In This Issue
Volume 2 Issue 23
March 18, 2015

By John Dunne, AHAI President - Since USA Hockey introduced the American Development Model (ADM) five years ago, Illinois hockey has been a hot bed of discussion. The main topic of discussion is about full-ice hockey for mites. Should there be or not be full-ice hockey for the 8U level? The discussion has usually been at the administrative level between Clubs, Hockey Directors, USA Hockey and AHAI. While AHAI and USA Hockey have tried to educate the clubs, along with its membership, on the benefits of the ADM and small-area training, Illinois has held fast to allowing full-ice games for older 7U and 8U mite players. I think it's time the members, or the parents of the players, at this level understand the real background of the mite discussion over the last few seasons. The goal of this letter is for you the member to be able to make your own decisions on what is the best development for your players. As expressed later in this letter, the clubs, along with USA Hockey and AHAI, want to provide the best possible product and support the members' wishes.


Facts and information about the current mite landscape:


FACT: The American Development Model (ADM) is the most effective way to develop the long term athlete, specifically hockey players. Please do the research. The ADM is not just about 8U hockey; it is about developing the skills of players at each level to help them prepare for the next levels.


INFORMATION: There is very little disagreement on the ADM as a learning tool at any administrative level. The roadblock for some is the mandated size of the 8U playing surface. While there is much evidence supporting small area competition, we have not been presented with any evidence on how full-ice games benefit 8U player development. The reality is that since there has been so much time and focus on one level, 8U, that Illinois is neglecting how important the proper training model is at the next levels.


FACT: USA Hockey rules state the size of the ice surface that 8U mites must play on. USA Hockey also allows for states to request exceptions to this rule; see below. READ MORE>>

The AHAI Annual Meeting will be held on Sunday, May 31, 2015, at the Hyatt Woodfield in Schaumburg starting at 8:30 a.m. This year the meeting format will be different and will include association board membership seminar sessions. These seminar sessions will be geared toward the education of Association Board of Directors, Hockey Directors and Coaches and other interested members. Instructors will be from AHAI and USA Hockey; each session will be 40 minutes in length. The early seminar sessions will focus primarily on the education and contacts for further assistance. The last breakout sessions will be open forums which will include updates on possible changes for each discipline along with a question and answer session. The closing session will be a brief recap of the day and the election of the AHAI Board of Directors for 2015-2016 along with any voting needed for proposed AHAI Bylaw changes. Click HERE to view full AHAI Annual Meeting Schedule.

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. This year's Adult State Tournament promises to be the best ever in the history of AHAI!  READ MORE>>
Click HERE to View Full-Size Photos Courtesy of Photos By Sully

Squirt AAA
PeeWee Minor AAA
PeeWee Major AAA
Bantam Minor AAA
Bantam Major AAA
Midget 16U AAA
Midget 18U AAA
Squirt AA
Squirt A
Squirt B
PeeWee AA

PeeWee A
PeeWee B
Bantam AA
Bantam A
Bantam B
Midget Minor AA
Midget Major AA
Girls 10U A
Co-Girls 12U A
Co-Girls 12U A
Girls 12U AA
Girls 14U A
Girls 14U AA
Girls 16U A
Girls 16U AA
Girls 19U A
Sabres (uncontested)
Girls 19U AA
St. Rita & Lincoln-Way to Represent Illinois at the 2015 Toyota/USA Hockey High School Varsity National Championship
Congratulations to both St. Rita High School and Lincoln-Way. They will be representing Illinois at the 2015 Toyota/USA Hockey High School Varsity National Championship in St Louis, Missouri. This National event will be held at the Hardee's Ice Plex in Chesterfield, Missouri Thursday, March 19 through Monday, March 23 with the crowning of a Pure Division Champion and a Combined Division Champion. Illinois' Pure Division representative will be St. Rita where all players attend the same high school and Lincoln-Way will be our Combined Division challenger where players come from more than one high school. READ MORE>>

Kohlman Cup Champions!

Girls 14U

Girls 16U

Girls 19U

Bantam 14U

6 Tier I Teams National Bound!
Good luck to our 6 Illinois Tier I Teams advancing to USA Hockey's National Championships! Illinois Girls swept the Central District Kohlman Cup Playoffs with the CYA taking the title at Girls 14U and the Mission taking the Championship titles at both the Girls 16U and Girls 19U Divisions. CYA Girls 16U and 19U teams both received at-large invitations to attend USA Hockey's Tier I Girls National Championships. The Mission also claimed a Kohlman Cup victory at the Bantam 14U Division. USA Hockey's Central District Kohlman Cup Championships were held March 13-15 at Hardee's Ice Plex in Chesterfield, MO. Click HERE for full Kohlman Cup game standings. READ MORE>>
6 Illinois Teams to Compete at 2015 Toyota/USA Hockey
Youth Tier I & Girls Tier I National Championships 

Girls 14U
Girls 16U
Girls 19U
Youth 14U
Mission Bantam 14U
7 Illinois Teams to Compete at 2015 Toyota/USA Hockey
Tier II & Girls National Championships!

Congratulations to the Tier II Youth & Tier II Girls teams representing Illinois at the 2015 Toyota/USA Hockey Tier II & Girls National Championships March 26 through March 30, 2015! Don't miss a game -  FASTHockey will be providing exclusive live streaming. Each game will be streamed live and also archived after its conclusion allowing you to replay any game on-demand. You can also keep track of the latest scores, news as well as content stream with fan photos and posts from around the country with USA Hockey's Nationals App. Click HERE to download today!

Youth Tier II 14U D3A
Chicago Blues

Youth Tier II 16U D3A
Highland Park Falcons

Youth Tier II 18U D3A
Chicago Bruins
Naperville Sabres

Girls Tier II 14U
Highland Park Falcons

Girls Tier II 16U
Highland Park Falcons

Girls Tier II 19U
Naperville Sabres
Highland Park Falcons & Peoria to Represent Illinois at the 2015 Midwest Pee Wee Tournament of Champions! 
For the 2nd year AHAI will be sending the Pee Wee Illinois State Champion and Runner-Up from the Tier II Pee Wee AA Division to the Midwest Pee Wee Tournament of Champions to face off against the State Champions from around the Midwest. Congratulations and good luck to our State Champion, the Highland Park Falcons and our State Runner-Up, Peoria. Last year Illinois was represented by the Falcons and the Chicago Huskies. State Champions from Wisconsin, North Dakota, Minnesota, Missouri and Illinois will participate in this invitational tournament March 27 through 29, 2015 at Sun Prairie Ice Arena in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin. READ MORE>>

Benet vs. Glenbrook North
Sun., March 22 at 12:00pm
United Center
Glenbard vs. Maine
Sun., March 22 at 3:00pm
United Center
Loyola vs. Latin
Sun., March 22 at 9:00am
United Center
New Trier White vs. Loyola Maroon
Thurs., March 19 at 6:40pm
The Edge Ice Arena
New Trier vs. Providence
Wed., March 18 at 8:35pm
The Edge Ice Arena
Waubonsie vs. Prep Black
Wed., March 18 at 6:40pm
The Edge Ice Arena

This marks the 28th year that AHAI will host their State Championship at the United Center/Chicago Stadium. The 2014 title was won by New Trier High School in the Red Division, Waubonsie Valley in the Combined Division and New Trier in the Girls' Division. General admission tickets for the event are available for $5 online at, in person at the United Center Box Office or by calling Ticketmaster at 800-745-3000. Parking is FREE in all official United Center parking lots. For more information, including group offers, please contact the Chicago Blackhawks Ticket Office by calling 312-455-7000.


Youth Hockey Organizations please see information at the bottom of the newsletter on how you can be part of history by participating in the largest youth hockey photo ever taken in Illinois!


After thousands of games, goals, slapshots and hip checks, the Illinois high school hockey season has been boiled down to two teams still wearing skates. Benet Academy rose from the No. 4 seed in the Red Division of the 2015 Illinois State Hockey Championship to survive. And thrive. The Red Wings' route to the finals started with a Sweet 16 win over No. 13-seed Glenbrook South, 5-2, on March 4. Benet then needed overtime on March 9 to drop perennial powerhouse Loyola Gold, 2-1. Then, on March 16, the Red Wings slipped past two-time defending state champion and the tournament's No. 1 overall seed, New Trier Green, 2-1. 
The Red Wings skate into the United Center on Sunday, March 22, for the first time ever, where they will face a school quite familiar with the final game of the season. In fact, it was just one year ago that Glenbrook North last skated for state. The Spartans lost to the Trevians a year ago, but GBN is driven to erase that setback. GBN, with the No. 2 seed, toppled No. 15-seed Sandburg, 4-0, in the Sweet 16 and then ran roughshod over No. 7 Naperville Central, 7-3, on March 10. In the semifinals, the Spartans were put to the ultimate test, and were down 1-0 minutes in and then 2-0 before they knew it, before recovering to stop the Cinderella season of No. 14-seed Notre Dame, 4-3, on March 16. READ MORE>>
Congratulations NWHL Champions!
Sixty-six teams in thirty-three divisions from Mite to Midget competed the weekend of March 6-8, 2015 at both Orland Park Ice Arena and Franklin Park Ice Arena in their quest for the NWHL Championship Title! Congratulations to all the NWHL Champions and Runners-Up. Click HERE to view list.

Ask the Official By Dave Zednik

QUESTION: Team A took a shot which was saved and then the goalkeeper (while sliding after initial stop) knocked the net off before we shot the rebound into the goal. Was this goal legal since the goalkeeper knocked the net off?

ANSWER: A goal can never be allowed if the goal frame is knocked loose from its normal position before the puck crosses the line. Even if the goalkeeper's actions are deliberate (assess a minor penalty, but disallow the goal). READ MORE>>
2014 IHHF Bio Series: Rocky Wirtz, Builders' Category


Rockwell (Rocky) Wirtz was named President of Wirtz Corporation and Chairman of the Chicago Blackhawks in October 2007, following his late father, William W. Wirtz. In his role as Chairman of the Chicago Blackhawks, he oversees all aspects of the club's operations.


Rocky was just 2 years old when his grandfather, Arthur Wirtz, purchased the Chicago Blackhawks in 1954. Rocky grew up within the walls of the storied Chicago Stadium, and in 2010 and 2013, he oversaw the team's historic Stanley Cup championship victories.


As President of Wirtz Corporation, Rocky's role extends to a vast array of businesses, from beverage distribution to financial services, insurance and real estate. READ MORE>>

28th Annual High School Scholarship Awards Luncheon & Recognition of the Keith Magnuson Blackhawk Alumni Scholarship Recipients

On Monday, March 9, Chicago Blackhawk Players, Coaches and Management and members of the Illinois hockey community gathered together for the 28th Annual High School Scholarship Awards Luncheon to recognize the three high school recipients of the Keith Magnuson Blackhawk Alumni Scholarship Award - Joseph Orecchio of St. Viator, William Spell of Brother Rice and Margot Werner of Latin School of Chicago. The Blackhawk Alumni Association has now awarded 91 scholarships totaling over $1,200,000 in education for High School players in Illinois. READ MORE FOR FULL LIST OF HONOREES AND PICTURES>>
  • Margot Werner: High School Hockey Star Wins Scholarship Then Meets Her Hero, Patrick Kane READ MORE>>
  • 2015 NTDP Evaluation Camp Roster Includes 4 Illinois Natives READ MORE>>
  • Illinois' Fischer Makes USHL History as U18s Cruise Past Omaha READ MORE>>
Blackhawks Youth Hockey Referee Spotlight

The Youth Hockey Referee Spotlight highlights two amateur hockey referees from Illinois per month and gives them the opportunity to attend a Blackhawks game and meet the NHL refs prior to puck drop. The impact and contribution of youth referees in hockey is as important as the players, and this is a great opportunity to reward them for their contributions.


Featured in the fourth spotlight are Danny Goldberg and Mathias Cyranek. They attended the game vs. the Boston Bruins on February 22, 2015. They were selected as part of Hockey Weekend Across America. READ MORE>>


Pictured from left to right: Bryan Pancich, Danny Goldberg, Mathias Cyranek, Dave Jackson, and Lonnie Cameron

Blackhawks Youth Hockey Captains Spolight

The Captain Spotlight is a youth hockey initiative that features four local high school hockey captains per month. These captains are invited to a Blackhawks game and are interviewed on the defining characteristics of what makes a good leader. With the Illinois High School Hockey Championships coming up in March, Blackhawks Youth Hockey wanted to take a closer look at what it takes to be captain of a high school hockey team. Featured in the February spotlight are Jessica Flatley, Danny Dirst, Steve Hill and Jared Hippman. READ MORE>>


Pictured from left to right: Jessica Flatley, Danny Dirst, Steve HIll and Jared Hippman.


Championship Schedule
Girls Division - 9:00 a.m.
Boys Red Division - 12:00 p.m. - live on Comcast SportsNet
Boys Combined Division - 3:00 p.m.

All youth hockey players wearing their current jersey at the Illinois High School Hockey Championships will take a picture on the ice after the Red Division Championship. Participants must purchase a $5 ticket to the Illinois High School Hockey Championships through the youth hockey organization's link provided by the Chicago Blackhawks (ask your team manager for your organization's code). Call 312.455.7000 for more details.

Youth Hockey Organization Awards
Organization with the highest attendance will receive a full game-day scrimmage experience at the United Center during the 2015-16 season. Organizations with the 2nd and 3rd highest attendance will receive a private tour of the Chicago Blackhawks Locker Room. Organizations with the 4th and 5th highest attendance will watch a Chicago Blackhawks practice at the United Center.