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Volume 2 Issue 19
January 21, 2015

Colin Kronforst, a diehard Green Bay Packers fan, will be as proud as an Aaron Rodgers touchdown pass when he skates onto the ice at ... Soldier Field, home of the Chicago Bears. On Saturday, Feb. 7, one of the biggest rivalries in college hockey takes center stage in Chicago when the University of Michigan battles Michigan State University at Soldier Field in the Hockey City Classic. The puck drops outdoors at 7 p.m. And Kronforst will be the one dropping that puck. Kronforst, 27, who lives in Chicago's Lakeview neighborhood, and works as a Media Associate at Spark SMG, is one of the four on-ice officials for the battle. He is a 2005 graduate of St. Viator High School in north suburban Arlington Heights who graduated from Northeasterm Illinois University in 2010 with a business management degree. READ MORE>>


Click the logo below to purchase your tickets to the

Hockey City Classic


You could win two (2) 100 Level Tickets (Section 102; Row 5) to the Blackhawks vs. Panthers Game on Tuesday, February 24, 2015 at 7:30pm at the United Center. Tickets include free parking in Lot H! Contest ends at Noon on Saturday, February 14! Winner will be announced in the February 18th edition of SNAPSHOT and will also receive 2 AHAI/Howies Hockey Tape T-shirts! Good Luck! ENTER NOW>>

2015 AHAI Player Development Process Begins this Month
By Doug Becht, AHAI Player Development Chair

All Tier I, Tier II, Prep and High School Varsity players within the 1998, 1999, 2000 and 2001 birth years are eligible by invitation only for the 2015 Amateur Hockey Association of Illinois (AHAI) Player Development/ Identification Tryout Camp held in Bensenville, Illinois, the weekend of March 20 - 22, 2015. The process began last week with an online ranking of each of the age appropriate players. AHAI has developed a web tool that allows ALL the Illinois Head Coaches, from each of the above divisions, to go online to rank ONLY those players they saw play during this season. The due date for these rankings to be completed is by early February. These Head Coaches will be ranking the "best" players from this State, NOT JUST THEIR OWN PLAYERS, within a specific birth year, by position, starting with number 1 as the best and so on down the line. READ MORE>>

Photo of the Month Contest

Don't forget to submit your photos to Gretchen Cockey at for the January Photo of the Month Contest! Deadline to submit is Saturday, January 24!

SNAPSHOT Volunteer Writers Wanted

Are you interested in writing about sports, youth hockey in particular? AHAI is seeking fundamentally sound writers throughout Illinois to contribute content to our bi-weekly newsletter, SNAPSHOT, and other media produced throughout the season. SNAPSHOT Volunteer Writers will be assigned (and/or propose) human interest stories surrounding our youth players, coaches and leaders in Illinois. Interested candidates should possess a unique, passionate voice and be able to meet strict deadlines. Please contact Gretchen Cockey at for more information.

Boys' and Girls' High School and Youth/Girls' Coach of the Year Awards

AHAI recognizes that Illinois Hockey is comprised not only of incredible players, but also of great Boys' and Girls' High School and Youth/Girls' Hockey Coaches that guide our teams both on and off the ice. Candidates for AHAI's Boys' and Girls' High School and Youth/Girls' Hockey Coach of the Year Awards should embody good sportsmanship and respect towards team, parents and officials while providing a positive High School or Youth/Girls' Hockey experience. Candidates should also teach positive life skills while demonstrating dedication, passion and commitment to community. Click HERE for nomination form. Deadline to nominate is Friday, February 20, 2015.

Click Division Name for Complete State Tournament Information

AHAI Announces 2015 Adult State Tournament!
By Robert Fiorio, Adult State Tournament Chair

AHAI announces that the 2015 Men's and Women's State Tournament at various adult levels (Multiple Men's and Women's Divisions for all skill levels, Novice/Rec, CII, CI, B, A) will take place at the Darien Sportsplex from April 23-26, 2015. The Adult State Tournament is open to Adult (21+) Men & Women USA Hockey registered players and teams who played at least 8 games together in the 2014-2015 season, or non-USA league teams and players that wish to become USA Hockey members before the Tournament. Players may play on only one team in the Tournament. READ MORE>>

The Enemy of Excellence in Youth Sports  READ MORE>>
One Bad Tweet Can Be Costly to a Student Athlete READ MORE>>
Olympian Coyne Reflects On Her U18 Experience READ MORE>>
High School Hockey By Ross Forman

As a bantam playing for the Northbrook Bluehawks, Garrett Cohen was in goal for a three-overtime win over Rockford to advance to the state tournament. It was, without question, "one of the longest games I have ever played in," he said. A lasting memory, even years later, as Cohen is now set to end his local career in two months or so. Hopefully not less, he says, knowing the Illinois State Championship will be decided for the Red Division on Sunday, March 22, at the United Center. Cohen wants another lasting memory - definitely a better one than last season, when the Spartans lost 2-1 to New Trier Green, as the Trevians won their second title in a row. "I think we have a very good chance to go all the way this year. We have great team chemistry and have been playing great hockey recently," said Cohen, 17, a senior who lives in Northbrook and is in his second season on the Spartans' varsity. The left-handed goalie who sports jersey No. 30 and a distinctive butterfly style of play is one of the main reasons GBN appears on cruise control bound for the United Center. READ MORE>>

All-State Games Set for February 9
Each year AHAI conducts a High School All-State game for the boys' and girls' varsity divisions statewide; this year will mark the 26th year of this very special event. Players are selected by the High School Varsity coaches throughout the State of Illinois. The 2015 Boys' and Girls' High School All-State game will be played on Monday, February 9, 2015 at the Edge Ice Arena in Bensenville. The Girls' game will start at 6:40 p.m. and the Boys' game will begin at 8:35 p.m. Admission is free! Mark your calendars now to come watch the "best play the best".
2015 America's Showcase
America's Showcase will take place from April 8-13, 2015 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The AHAI High School coaching community is honored to have the opportunity to be involved with the top High School players in Illinois. They feel that America's High School Showcase offers players a great opportunity to be exposed to Junior, College and Professional Scouts from throughout the USA and Canada and the honor to represent Illinois in the best High School Hockey event in North America. It is very important that all of the players that are trying out for this team understand the requirements and the commitment they are expected to make. READ MORE>>
Blackhawk Alumni Increases Scholarships to $7,500.00 a Year!
Dear Illinois High School Hockey Senior: We wanted to make you aware of a unique opportunity for all graduating Illinois High School Players (Seniors). This is an annual scholarship which is provided by the Chicago Blackhawk Alumni Association to three Illinois High School hockey players. The Alumni Association was formed in 1987 by former Blackhawk players (Stan Mikita, Keith Magnuson, Cliff Koroll, and many others) with one of the main goals being giving back to Illinois youth hockey, High School in particular. As a part of this charge, the Alumni awards three annual $5,000 scholarships (for 4 years) - THIS NEXT YEAR THE AMOUNT HAS BEEN RAISED TO $7,500.00 (for four years - totaling $$28,000.00) to "the most deserving high school hockey players" in the state. READ MORE>>
North Central Division News

The past week saw several big match-ups that would help solidify the race for the regular season division champions and the all-important seeding for the playoffs. New Trier Blue played Highland Park to a 3-3- tie on January 14th.  Two days later Highland Park skated to another tie against Maine (2-2), and Maine fell to New Trier Blue on Sunday, January 18th in a game that wasn't short on offense (8-5) while BGHW sat idle in league play. What does it all mean? READ MORE>>
Clarification of Playing Rules & Implications Regarding Player Eligibility
By Michael Barrett, IL Referee-in-Chief/Supervisor of Officials

At this time of the year inquiries are made regarding playing rules and their implications regarding player eligibility. I will try to identify some key items for coaches, players and administrators to be aware of as the season winds down and playoffs approach.


The USA Hockey playing rules vary regarding the amount of time associated with a particular infraction. Infractions may result in a player receiving something as "small" as a minor penalty; some require a minor penalty and misconduct; some allow for a major penalty; some require a major penalty and game misconduct; some require an automatic major and game misconduct; and others include the possibility or mandates of a match penalty. There is no simple rule of thumb to replace the required knowledge of which infraction carries which assessed "time". However, the USA Hockey playing rules mandate that any time an infraction results in an injury to the non-offending player, a major penalty and a game misconduct (or a match penalty) are required. In this regard, the official has no discretion but to impose the major/game or a match. READ MORE>>

Ask the Official By Dave Zednik

QUESTION: Team A's Head Coach is assessed a bench minor penalty for Abuse of Officials. While that penalty is still being served, the Assistant Coach now starts verbally abusing the Referee. What penalty should the Referee assess?

ANSWER: Game Misconduct Penalty. Rule Reference 601(e.1). Provided the abuse is a continuation of the original action causing the bench minor penalty to be assessed, the game misconduct shall be assessed even though it is a different Team Official. This helps avoid the situation where two or more Team Officials work together to continue their inappropriate behavior without consequence greater than a bench minor penalty. This is only applied when the abuse is a continuation of the original penalty. If the second Team Official engages in improper conduct several minutes later in response to a different situation, then the Referee must assess another bench minor penalty to start the penalty progression over.
Chicago Blackhawks Youth Hockey Referee Spotlight
By Spencer Montgomery, Chicago Blackhawks Youth Hockey Coordinator

The Chicago Blackhawks Youth Hockey Department has created a new program called the Youth Hockey Referee Spotlight. The spotlight highlights two amateur hockey referees from Illinois per month and gives them the opportunity to come to a Blackhawks game and meet the NHL refs prior to puck drop. A photo of the youth referees with the NHL refs will be featured on the Blackhawks website. The impact and contribution of youth referees in hockey is as important as players, and this is a great opportunity to highlight them making a difference. Featured in the first spotlight are Karch Weyermuller and Shane Gustafson. They attended the game vs the Colorado Avalanche on January 6th. READ MORE>>


Derek Denoyer was born on October 21, 1961 in Kankakee, IL. When he was five, his family moved to Buffalo, NY. Surrounded by snow and ice, Derek put on his first pair of skates and stepped onto the neighborhood pond. His love for the game of hockey began. Over the next 12 years, Derek's passion for the game grew. He quickly went from house league to travel hockey, which included many early mornings and hours in the family station wagon. Derek then played on his High School team and then juniors. This led to playing at the collegiate level in Rochester, MN. In 1979, his proudest moment as a player came when he was invited to attend a try-out session for the 1980 Olympic team in Detroit, Michigan. READ MORE>>

The IHHF Induction Dinner will be held on Sunday, January 25, 2015 at the Belvedere Banquet Hall in Elk Grove Village. We encourage the Illinois Hockey Community to join us in welcoming the Class of 2014 into the Illinois Hockey Hall of Fame. Tickets are available by contacting Norm Spiegel at 847.269.2922 or e-mail Norm at
OPRF Hockey Club Honors First Responders at Paul Hruby Ice Arena
By Roy Phifer, President of OPRF Hockey Club

Sunday, October 5, 2014 is a day no one in the tight knit hockey community in Oak Park will ever forget. OPRF Huskies varsity hockey player Grey Small collapsed before his game against Sandburg. Luckily, a group of first responders acted quickly to save a young life at the rink that day.The OPRF Hockey Club honored the first responders who saved Grey's life with a special ceremony at the Paul Hruby Ice Arena on Thursday, January 8. Huskies Hockey, Sandburg Hockey and Illinois West also raised over $4,000 for the Saving Tiny Hearts Society in honor of Emily Petersen, the nurse who performed CPR on Grey until paramedics arrived at the rink. Saving Tiny Hearts raises funds for research into the diagnosis and treatment of congenital heart defects. READ MORE>>

 Lilly Bianchi!

AHAI congratulates Lilly Bianchi, who plays for the Lake Forest High School Scouts. Bianchi's essay, "Beyond the Scoreboard"is featured as one of the 3 runner-up articles in USA Hockey Magazine's December issue.
Captain Dunne Scores Overtime Power Play Goal to Clinch Medal

U.S. Women's National Under-18 Team captain Jincy Dunne tallied two goals, including the gold-medal clinching goal, in an exciting 3-2 overtime victory against rival Canada in the 2015 International Ice Hockey Federation Under-18 Women's World Championship. READ MORE>>
USA Hockey/Central District Girls Player Development Information 
By Mary Ann Robinson, Girls'/Women's Section Representative 


Registration for the Central District/USA Hockey National Camps will open on February 15 and close March 1. Any player interested in an opportunity to attend the National Camp and/or the Central District Camp MUST attend the tryout on April 17-19, 2015 in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin.  All players will be emailed a registration link the week of February 8.  The registration fee for this tryout will be $125.00.  Please email Mary Ann Robinson if you have additional questions/concerns.


Search is on for Most Passionate Hockey Communities

The puck officially dropped for Kraft HockeyvilleTM USA - the search for America's most passionate hockey community. Hockey communities across the U.S. can vie for the esteemed title of "Kraft HockeyvilleTM USA" and enter for a chance to win the grand prize of hosting an NHL® Pre-Season game televised live on NBCSN and $150,000 in arena upgrades. READ MORE>>

Gretzky Hockey School - "The Great One" Hockey School Giveaway

The Gretzky Hockey School is an experience most people dream of. It is an incredible opportunity for your child to gain knowledge of the game and improve their skills in a fun, unique environment, while making memories for a lifetime. The Gretzky Hockey School will be a week of memories you will never forget. ENTER TODAY>>

Honor Flight Chicago Presents the 4th Annual Law Enforcement Hockey Classic

Purchase your tickets today for the 4th Annual Honor Flight Chicago Law Enforcement Classic. The Chicago Police Department will take on the Chicago FBI on Saturday, February 28 at 7pm. Doors open at 6:30pm and seating is general admission. Advance tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for children under 12. Tickets purchased at door are $25 for all ages. Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets.
Unite on the Ice

On Thursday, February 5 All-Star hockey greats will reunite on the ice at Soldier Field in this rare showdown of historical hockey talent. All proceeds benefit St. Jude, where no family ever receives a bill for treatment, travel, housing or food. Proceeds from the open-skate sessions, plus raffles and auctions for the chance to win signed memorabilia and prizes, will all benefit the kids of St. Jude. READ MORE>>

NIU's AHAI Youth Hockey Night
Don't miss the Northern Illinois University Huskies take on rival St. Louis University Billikens on Friday, January 23 at 7:30 p.m. at the Leafs Ice Centre. All AHAI players in their jerseys will receive free admission to the game. Come see two of the top ACHA college teams in the Midwest faceoff against one another! Click HERE for more details!

Chicago Mission's
Pink in the Rink
The Chicago Mission prides itself on producing not only great athletes, but great people as well. Every year, the girls program at the Chicago Mission hosts a 'Pink In The Rink' fundraiser in order to increase awareness about cancer and raise money for the American Cancer Society. This will be the Mission Girls 7th annual Pink In The Rink. READ MORE>>

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