol Ice Arena in Middleton, Wisconsin.[2] The team is on hiatus for the 2020–21 season.


Early history (1984–1991)

The Madison Capitols began as a team in 1984, competing in the USHL, and played for 11 consecutive seasons.[3] During this period, the Capitols played home games at the Hartmeyer Ice Arena, posting a 207–278–16 record, playing a total of 530 games.[4]

The team was coached by Bob Suter from 1984 to 1986, posting a 35–48–3–10 record.[5] Following what was a mild start to the franchise, Scott Owens took over coaching duties in 1986 and started a winning franchise, posting a 136–85–9–10 record through 1991.[6] Owens would then move on to coach the Des Moines Buccaneers and Colorado College, ending the first era of the Madison Capitols.

Wisconsin Capitols (1991–1995)

With the departure of Owens, the Madison Capitols re-branded themselves as the Wisconsin Capitols in 1991. Steve Huglen, a University of Illinois Defensemen, was hired as head coach for the 1991–1992 campaign and the Capitols intended to continue their winning record; however, under Huglen the team posted an 11–37–0 season.

The 1992–93 campaign saw the departure of Huglen, and the addition of Mike Dibble as head coach. After the team posted a 2–21–2 record Dibble was replaced by Rob Andriga mid-season, who would coach the Capitols to a 4–19–1 record, finishing at 6–39–2–1 season record.[7][8][9]

In the 1993–94 season, Andringa was still coaching the Wisconsin Capitols, along with the additions of Don Granato, and Brian Duffy.[10][11] The Capitols would post a 9–37–1–3 record this season, second to their worst.[4] The era of the Wisconsin Capitols and, for the time being, USHL hockey in Madison was close to an end.

The final season of the Capitols in Madison in 1994–95, saw the return of Duffy, who would post a 3–8–0[11] record as head coach. The replacement coach, Len Semplice would finish the season with a 7–29–1 record, totaling a team season record of 10–37–1.[12]

Madison Capitols (2014–present)

On November 26, 2013, the management of Madtown Hockey, LLC announced that the Madison Capitols would be returning to Madison in the 2014–15 season. Ryan Suter, defenseman for the Minnesota Wild and Tom Sagissor, a former Wisconsin Badger, would join the ownership group.[3] It was also announced that the Madison Capitols would play at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison, Wisconsin.

On May 22, 2014, Luke Strand was formally introduced as the Madison Capitols head coach and general manager. He was joined on the bench by fellow Eau Claire native Keith Paulsen and longtime NHL veteran and Stanley Cup Champion Tony Hrkac.

Following Bob Suter's death in September 2014, the Capitols honored the lifelong Madison native and gold medalist with stickers on team helmets, a banner bearing his jersey number 20 inside the Coliseum, and the ice rink named in his honor (Bob Suter Memorial Rink).

The Capitols began their first season back in the USHL on September 27, 2014, with a 4–3 loss at Muskegon. Luke McElhenie, a native of Sauk City, WI, scored the first goal in the new era of the Capitols. McElhenie previously played for Bob Suter and the Madison Capitols AAA program. Madison picked up its first victory in the USHL on October 24, defeating the Sioux Falls Stampede 3–1.

Following the 2014–15 season, Luke Strand left the organization to accept an assistant coaching position at the University of Wisconsin-Madison under head coach Mike Eaves.[13]

On June 10, 2015, it was announced that Troy G. Ward had been hired as the new head coach and general manager.[14][15] After one season, Troy Ward resigned his positions with the organization[16] and was replaced as head coach and general manager by Garrett Suter.[17]

On July 28, 2017, the Capitols announced that Andrew Joudrey was named the team's new president.[18] That same day, the team announced plans to relocate from the Alliant Energy Center to Hartmeyer Ice Arena for the 2017–18 season. Reasons cited for the move included a decrease in available dates for hockey at the Alliant Energy Center and a desire on the Capitols' part for better sightlines and fan experience.[19] Negotiations between the Capitols and Hartmeyer management over needed facility upgrades would come to an impasse, and on September 11, the Capitols announced they would instead play the 2017–18 season at Bob Suter's Capitol Ice Arena, a two-rink facility in suburban Middleton owned by Ryan Suter and named in father Bob Suter's memory. The Capitol Ice Arena, already a practice site for the Capitols, had a capacity of 1,300 fans for hockey, and became the smallest arena in the USHL.[2] In the 2018 off-season, the Capitols renovated the rink to increase the capacity and add more suites.[20] Head coach and general manager Garrett Suter stepped down after the 2019–20 season.[21]

Due to the on-going restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic, Capitols went on hiatus for the 2020–21 season.[22]

Season-by-season record

Season GP W L OTL Pts GF GA PIM Finish Playoffs
2014–15 60 24 25 11 59 172 212 1193 7th of 9, Eastern
12th of 17, USHL
Did not qualify
2015–16 60 25 27 8 58 169 198 892 7th of 9, Eastern
13th of 17, USHL
Did not qualify
2016–17 60 23 32 5 51 135 192 851 7th of 9, Eastern
12th of 17, USHL
Did not qualify
2017–18 60 23 33 4 50 183 224 755 8th of 9, Eastern
15th of 17, USHL
Did not qualify
2018–19 62 15 38 9 39 145 249 822 9th of 9, Eastern
16th of 17, USHL
Did not qualify
2019–20 50 12 34 4 28 122 219 889 Season cancelled due to COVID-19 pandemic


Notable alumni

NHL draft picks

Year drafted Player Drafted team Pick
1985 Tim Sweeney Calgary Flames 6th round, 122nd overall[24]
1987 Mark Osiecki Calgary Flames 9th round, 187th overall
Roger Rougelot Winnipeg Jets 11th round, 226th overall
Dan Brettschneider Washington Capitals 12th round, 240th overall[24]
1988 Scott Billey Philadelphia Flyers 11th round, 224th overall[25]
Dan Ruoho Buffalo Sabres 8th round, 160th overall
1989 Derek Plante Buffalo Sabres 8th round, 161st overall
Joe Frederick Detroit Red Wings 12th round, 242nd overall
1994 Rocky Welsing Anaheim Ducks 7th round, 158th overall
2014 Tyler Nanne New York Rangers 5th round, 142nd overall
2015 Garrett Metcalf Anaheim Ducks 6th round, 179th overall[26]
2017 Cole Hults Los Angeles Kings 5th round, 134th overall
2018 Ryan O'Reilly Detroit Red Wings 4th round, 98th overall[27]

Awards and player recognition

  • Ryan Edquist – 2015–16 USHL All-Rookie Team[28]
  • Michael Mancinelli – 2017–18 USHL All-Rookie Team[29]
  • Mick Messner – 2016 U.S. Junior Select Team[30][31]
  • Ryan O'Reilly – 2017–18 USHL All-Rookie Team, 2018 U.S. Junior Select Team[32]
  • Scott Owens – USHL General Manager of the Year, 1986–87
  • Scott Owens – USHL Coach of the Year, 1987–88[24]

Prospects games participants

  • Ryan Edquist – 2015 CCM/USA Hockey All-American Prospects Game, 2016 USHL/NHL Top Prospects Game[33]
  • Mick Messner – 2016 CCM/USA Hockey All-American Prospects Game,[34] 2017 USHL/NHL Top Prospects Game[35]
  • Ryan O'Reilly – 2017 CCM/USA Hockey All-American Prospects Game,[36] 2018 USHL/NHL Top Prospects Game[37][38]
  • Kamil Sadlocha – 2017 USHL/NHL Top Prospects Game
  • Carson Bantle – 2020 USA Hockey BioSteel All American Game


  1. ^ "Capitols Announce Tom Upton as Head Coach & General Manager". OurSports Central. April 20, 2020.
  2. ^ a b "Capitol's Move to Hartmeyer nixed; Capitol Ice Arena named as new home". Wisconsin State Journal. September 11, 2017.
  3. ^ a b "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-04-09. Retrieved 2014-08-11.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  4. ^ a b "Wisconsin Capitols hockey team statistics and history at".
  5. ^ "Bob Suter hockey statistics and profile at".
  6. ^ "Scott Owens hockey statistics and profile at".
  7. ^ "Mike Dibble hockey statistics and profile at".
  8. ^
  9. ^ "Rob Andringa hockey statistics and profile at".
  10. ^ "Don Granato hockey statistics and profile at".
  11. ^ a b "Brian Duffy hockey statistics and profile at".
  12. ^ "Len Semplice hockey statistics and profile at".
  13. ^ Haase, Nicole (3 June 2015). "UW men's hockey hires Strand as top assistant".
  14. ^ "Madison Capitols Name Troy Ward Head Coach".
  15. ^ "Coaching Staff".
  16. ^ "Caps' Ward Resigns as Head Coach/GM". OurSports Central. April 18, 2016.
  17. ^ "Suter Named Capitols' Head Coach/GM". OurSports Central. May 18, 2016.
  18. ^ Capitols, Madison (2017-07-28). "Capitols Change Venues; Name President". Madison Capitols. Retrieved 2017-07-28.
  19. ^ "Capitols on the move to Hartmeyer Ice Arena," from Wisconsin State Journal, 7/28/2017
  20. ^ "Rink Renovations". Madison Capitols. April 18, 2018.
  21. ^ "Garrett Suter to Step Down from Behind the Bench". OurSports Central. March 30, 2020.
  22. ^ "Cedar Rapids RoughRiders and Madison Capitols Will Not Participate in 2020-21 USHL Season". OurSports Central. September 18, 2020.
  23. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-09-04. Retrieved 2014-09-03.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  24. ^ a b c "Team History".
  25. ^ "Scott Billey hockey statistics and profile at".
  26. ^ "SportsEngine".
  27. ^ "NHL Draft: Detroit Red Wings Select Ryan O'Reilly With 98th Pick In 2018 NHL Draft".
  28. ^ "USHL Announces 2015-2016 All-Rookie Teams".
  29. ^ "USHL 2017-2018 All-Rooke Teams Announced".
  30. ^ USHL, USHL. "2017 NHL Draft Profile: Mick Messner". Retrieved 2 September 2018.
  31. ^ "21 USHL Players Selected to US World Junior A Challenge Squad".
  32. ^ "2018 U.S. Junior Select Team Coaching Staff and Player Roster Unveiled".
  33. ^ "Rosters Announced For 2016 USHL/NHL Top Prospects Game".
  34. ^ "USA Hockey All-American Prospects Game All-Time Roster".
  35. ^ "2017 USHL/NHL Top Prospects Game Rosters".
  36. ^ "USA Hockey All-American Prospects Game History". Retrieved 2 September 2018.
  37. ^ "2018 USHL/NHL Top Prospects Game Rosters Announced".
  38. ^ "USHL/NHL Top Prospects Game Testing Results". Retrieved 2 September 2018.

External links

Original content from Wikipedia, shared with licence Creative Commons By-Sa - Madison Capitols