AHAI Newsletter
Volume 1 Issue 18 
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In This Issue

Official Media
Partner of AHAI
December's "Just For Mites" Newsletter
Latest Issue Now Online!

Mite parents and coaches, did you miss the latest issue of AHAI's "Just For Mites" e-newsletter? It has information about AHAI's Mite Task Force, January's Chicago ADM World Tour, practice plans for both on- and off-ice and much more!

2014 State Tournament Information
Tier I, Tier II, Girls & High School Information


Illinois State Hockey Championships, presented by Chicagoland and Northwest Indiana Chevy Dealers, and sponsored, in part, by the Chicago Blackhawks begin in early February with the Elimination Rounds and concludes with the Championship Games in all Divisions in mid-March. Click levels below for more information.






2014 Adult State Championship
Men's & Women's Adult State Tournament
The 2014 Adult State Tournament hosted by the AHAI Adult Committee will be held Thursday, April 3 through Sunday, April 6 at Seven Bridges Ice Arena and Center Ice of DuPage. All Championship Games will be held on Sunday, April 6. There will be prizes, gifts and giveaways for all participants, and AHAI Banners and individual awards to all Division Finalists.

High School Hockey with Ross Forman
Ho Ho Tournament Time

Twenty teams will be battling for bragging rights in the 20th annual Chicago Blackhawks Charities Holiday Hockey Classic, running Dec. 26-29, at The Edge Ice Arena in Bensenville. Glenbrook North looks to defend its tournament title, while Christian Brothers College (CBC) High School hopes to take the title back to Missouri, as the Cadets have done many times in recent years. CBC, the only non-Illinois team in the Ho Ho Tournament, has won the Missouri state championship 12 times since 1983, including three straight from 2007-2009, and most recently in 2012. "This tournament is a real good measuring stick, to see where you are.  Doing well in this tournament can really help a team build momentum," said GBN head coach Evan Poulakidas.







*Ya gotta feel for Cary Grove, which has a 1-24 record, and is 0-19 in the North-Central Division.  The Trojans' lone victory was against Carmel, 5-3, on Nov. 24 in Crystal Lake.


*Loyola Gold stopped New Trier Green, 6-3, in Winnetka on Dec. 14.


*Providence Catholic is primed for a run deep into the playoffs, with a 31-4-1-2 record, including a 13-0-1-0 mark in the Catholic League. The Celtics had a 13-game winning streak earlier this season, and were undefeated (one tie) in a 19-game stretch. After losing to Glenbrook North, 2-1 in overtime, on Nov. 17, Providence won its next 10.




Editor's Note: Ross Forman has written about Illinois high school hockey for nearly 15 years, and is the only sportswriter to have covered Illinois High School hockey every year during that stretch. He played locally and then at Indiana University before becoming a referee. Ross was a referee for the State Championship game several years ago at the United Center. Contact Ross at Rossco814@aol.com.
Ross Forman's High School Rankings
1.     New Trier Green

2.     Glenbrook North

3.     Providence

4.     Loyola Gold

5.     Stevenson

6.     Benet

7.     Naperville Central

8.     Waubonsie Valley

9.     St. Rita

10.  Maine Township

11.  Highland Park

12.  BG/H/W

13.  Rockford

14.  Fenwick

15.  AWF Renegades

16.  St. Ignatius

17.  Sandburg

18.  Lincolnway

19.  New Trier Blue

20.  Neuqua Valley


Editor's Note: Ross Forman's High School Rankings are compiled by Ross Forman through feedback from coaches from every league.

BMO Harris Bank Player, Coach & Volunteer of the Month ~ November
3 Honored for Month of November at Blackhawks vs. Flyers Game Dec. 11
For the past six seasons, BMO Harris Bank, in partnership with the Chicago Blackhawks, has honored one youth hockey coach and youth hockey player each month for outstanding achievements both on the ice and in their communities. This year a volunteer of the month will also be awarded. Each candidate was nominated by teammates, coaches, family or friends through the Chicago Blackhawks' website and chosen by an amateur hockey committee. AHAI congratulates Daniel, Sean and Tina on this honor, and celebrates their achievements both on and off the ice.
Daniel Niersbach
BG/H/W Stampede
Sean Sodko
MsConduct Women's Hockey 
Tina Jackson
Kankakee Coyotes 
Youth Hockey Club
Know a worthy candidate for Player, Coach and/or Volunteer of the Month? Nominate them today!

Skating Into The New Year!
Seasons Greetings Video From AHAI & NoozeBox.com

New Year, New Look, New Name!
Contest Winner Announced January 9

AHAI will be ringing in the New Year with both a new name and look for our e-Newsletter! We will announce the winner of our "Name the Newsletter" contest on January 9. The lucky winner will receive a signed Blackhawks jersey from the player of their choice. AHAI wishes all our hockey families a safe, healthy, happy and prosperous New Year!
Peoria Thanks Hockey Clubs & Families
By NoozeBox.com

The hockey community united from all over to help those displaced by the Peoria tornado. NoozeBox spoke with Drew Cassidy of Hockey Supports Hockey, and Wendy Wagner, a Peoria Youth Hockey Club Mom. Both of the victims had the utmost to say about the generosity of all the hockey clubs not just in Illinois, but from other states as well. According to Cassidy, several clubs that were playing in Peoria showed up with donations, gift cards, and relief money. As they approach the $40,000 mark, it has been unbelievably helpful for the families in need. "This was particularly moving as it allowed several of the displaced families to personally greet those teams and express their appreciation (and disbelief) at the generosity." Wendy Wagner explained just how important those gift cards were to her family as well as others that had been displaced.  Wendy has three boys who all play hockey. If it weren't for hockey, the Wagner family would have been at home when the tornado hit, instead the family was at the rink, watching her son's game.


The best High School teams throughout the Midwest will compete in the Chicago Blackhawk Charities 20th Annual Holiday Hockey Classic (Ho Ho Tournament) December 26th through the 29th at The Edge in Bensenville! Tickets are available for this four day tournament at The Edge - $5 for students and $7 for adults with proceeds supporting Chicago Blackhawks Charities. Presented by Coca-Cola Zero and Supported by Comcast Sportsnet.





Editor's Note: Don't miss a second of the action! NoozeBox.com and High School Cube (HSC) will broadcast all quarterfinal and semifinal Ho Ho Tournament games live December 28 and 29. Championship Game will be broadcast on December 29 at 4:30 p.m.

Meet Efren Molina, Builders' Category
Illinois Hockey Hall of Fame (IHHF) Inductee Series

Efren Molina, better known as Coach e, was born in 1958 and was raised on Chicago's far south side. His parents emigrated from Mexico; he lived there briefly as a child and maintains close ties to his family and village in Mexico. Along with his father, Jose, Coach e has 2 brothers, Paul and Sergio, and a sister, Ninfa, not to mention many nephews and nieces. He has called Chicago's north side his home for over 30 years.


Coach e was a product of the Chicago Public School system and graduated from Sullivan elementary school, and then Bowen High School in 1976. After a brief time as a laborer at U.S. Steel's South Works 54" beam plant, he received a bachelor's degree from Northern Illinois University in Interior Architecture.



Dear USA Hockey Coaches, Officials and Volunteers
Important Letter From Dave Ogrean, Executive Director of USA Hockey regarding SafeSport

One of the most exciting aspects of the USA Hockey SafeSport Program is the online training/education that is available to help our members become aware of the information necessary to help prevent abuse from occurring in our sport. Your dedication to safety in our sport is demonstrated by the over 15,000 USA Hockey members that have already completed the SafeSport training.

USA Hockey, in connection with the USOC, is pleased to announce a new permanent platform for the online training, which will be more user-friendly and will include enhancements that among other things will allow participants to view their test question answers and results. This letter is to provide guidance about our transition to this new training platform.

Chicago ADM World Tour Update
By Jim Clare, ADM/Mite Task Force Chairman

The ADM USA Hockey Tour through the Chicagoland area is shaping up to be a monster event. To date 10 rinks and/or associations have asked for time with USA Hockey ADM Staff. To all those that have inquired, I will have dates and times set in a few days. They include Jets, Hoffman Estates, Fox Valley Ice Arena/Cyclones, Evanston, Niles, West Meadows, Bloomington, Sabres, Hawks and Jaguars. If your rink and/or associations would like to get on the Chicago ADM World Tour schedule, please let me know ASAP. Dates for the event are Jan 8, 9, and 10 in the evening and Jan 11 during the morning hours. Additionally, USA Hockey ADM Staff is available at certain times during the day to meet with Club Staff and answer questions.


The parent/coaches' meetings are really geared toward your 6U members in order for them to better understand the ADM and the principles that it represents from a development perspective for your players. However, we can accommodate whatever audience you feel will benefit from this type of meeting. We look forward to the USA Hockey ADM Staff and members of the National Office visiting with us here in Illinois. Let's take advantage of this great opportunity! Contact Jim Clare at jclare@sabrehockey.com for more information.

McKee Selected to Represent USA at Sochi Paralympics!
Kevin Proves Doctors Wrong by Becoming a Paralympian

Kevin McKee, from Chicago, Illinois, was recently selected to the US Paralympic Sled team to compete for the gold medal at the Paralympic games in Sochi, Russia, this coming March.


Kevin is no stranger to setting his mind on a goal and then working as hard as it takes to achieve that goal. When Kevin was just a young boy, the doctors and therapists told him he wouldn't be able to compete in sports because of his disability - Casual Regression Syndrome. He decided otherwise and began playing wheelchair basketball and youth sled hockey. Living in Davenport, Iowa, Kevin had to have his parents drive him to Peoria every weekend to participate in wheelchair basketball, but was able to participate in sled hockey in his hometown of the quad cities.


Bloomingdale Woman to Take the Ice as Olympic Referee

Erin Blair has spent much of her life training for the Winter Olympics. In February, the Bloomingdale resident will take the ice to officiate games featuring the greatest women's hockey players in the world at the Sochi Olympics. 


Blair, 32, a health teacher at Lakewood School in Carpentersville-based Community Unit District 300, has been a referee on the youth, local, national and international levels for 14 years. The Lisle native will represent the International Ice Hockey Federation at the Olympics during the women's hockey series and says she still can't believe this is actually happening.


"It's something I've been working toward for a long time. There are so many people in the system who want what I want - there were never any guarantees," Blair said. "It's going to be on a huge stage. It's a worldwide event. It's something that, honestly, I don't even know what to expect."



Not Just for High School
Start Streaming Your Tier I, Tier II, Tier III or Girls' Games

HighSchoolCube.com would like to work with you to showcase all that's good about your hockey club.  High School Cube will create a FREE "cube" for your hockey club and you can start broadcasting your hockey game LIVE in HD in just minutes.

Your club will have a hyper-local TV channel where everyone can watch your games live and relive the exciting games and highlights with family and friends. Also, use your "cube" to raise money through sponsorships for your hockey club. Call Kevin Doyle today at 312.445.8534 or email him at kdoyle@highschoolcube.com to learn more.
Chesson Gifts OneGoal Equipment 
Tomahawks to Receive 12 OneGoal Equipment Sets

Lisa Chesson of Plainfield, IL, current member of the 2014 US Women's National Team and 2010 Olympic Winter Games silver medalist, was given an opportunity to donate OneGoal equipment to a local association of her choice that was significant to her hockey experience. Chesson chose the Tomahawks. They will receive 12 sets of OneGoal equipment! OneGoal equipment sets help rinks and associations give new families a chance to play hockey by removing equipment as a barrier to entry. OneGoal equipment sets includes everything except for skates and a stick (shin pads, shoulder pads, elbow pads, pants, gloves, a helmet with a cage and a bag).
Wear the Ring of a Champion!
Chicago Blackhawks Charities

Wear the ring of a champion! Win your very own authentic, personalized 2013 Chicago Blackhawks Stanley Cup Championship Ring! Be a part of Blackhawks history and wear what the players wore to celebrate the historic 2013 season. One winner will be chosen March 21, 2014 and will receive the customized ring at the April 6, 2014 game. Tickets are only $2 each (with a minimum purchase of 5 tickets). All proceeds benefit Chicago Blackhawks Charities.
Skate Like an "Animal"!
Now Through March 2 at Lincoln Park Zoo

Introducing a new, exciting Chicago winter tradition: Ice Skating at Lincoln Park Zoo! Enjoy ice skating every day all winter long at the Farm-in-the-Zoo. Bring your own skates or rent them at the Farmhouse. Warm up in the Main Barn and enjoy refreshments for purchase. Lockers will be available for rental. Open daily - $5 admission; $5 skate rental. For participants of all ages.
Boston, Tampa, Chicago, St. Paul Get Upcoming Men's Frozen Fours
USCHO Staff Report, December 11, 2013

Three returning hosts and one new venue were selected to host men's Frozen Fours from 2015 to 2018, the NCAA announced Wednesday. Boston's TD Garden will host its third Frozen Four in 2015; the Tampa Bay Times Forum in Tampa, Fla., will get its second in 2016; and the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minn., will see its third in 2018. Chicago's United Center will host for the first time in 2017. Women's Frozen Fours were awarded to Minneapolis' Ridder Arena in 2015 and 2018; the Whittemore Center Arena in Durham, N.H., in 2016; and the Family Arena in St. Charles, Mo., in 2017.



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