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Anchorage Wolverines head coach Mike Aikens talks about his 'high character guys' before Robertson Cup play

The Rochester, Minn., native discusses his path from John Marshall High School to the USHL, college hockey and ultimately into coaching. The Wolverines will face the St. Cloud Norseman in a best-of-three series for a spot in the NAHL national championship.

Anchorage Wolverines players on the bench circled on around head coach Mike Aikens
Anchorage Wolverines head coach Mike Aikens speaks with his players on the bench during the team's 4-3 double-overtime win over the Minnesota Wilderness Sunday, May 8, 2022, at Ben Boeke Ice Arena in Anchorage, Alaska.
Kari Bustamante / Anchorage Wolverines

BLAINE, Minn. — With the NAHL's Robertson Cup Championship set to begin on Friday, The Rink Live's Jess Myers and Kirsten Krull sat down with Mike Aikens, head coach of the Anchorage Wolverines, to discuss his hockey path from Rochester John Marshall to the USHL, the University of Denver and into coaching. Aikens discusses what it's been like to experience Anchorage's inaugural season from behind the bench and how the city has welcomed the franchise with fandom and sponsorship.

Rochester native Mike Aikens has guided the Anchorage Wolverines to the North American Hockey League's Robertson Cup, the league's final four tournament, in the franchise's first year of existence. He's done it with some names familiar to southeastern Minnesota hockey fans: Albert Lea's Campbell Cichosz, a Minnesota State commit, and former Rochester Grizzlies Collin Pederson (an Owatonna native) and Shane Soderwall.
The New Mexico Ice Wolves, Anchorage Wolverines, New Jersey Titans and St. Cloud Norsemen will all face off at Fogerty Arena in an effort to earn the prestigious Robertson Cup.
Mike Aikens helped build his hometown Rochester Grizzlies into a national championship contender in just three seasons. Now he'll try to do the same thing in the North American Hockey League, as head coach of the expansion Anchorage Wolverines.

The Wolverines will take on the St. Cloud Norseman in a best-of-three series beginning Friday, May 20, at Fogerty Arena in Blaine for a spot in the NAHL national championship game.

Jess Myers covers college hockey, as well as outdoors, general sports and travel, for The Rink Live and the Forum Communications family of publications. He came to FCC in 2018 after three decades of covering sports as a freelancer for a variety of publications, while working full time in politics and media relations. A native of Warroad, Minn. (the real Hockeytown USA), Myers has a degree in journalism/communications from the University of Minnesota Duluth. He lives in the Twin Cities. Contact Jess via email at jrmyers@forumcomm.com, or find him on Twitter via @JessRMyers. English speaker.
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