Our plans continue on track with what we announced in May at the AGM, and the program that was detailed for you in a previous League message which I’ll reiterate here:
“Our Association remains committed to a ‘Learn to Play Hockey’ philosophy, as opposed to ‘Learn to Skate’ – as such all registrants are required to possess some basic skating skills/ability. In support of this key philosophy the league will be structured around mandatory House League participation with try-out based Select programs for the more advanced player.
The goal of our House League Program is recreational. While playing our game involves competition, being competitive is not the goal of the program. Being recreational means everyone participates, everyone learns and everyone has fun.”
Coaching Staff for this year in the Fall session are shown at the end of this note. You will see some new names on the list and of course some old ones. We are still in need of volunteers so if you’re still interested please let us know.
The House League Draft – The draft process is fairly simple with our goal to assign players to teams which are as balanced in ability as we can make them. To do this we start by grading all players by relative ability which will divide them into 3 “pools”. Through a process of blind selection the players are assigned teams so there is a similar amount of players from each pool on each team.
Changes after the Draft – If the Coaching Staff feel that changes are needed, they will bring the issue to the attention of the League Convener Dave Matts. Dave will produce a report recommending action for the Executive Committee's consideration. The Executive Committee will vote on Dave’s recommendations. The reports, the votes and all the internal action can be found on the website under the Executive Committee Meeting Minutes.
Players Playing out of their age Group – there are times when coaches recognize that players are in a group based on age that does not suit their individual development requirements in House League. As a player, playing outside your ability is sometimes not very enjoyable and it’s a challenge not only for the player but also his teammates. If a coach recognizes this issue, the process that will be followed is very much as described above (Changes after the Draft). An additional step is that we expect the coach to bring the issue to the attention of the parents and get concurrence with any move before bringing the issue to the attention of the Convener. For this weekend's September 9 House League kick-off, unless formally notified by the League Convener, all participants should attend their age appropriate group, as follows:
Birth Years House League Group
1999 & Prior Group 1
2000 & 2001 Group 2
2002 & Later Group 3
Please see the league schedule at the STMHA website for confirmation of Sunday's time/location for each House League group.
Please remember the equipment requirements (mandatory neck guards and mouth guards). I noticed a few new braces out on the ice during the Open Skates so make sure you have mouth guards that are properly fitted.
Once again thank you for kind support of this Committee. We all look forward to next weekend and seeing all the players on the ice.