Hey Coaches, hockey players, and fans! Its been a while since the last puck of the 2010-2011 season was dropped. On the other hand, it won’t be long until the 2011-2012 season gets underway. Still, there was a lot of hockey being played since February, and still a bit more (Elite I & Elite II) before we officially start. That almost always leads to improved players, and improved play. As coaches, we all hope that our players are motivated to take advantage of what is available in the “off season” as they seek to become better.
Each year from one season to the next, there are often many changes, and this year is no exception. We lost some coaches this year, who I hope are only taking a breather from such a demanding schedule, before they get back in. Several have been heavily involved in our coaches association, and my hope is they will still be available to help guide our organization.
John Wareham, Ted Cheesebrough, and Matt Menne come to mind. They contributed greatly behind the scene, to our coaches association, and I hope they are only re-charging their batteries and will return to the game at some point. Tim Morris, our Executive Secretary, is another one! Tim and I have met and talked over the summer, and I know he remains optimistic about returning to the coaching ranks at some point in time. He has stated that he intends to continue his focus on his association duties, and we both seek to improve what the association can do for our statewide girl’s program
Other great contributors to girl’s hockey have also stepped aside, but I don’t know if or when they will return. Such names as Mitch Loch, Sarma Ozman, Jeff Neidt, Joel Zejdnik, , and Steve Williams come to mind. There are others to be sure, and I wish I could say that they will be returning at some point. I just don’t know! Sadly, we also lost Chris Johnson, Robinsdale Cooper, who died of cancer back in April.
On a brighter note, change does mean new faces, new ideas, and new progress. It’s great to see names like John Pohl, Craig Norwich, Gretchen Norby, and Natalie Darwitz in the coaching ranks! There are a number of new faces behind the bench this coming season, and our programs, and our sport will greatly benefit.
As I mentioned, the Elite I and Elite II fall leagues will start soon. Elite II is already posted on our MGHCA Web Site. We will try to get the schedule and data for Elite I on line as well.
We have also been working on our Fall Clinic
, and our schedule is almost complete. The clinic will take place at the Swan Center in Blaine
on Friday October 14, 2011
, and our annual coaches meeting will be on Saturday morning October 15, 2011,
also at the Swan Center. At this writing we have secured some notable college coaches as clinicians for this year’s sessions. They include Joe Cranston, River Falls, Mike Cowan, Wisconsin- Marian, Jackie McMillian, St Scholastica
, and our resident goalie expert, Steve Guider
. We will add one additional speaker and hope to complete our clinic schedule and post it on our web site as soon as possible. Our always popular “coaches favorite drill sharing sessions”
are also scheduled.
Overtime Notes...At our meeting we will have an update on our Advisory Board recommendations to the MSHSL. If you remember, there was a recommended change to the scrimmage guidelines, and a proposal for back to back championship games at the State Tournament, with the hope of filling the ‘bottom bowl’ at the X! This would also present a great TV package. In my contact with the MSHSL’s Craig Perry, he said a decision would be forth coming sometime in September.
We will have an update on our proposed MGHCA Hall of Fame. It has been a bit of a struggle to cover all bases when it comes to the criteria for Hall of Fame selection, but thanks to Jaime Grossman, Tim Morris, and others, we are close to accepting nominations for the “Hall”!
See you at the clinic!!!