McCloskey, honored as the Hockey East Coach of the Year for the second consecutive year and third time in the league's four-year existence, guided UNH to a third consecutive Hockey East regular-season title and first league tournament championship in 2006. He was named USCHO Coach of the Year earlier this week.
McCloskey has compiled a 104-26-13 overall record, including 62-7-7 in Hockey East, with 20+ wins in each of his four years as UNH head coach. In his first season at the Wildcats' helm (2003), McCloskey led the team to a 27-7-2 record, which is now the third-best single-season mark behind this year's 33 and the 1998 mark of 31. McCloskey finished as runner-up in the 2003 AHCA Coach of the Year voting.
The other five finalists are: Jim Fetter (Wayne State), Paul Flanagan (St. Lawrence), Laura Halldorson (Minnesota), Mark Johnson (Wisconsin) and Jeff Kampersal (Princeton).
The Wildcats have won a school single-season record 33 games in 2006 and are undefeated in 29 games (28-0-1) with a 17 game winning streak, both of which are NCAA single-season records.
UNH (33-2-1) is the top seed in the 2006 NCAA Women's Ice Hockey Championship and advanced out of the regional round with a 3-1 victory vs. Harvard on March 17 to play the University of Minnesota in Friday's late semifinal game (8 p.m. Eastern) at Minnesota's Mariucci Arena. The national championship game is March 26 at 4 p.m. (Eastern).