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Vernon Vipers head coach/ GM suddenly resigns

VERNON, B.C. – An Okanagan BCHL team has lost its leader after a sudden resignation.

Jason Williamson, head coach and general manager of the Vernon Vipers, has resigned both positions due to personal reasons.

“I was a little surprised,” says Vipers team owner Duncan Wray. “He had done a great job on recruiting this team this year and we’ve been happy with him the way things have been going, but i think he made a decision that for his best interest in his life at this time, it was time to go.”

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Wray would not comment on the nature of the personal reasons of Williamson’s immediate departure from the team, but a release from the team office states that he will be missed.

“Jason has decided he needs some time away from the game to get his affairs in order and I respect that,” says Wray in the release.

Assistant coach Kevin Krause has been named Vipers interim coach as the team looks for Williamson’s replacement. Eric Godard will increase his role as an assistant coach.

Williamson was set to enter his fourth year leading the team. Last season, he guided the team to a conference title and a semi final appearance at the RBC Cup.

The 33-year-old played for the Vipers three seasons starting in 1999. After playing in the College Hockey America – Div 1 league for Niagara University and for the Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs with the Central Hockey League for a few years, he was hired as Vipers Assistant Coach in 2007 and was elevated to Head Coach in 2011.

The Vipers will play a final pair of exhibition games this weekend with Prince George visiting Friday (7pm) and the return match-up in Prince George on Saturday. The regular season home opener for Vernon is September 27th vs West Kelowna.

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