AHAI Newsletter                                                                                           Volume 1 Issue 6 
Website     Inside AHAI     Events     American Developmental Model (ADM)     
OneGoal    Tournaments     Contacts
2013-14 CEP Clinic Schedule
USAH Youth Select 16 Camp Begins
Christian Fischer Signs with USAH National U-17 Team
Dskate: Hockey Program for Youths Living with Diabetes
Wanted: Used Equipment
AHAI Golf Outing
Level 4 CEP Clinic Announced
Tier II: What About My 2nd Choice? What Should I Consider?
Tier II Choice Substitution: Application Information
Midget 3rd Choice Information
4 IL Players Chosen at NHL Entry Draft
Nardella & Wagner Tapped for US Under-18 Select Team
Adult Hockey News

Last year I was coaching Pee Wee and took the Pee Wee Age Specific Module.  I will be coaching at the Pee Wee level again this year.  Do I have to take the Pee Wee Age Specific Module again? 


No, you do not.  Once a coach takes an Age Specific Module he/she never needs to take it again.

Editor's Note:  Readers may email any questions they may have to ASK THE COACH to be answered in future issues.


AHAI has announced the Coaching Education Program Clinics for the 2013-14 season. All coaches are required to be certified at the appropriate level for the upcoming season.


All 2013-14 AHAI CEP Clinics will be open for registration on July 12, 2013 ONLY on the USA Hockey website


Click HERE for full listing of AHAI/USAH CEP Clinics 

Dates & Locations.



What the heck is going on with High School Hockey? District Teams?



Another good question from a concerned parent.  Twenty years ago AHAI created the rules for its combined teams with the anticipation of them growing into "pure high school teams" after a couple of years. Well 25 years later few of those schools ever became pure HS teams.


Two years ago AHAI's High School Committee reviewed the structure of is "Combined Teams". While some were successful, others more resembled Club teams with kids from many different and unrelated schools playing on a "team". That was not HS hockey.


The HS committee rewrote the rules last year for continuously combined HS teams. The 2 basic tenets are "the essence of high school" and the continuing "viability of the team". The essence of HS means they must all be from the same district or community (i.e. all Wheaton schools or all District U-46 schools). No longer would we have Montini from Lombard combined with Andrew of Tinley Park, some 25 miles apart. Also a viable team was to be a team with enough participants so they would be more viable year to year, that you could count on them playing every year; that is not how competitive they might be because team skill fluctuates, but viable in numbers of players available each year.


So the HS committee embarked on "reforming" its combined HS teams into HS clubs that met the above 2 premises, "essence of high school" and "viability". That is what you are seeing today with the District 210 schools of Lincolnway, the Wheaton Schools, the District 204 Warriors (Waubonsie Valley, Metea Valley, and Oswego), AWFM (Addison Trail, Willowbrook, Fenton, Montini - all in proximity), and the Glenbard District 87 (North, South, East, West) club.  These are the types of changes made thus far - with a few of the more difficult ones yet to reconstruct.


Thanks for Asking AHAI!


Mike Mullally

AHAI Director

The USA Hockey Youth Select 16 Camp in Williamsville, NY began on Sunday, July 7 and runs through Saturday, July 13.  AHAI is proud to count 10 Illinois skaters among the ranks. Initially identified through AHAI's Player Development Program, these young men were then chosen by the Central District to move on to USA Hockey's National Player Development Camp.

Dryden McCoy (G)
Downers Grove
Eliot Gerth (G)
Vasili Kolias (D)
Tory Dello (D)
Crystal Lake
Charles Raith (D)
Jason Dhooghe (F)
Kip Hoffman (F)
Tanner Laczynski (F)
Michael Floodstrand (F)
**Christian Fischer (F)
**See article below on
Christian Fischer
Christian Fischer of Wayne, IL has signed with the USA Hockey National Under-17 Team. Fischer averaged over a point per game for the Chicago Mission Midget Minor program in 2012-13. The forward recorded 26 points (12-14) in 25 contests. He is verbally committed to Notre Dame.

The 2013-14 U.S. National Under-17 Team will play in the United States Hockey League, the top junior league in the U.S. It will also compete in three inter-national competitions, including the 2014 World Under-17 Challenge in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia.

A Hockey Program for Youths Living with Diabetes

Dskate Hockey is an educational hockey program for youth hockey players living with Type 1 diabetes. No ordinary hockey camp, Dskate combines the elements of hockey and diabetes, providing on and off-ice educational sessions designed to improve puck-skills, life-skills while showcasing how it's possible to successfully manage your diabetes while having fun. Dskate Hockey is excited to invite you to learn what it means to have fun while playing the sport you love!

Dskate '13
August 6-9, 2013
Boys & Girls Ages 8-16
Milton, Ontario, Canada

Click HERE for more information or contact Steven Hindle at Steven@dskatehockey.ca
The "Hockey Is For Everyone" Program is seeking used equipment for its players. If you have any used equipment you would like to donate so underprivileged kids can also enjoy the opportunity to play our great game, you can drop it off at either the Homewood Flossmoor Ice Arnea or All Seasons Ice Arena. 

Click HERE for list of items needed and rink locations. 

The 17th Annual AHAI Golf Outing is set for Friday, August 16, 2013 at the beautiful Indian Lakes Golf Resort in Bloomingdale, IL. All proceeds for this event go towards assisting the Tomahawks Special Hockey Program, the Hornets Youth Sled Hockey Team, the Hearing Impaired Hockey Team and the AHAI Diversity Hockey Program. Make your plans now to come out and support this wonderful event.



Registration Form 


It's been a very good month for Illinois Hockey! Four young men were chosen during the NHL entry draft on June 30, two of our skaters were rostered to the USA Hockey Under-18 Select Team, ten skaters are currently attending USA Hockey's Youth Select 16 Player Development Camp and one young man has signed with USA Hockey's Under 17 National Team!  Keep reading to find out who these 17 players are.

On July 15 the application process for Tier II 2 Choice Substitutions will begin. You will find helpful articles regarding the 2 Choice Rule, Choice Substitutions and information regarding the Midget Third Choice. Thanks to Ken Goldstein, House Coach for the Skokie Flyers and parent of a child with Type 1 Diabetes (Juvenile Diabetes), we have camp information for other parents of T1 Children.  DSkate Hockey is an educational hockey program for youth hockey players living with Type 1 diabetes.

AHAI is incredibly proud of the accomplishments of our Illinois skaters and the hard work and determination it took to get them where they are today. Help us celebrate that hard work. I invite all Member Associations, Parents and Skaters to share your success stories (big or small) with us - you never know what young hockey player you may inspire to achieve greatness.  

Don't forget to visit and "like" AHAI's Facebook Page for news regarding our Illinois skaters - Tier I to Tier III, High School, Adult, Disabled and everything hockey in between, Weekly Parent and Coach Tips from Responsible Sports, interesting articles from USA Hockey and other trusted sources.  

We want your input!  Let us know how we can make our e-Newsletter better. Email your comments, questions, article suggestions or accomplishments to me at gretchen@ahai2.org.  


Have a great summer!

Gretchen Cockey
Communications Director
(630) 414-1107 

USAH Central District Level 4 CEP Clinic
Renaissance Hotel St. Louis Airport, St. Louis, Missouri

Saturday, August 24 ~ 8am-7pm
Sunday, August 25 - 8am-4pm
Offensive and Defensive Player Development, Special Teams, Ethics, ADM, Teambuilding, Goaltending, Small Games, Bench Management, Practice Efficiency, Off Ice Development

Clinic fee is $215 and includes clinic materials, coaches' gifts, door prizes, lunch on Saturday and breakfast on Sunday.  If you need accomodations, please call the Renaissance Hotel at 314.429.1100 and mention that you are with the USA Hockey Coaching Seminar.  A limited number of rooms are available at a discounted rate of $99.  The hotel offers an airport shuttle.  Click HERE for full Level 4 Clinic Flyer.

Click HERE to register TODAY! 

Tier II:  What About My 2nd Choice?  What Should I Consider?

1. Only Two Total Choices - Make Them with Care: You only get two choices from Mite through Bantam Major. If you have used the1st one by playing Tier II hockey sometime in the past...make that 2nd choice with care...you don't get another one until Midget.

2.  Best Player, Team or Coach This Year; What About Next Year?:  Things change so make that 2nd choice with the proper information.

3.  Coach Changes Organizations:  What if the coach (we love) decides to change organizations after we have made our 2nd choice?  Unfortunately, that will not be grounds for an exception.

4.  I Did Not Make the Team I Wanted/Thought I Should: Your choices have nothing to do with whether or not you make the A or AA team at either Member Association, nor does it matter that the Member Association of either of your choices does not have a team that plays in the highest level of League or even does not belong to a League you wish to play in.  You will NOT get an exception so long as the Member Association fields a team at the age level for which you are playing.

5.  Is There a Restrictive Policy if I Leave?  Find out the philosophy and rules of both your 1st and 2nd choice regarding leaving.

6.  Get Involved and Change What You Do Not Like:  If you do not like the philosophy of your 1st or 2nd choice, get involved and work to change it. Merely changing organizations will not help improve hockey in Illinois.

7.  Organization's Philosophy and History:  Be informed before you decide to use that 2nd choice.  If you are a Mite or Squirt, remember that you will be making this choice for the rest of your playing days in Illinois up to your Bantam Major year; therefore, check out their programs through all age levels as well as the level in which you are interested.  

8.  Rumors and Promises - Be Careful:  Be careful of rumors and gossip, as well as "promises".  Promises or any other inducement to play hockey in Illinois could compromise eligibility.

For More Information Regarding 
Two Choice & Player Movement Rules Click HERE

Tier II Choice Substitution: Examples & Information Regarding Application Process  
Situations That May Lead to the
 Rare Substitute Choice
EXAMPLE:  If neither Member Association the player has played for has a Tier II team at that player's age level, the player will receive a substitute choice based on the approval of AHAI.  AHAI will grant a substitute choice that makes sense geographically (travel distance from home to practice).  A player will NOT be given an "open choice"; the exemption is a substitution requiring approval.
EXAMPLE:  A player leaves their 1st Member Association and goes to a second. They encounter a problem at the new club that invokes an Rules & Ethics investigation with a finding that the Member Organization did not deal fairly with the player.  As long as the 1st club they played for has a viable Tier II team at the appropriate age level, the player must try out for that club if they desire to play Tier II.  If they are then cut (from ALL the teams in that age division), then they may apply for a substitution.  AHAI will determine if the substitution request is within geographic guidelines as associated with "community based" hockey. 
NOTE:  A change of residence which significantly impacts the distance a player needs to travel to their closest viable choice (after the relocation) MAY be considered.
Applications for Choice Substitutions 
Open July 15 and Close October 15, 2013
Click HERE to Apply
Still Have Questions?  Contact:
Gregg Chudacoff
AHAI Tier II Chairman

Tier II: Midget Third Choice Information

In Illinois, there is a Two Choice rule for Tier II team participation. Essentially, every player will have a total of two AHAI Affiliate Member Associations for which they can play for from Mite through Bantam Major. Players that are U16 and U18 aged will be granted the option for a third choice. They will be allowed to play for a third Tier II organization and they will not need to petition for a choice substitution when using their Midget third choice. Any player using a Tier II choice, including a Midget third choice, will be required to complete the online acknowledgement that they are aware that they are using a choice before they will be certified on the team's roster. This acknowledgement will be automatically sent to the player at the email that was used when they registered with USAH. It will be sent when the team has been registered with AHAI. Until the team has been registered, the player will not have the ability to acknowledge their choice. If the team has been registered, and the player has not received the email for acknowledgement from AHAI, please check the SPAM folder of the email address that was used when the player was registered with USAH. If a player was granted a choice substitution at any time, that choice will be counted as one of their three choices and they will not be eligible for an automatic Midget Third Choice. If you are unsure of your Tier II status and you do not know if you have used your choices, you can contact Laura Johnson, the AHAI Registrar at registrar@ahai2.org.  

4 IL Players Chosen at NHL Entry Draft  
David Drake of Naperville (Philadelphia Flyers)
 Ryan Hartman of West Dundee (Chicago Blackhawks)
Anthony Louis of Winfield (Chicago Blackhawks)
JT Compher of Northbrook (Buffalo Sabres)

Four Illinois players were selected during the 2013 National Hockey League Entry Draft in Newark, N.J. on Sunday, June 30.  All four young men came up through AAA Hockey in Illinois and AHAI's Player Development Program. Hartman, Louis and Compher all went on to the USA Hockey Central District and National Player Development Camps. We are incredibly proud of these four young men! Click on players' names for related news articles and/or interviews.

Bob Nardella & Ryan Wagner to Represent Illinois on U.S. Under-18 Select Team
Defenseman, Bob Nardella from Rosemont and Forward, Ryan Wagner from Park Ridge have been rostered to the 2013 U.S. Under-18 Select Team after participating in USA Hockey's Boys' Select 17 Player Development Camp. Nardella and Wagner, who both played for the Chicago Mission U16 Team, were initially identified through AHAI's Boys' Select 17 Player Development Camp. Nardella helped the U.S. Under-17 Select Team capture first place at the 2012 Under-17 Five Nations Tournament held in Chomutov, Czech Republic. Nardella and Wagner will compete at the 2013 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament Aug. 5-10 in Breclav, Czech Republic, and Piestany, Slovakia. 
  Bob Nardella
Ryan Wagner

Adult Hockey News 

All Adult Teams should check the USA Hockey Adult Hockey website frequently for skills seminars. The purpose of USA Hockey and Labatt Blue adult hockey skills clinics is to provide adults twenty-one years of age and older a fun, relaxed atmosphere to further develop the basic skills of hockey such as skating, shooting and passing.  Beginners to novice level players are welcome and our clinics are first come first serve.  Sign up quickly as seminars fill up fast.

All Adult Teams should plan to participate in the AHAI Adult State Championship Tournament in April of 2014.  Registration will begin December 1, 2013.

USA Hockey's Adult Ice Hockey Department and Adult Council will once again have a full slate of Labatt Blue Adult Classic tournaments for the 2013-2014 season. These events are invitational, recreational, non-check tournaments held in destination locations.  Multiple divisions are offered for both men and women 21 years of age and older and all players must be currently registered with USA Hockey.  If you have any questions on our Adult Classic tournaments please contact the adult hockey department at 800-566-3288.  Click HERE for a complete list of tournaments and locations for 2014.