ECHL Breaking News: Three Iowa Heartlanders Arrested

Iowa Heartlanders/ECHL

The Iowa Heartlanders have been having another tough year on the ice, and now their off-ice issues aren’t looking any better. According to the Gazette, Three of their players, including their captain, were arrested on Sunday Night on Alcohol-related charges, including interference with official acts; Liam Coughlin was charged with public intoxication and criminal trespass along with the interference with official acts charge. Nick Campoli was also charged with criminal trespass and interference with official acts; he was the only one out of the three not charged with public intoxication. Coughlin is in his fourth season in the ECHL and first with the Heartlanders, as he has six goals and seven assists for 13 points in 45 games this season. Campoli is in his second year in the league, both of which have come with the Heartlanders; he has nine goals and four assists for 13 points in 30 games this season; he’s been out since January 27th with an injury but would finish that game with three goals and an assist vs. Indy Fuel.

Kevin McKernan, the team’s captain, would try to intervene while one of his players was being arrested after being told by officers to stand back, but instead, he would grab an officer’s vest and push him backward. He would resist arrest while trying to be handcuffed while also obstructing the officer’s instructions; he would be charged with assault on police/fire/EMT personnel along with public intoxication and interference with official acts, as previously mentioned. McKernan, who is in his seventh year in the league and sixth different team, has three goals and 11 assists for 14 points in 59 games this season. He could face up to 14 months for the three charges against him.

Unsurprisingly, all three players didn’t play in Wednesday’s game against the Kalamazoo Wings. In a statement to the Gazette, the Hearlanders said, “We are aware of the allegations; the players are going through the judicial process, and until that plays out, we have no further comment.” The Hearlanders will finish off their 2023-24 season at home this weekend against the Kalamazoo Wings on Friday and the Kansas City Mavericks on Saturday.

With just three games left in the season, including the Fan Appreciation Night, none of these players should be allowed to hit the ice again for the Heartlanders. One of the most concerning facts is that McKernan is the captain, who should be the example of the team’s culture. The Heartlanders are under new ownership this season after the sale from Deacon Sports & Entertainment, but they are still struggling to get fans in the building, which puts a bad look on them. Heartlanders Hockey LLC has a lot of work to do to fix the image surrounding this current iteration of the Hearlanders.

Armand Klisivitch

Inside The Rink ECHL Manager | Senior Editor Credentialed Reporter for the Adirondack Thunder & Worcester Railers.

2 thoughts on “ECHL Breaking News: Three Iowa Heartlanders Arrested

  1. “One of the most concerning facts is that McKernan is the captain’ ….
    actually this shouldn’t be concerning at all. As a Captain, he had his teammates backs, good on him. This “report” is devoid of context of actual events leading up to the confrontation. Was in the area this last weekend & can confirm witmessing not alot going on = overzealous police with lotsa time on their hands. Maybe I missed the lead in that this was an Op Ed piece 🤔

    1. It is fine to have your teammates backs, however, he crossed the line when he essentially assaulted a police officer after being told to stand back. That is NOT a good example of leadership. That aside, I do agree that the author of the article should have articulated if it was an op-Ed piece or he should’ve kept his opinion out of it.

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