California Rubber Magazine - March 2018

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MARCH 2018


FROM THE EDITOR Most exciting part of the ’17-18 season starting to take shape


Matt Mackinder

his part of the hockey season is always bittersweet. Yes, teams are peaking and some are off to USA Hockey Youth Nationals, but others have already finished up the season and are making plans for the 201819 season. It’s hard to believe we are already into March – where did the season go? Seems like yesterday that tryouts were being held for the season and Labor Day tournaments were running at top speed. Now, teams are ramping up to travel to a number of locations for nationals. That said, best of luck to those teams still playing and for those that have closed the book on 2017-18, keep your heads up and congratulations on terrific seasons!

The AHL’s Stockton Heat announced recently Pacific Heats Up, a collaboration between the Heat and the University of the Pacific Sport Management program, which to take place on Friday, April 6 as the Heat host the San Jose Barracuda at 7 p.m. at Stockton Arena. Twelve students in the Sport Event and Facility Management class will “take over” the Heat’s game and work with Heat staff on all aspects of the business including ticket sales, sponsorships sales, marketing and event operations. “We’re excited to work with professor Pete Schroeder and this talented group of Pacific students to get real-world, hands-on experience in managing and planning an event of this magnitude and helping us grow our event presentation business,” Heat CEO Brian Petrovek said. “All 12 of these students have an interest in becoming the next crop of successful sports executives, and the experience they’ll receive will give these students a leg up as they determine what aspect in the sports and entertainment industry they’d like to pursue as a full-time career.” The Vegas Golden Knights are bringing street hockey to Clark County middle schools in partnership with NV Energy and the NHL through the Golden Knights Hockey Academy Program. Clark County middle schools taking part in this initiative will be provided a full set of street hockey equipment, teaching guides and a student curriculum book to implement street hockey into the physical education programs. All physical education teachers will go through proper hockey training provided by the Golden Knights youth hockey development staff. “This partnership is a great opportunity to help grow youth hockey and create excitement for the sport among middle schoolers in Clark County,” said Golden Knights president Kerry Bubolz. Three teams from Toyota Sport Center recently participated in the annual 2018 California State Games in San Diego over Presidents’ Day weekend. The Mite Track 2 team captured the silver medal, while the Squirt B and Pee Wee B teams were competitive and successful against tough competition from Colorado, Arizona and Northern California. All three teams were coached by Mark Petrovich. “The hockey weekend was all about camaraderie, teamwork and sportsmanship,” said Petrovich. “More importantly, every player and parent had lots of fun and made new friends.” The three teams were made up of in-house players put together just for this tournament. This time of year also brings about college commitments and we have a slew to announce with California connections. Simi Valley native, California Titans grad and Odessa Jackalopes forward Evan Somoza has committed to NCAA Division III Utica College, while three current or former Anaheim Lady Ducks made their choices, as 19U AA defenseman Kimberly Mills, who also played for Orange Lutheran High School, is off to ACHA Concordia in Ann Arbor, Mich., for that team’s inaugural season this fall, Lily Humphrey, also a former member of the California Wave, will play NCAA D-I for the University of Vermont after a post-grad year at New Hampton School, and current 19U AAA goalie Savannah Gutierrez will join Somoza at Utica. Congrats to all!

Contact Matt Mackinder at 4

California Rubber Hockey Magazine

California Rubber Magazine is published by: Mackinder Media, LLC, P.O. Box 373 Goodrich, MI 48438, 10 times a year, once monthly September through May and once in the summer. Postmaster: send address changes to: P.O. Box 373 Goodrich, MI 48438 Ph. (248) 890-3944 Email: Subscription Rates: $49.95 USD * Single Copy: $3.95 USD Mail subscriptions to: P.O. Box 373 Goodrich, MI 48438 Subscriptions are non-refundable REPORT AN ERROR IMMEDIATELY California Rubber Magazine will not be responsible for more than one incorrect insertion Visit our Web site at: Like us on Facebook: Follow us on Twitter: @CARubberHockey

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Publisher/editor: Matt Mackinder senior designer: Julie Wilson


Eastvale native Cayla Barnes celebrates after the U.S. women’s hockey team defeated Canada to win the gold medal at the 2018 Winter Olympics last month in PyeongChang, South Korea. More on Barnes on Page 7.

ON THE COVER The LA Lions are helping to grow girls hockey not only in the state of California, but on all of the West Coast. Pictured back row are Lions players Morgan Agran (16U) and Riley Lewis (16U), middle row Lily Winckler (10U) and Bailey Mollet (8U) and in front, Lydia Behner (12U). Photo/Jeff Berting Photography

Open to tier level players who desire to compete at the highest level during the spring


ll about!

ea ’r e w t a h w e se w o n – m ra g You’ve heard about our pro


Lady Ducks advance five to USA Hockey Youth Nationals By Chris Bayee


Alexandria Young added one as the Lady Ducks capped an undefeated run with a 3-2 victory over Anchorage, which had to beat the Jr. Sharks to reach the final. 16U AAA: Emme Hayes’ goal 10:06 into overtime lifted the Lady Ducks over Anchorage 2-1 in the third game of the teams’ best-of-three series. Alexandria Tillemans gave the LDs a lead midway through the third period, but the North Stars tied it with 10 seconds to play in

were uncontested in the district and advanced directly to Nationals.

irl power is alive and well in California. The Golden State captured all six Pacific District Boys AAA and AA spots – five by the Anaheim Lady Ducks – California also fared well on the boys side, winning to qualify for the USA Hockey Youth Nationals back on three of four AAA titles, including two by the Anaheim Jr. March 8-11 at Solar4America Ice at San Jose. Ducks and one by the Los Angeles Jr. Kings, who turned The five Nationals qualifiers (14U AA, 14U AAA, 16U in the tournament’s most dominant performance en route AA, 16U AAA and 19U AAA) is a high-water mark to the Bantam AAA crown. for the 19-year-old Lady Ducks, whose Women’s C 18U AAA: The Jr. Ducks shut out the Jr. team also is headed to Nationals in the Boston area. Kings 6-0 in the final. Val Ardizzone scored two “We feel like we’re highly competitive at Tier I but goals and Logan Harris, Zachary Pires, Dylan to have Tier II do so well is a dream come true,” Lady Reightley and Ryan Fischer added goals. AnaDucks program director and 14U AA coach Kathy heim earlier edged the Jr. Kings 8-7 in a shootout McGarrigle said. “To build a development system after losing its opening game to the Alaska Oilers and have them win is pretty special. in a shootout. “The girls at the AA level have been so competi16U AAA: The Jr. Ducks bounced back from tive and worked so hard at developing. Coach Dani an opening loss to the Alaska Oilers to run the taAhumada has done a great job with the 16U AAs.” ble, ultimately defeating the Oilers 6-3 in the final. The host San Jose Jr. Sharks captured the 19U Jackson Niedermayer scored two power-play AA title. goals, Benjamin Biester added two third-period 14U AA: The Lady Ducks overcame an opening goals, and Timothy Marchant and Joseph Harloss to the Washington Wild to win four in a row, the guindeguy added goals for the Jr. Ducks, who last of which was a 3-2 decision over the Anchorage overcame eight penalties. North Stars in the final. Maddie Lalonde’s goal at 15U AAA: The Alaska Oilers scored four 13:17 was the difference for Anaheim, which also third-period goals to defeat the Jr. Sharks 4-2. got goals from Bryce Fleming and Reese Suna- The Anaheim Lady Ducks captured the 14U AAA Pacific District championship, San Jose got goals from Philip Collard and Max needing a decisive Game 3 to bounce the San Jose Jr. Sharks. da in the first period. Scott. 14U AAA: Sara Ito-Bagshaw scored two pow- regulation. Anaheim won an elimination game in the sec14U AAA: The Jr. Kings capped a dominant tournaer-play goals and Claire Ghantous added a third-peri- ond game, 2-0, to give itself a chance to reach the final. ment with an 8-0 victory over the Anchorage North Stars. od tally to lift the Lady Ducks to a 3-0 victory over the Jr. 19U AA: The Jr. Sharks avenged an earlier loss to the Blake Simmons and Paul Minnehan scored two Sharks in the decisive game of the best-of-three series. Alaska All Stars by shutting them out 3-0 in the final. Ev- goals apiece and Noah Alvarez, Andre Gasseau, Ty The LDs won the opener 5-1 before San Jose took Game elyne Blais-Savoie scored all three goals and Ria Ste- Murchison and Riley Ruh added tallies. L.A. had 20-2 2, 2-1. vens added two assists for San Jose. goal differential before its 4-2 semifinal win over the Jr. 16U AA: Taylor Freestone scored two goals and The Lady Ducks’ 19U AAA and Women’s C teams Ducks.


‘The Time Is Now’ LA Lions program continuing to help grow the girls game in California, Western United States

programs that pop up, the more we can bring out those girls and ultimately make California and the Pacific District one of the most competitive out there.” t’s been well-documented that the game of hockey is growing at a rapid pace across Pizzuto added that the Lions have blossomed from a small group a little more the country. than two years ago to seven full teams for the 2018-19 season. On the West Coast, hockey is booming, especially at the girls and women’s levels. “By the time the Lions program was announced in November 2015, there were The LA Lions are a perfect example of that growth, continuing to prosper in three tournament-only teams created from that initial 8U team,” said Pizzuto. “They its third season as an official program. This year, the Lions fielded practiced together once a week and attended 2-3 tournaments toteams at 8U, 10U, 12U and 16U, in addition to a 14U gether. The next season, the program had grown enough tournament-only team and a women’s adult team. where the 8U, 10U and 12U teams were able to function Megan Rivera co-founded the Lions with Becki full time. Winckler and said her initial vision is coming to fruition. “I see the Lions continuing to grow based on the location “When I started the program, I wrote it into the overwe are in, the success we are having in terms of support we all vision that I wanted the program to sustain itself by are getting from the LA Kings and the Jr. Kings, and the numgrowing from the bottom, that is, from the Lil Kings prober of girls who are coming out of in-house programs and the gram and LA-area in-house programs, as well as USA Lil Kings program.” Hockey ‘Try Hockey for Free’ days,” said Rivera, who Next season, the Lions plan to ice teams at 8U, 10U, two played NCAA Division I hockey at Boston College and teams at 12U, 14U Tier II, 16U Tier II and 19U Tier II. is now the Lions 16U associate coach and organization “Our growth rate has been pretty insane,” said Rivera. “It’s goalie coach. “I did research on the Lil Kings program when a big deal. It seems like only a small handful of programs in the I was drafting up the plan for sustainability for the Lions. The whole state of California have been able to successfully operate in Lil Kings program, on average, puts about 200 girls on the ice the long term. So every day, month, year that we continue to grow per year. Assuming hockey sticks for half of them – obviously, feels like such a win. Having more programs means better competiyou hope it’s more and maybe it is, but let’s say half – you have a tion and less kids leaving to play elsewhere.” hundred new girls playing hockey every year. The coaching within the Lions program is also second to none, as Ri“The growth of the Lions is vera and Pizzuto are joined by Bill huge for girls hockey,” Winckler Mendes, Adam O’Neill, Casidadded. “It’s great for LA famihe Kunichika, Dimitri Voulelies to have an alternative when likas, Richard Gomez, Kelly it comes to hockey. As we know, Lynch and Christen Keogh. girls participation in hockey Kunichika also played NCAA D-I drops off significantly at the 14U hockey at Rochester Institute of age and having a local program Technology and currently plays for is helping to keep some of these the U.S. women’s national roller girls playing longer and commithockey team. ting more to the sport. Beyond Rivera said Pizzuto is of the youth hockey, if we continue to utmost quality when it comes to grow and the West Coast sees coaching. an influx of girls programs, col“In my opinion, Tori is one of leges will have to start having the best coaches I’ve ever seen,” teams for these girls to play for. It Rivera said. “When I reflect on my will happen if we all work togethown youth hockey days and the er. It’s a progression of one thing coaches I had who were a posileading to the next. These are all tive influence on me, Tori has all of pieces of a puzzle. The time is those qualities. She was born to now. It’s a great time to be a girl.” coach. I get jealous because it just The Lions started in 2015 The U.S. women’s gold medal-winning Olympic hockey team stopped by the STAPLES Center Feb. 26 to drop the cere- comes so naturally to her.” monial first puck at the LA Kings game and also spent time with the LA Lions during a special meet-and-greet session. when Winckler and Steve YoveBack on Feb. 26, the U.S. tich worked together to put together a team of eight-year-old girls who partici- Olympic gold medal-winning women’s hockey team made a stop in the City of Angels pated in that year’s Labor Day Tinseltown Tournament at Toyota Sports Center. and dropped the ceremonial puck drop at the Kings-Vegas Golden Knights game. Rivera coached that team, which is where she and Winckler met. The team includ- The Kings set up a meet and greet for all Lions players, and it was phenomenal. ed Winckler’s daughter, Lily. They placed third out of seven teams in an all-boys “To have Olympians meet our girls in the same room at STAPLES Center where division. we made the announcement to our families about our new LA Lions program was “That tournament essentially got the program on its feet,” said Rivera. “I swear, surreal,” said Winckler. “If you would have asked Megan and I two and a half years after that, overnight we went from those 10 kids to 30.” ago if we would’ve anticipated being a stop on the gold medal tour, we would not have Afterward, Winckler hit the ground running and began finding other girls who believed it. We sat in that room and cried that night together. were looking for a place to play. She took this project to Rivera, who put in the Moving forward, there are nothing but positive vibes building up with the Lions. work on the business end to create an entity where this program could exist. “One of our older kids just went on a college visit and is narrowing down her deWinckler, who is now the coordinator of managers and fundraising for the Lions, cision,” said Rivera. “I mean, that is the end goal. It’s the light at the end of the tunnel and Rivera felt that the demand to start a program out of El Segundo was there, for these kids and all of the hard work they put in. The first kid who commits to play so they worked hard to make sure it would stick. college hockey from this program will be a very big deal.” Tori Pizzuto is another key cog in the Lions’ success and is the 16U head “My own unique story happened with an older girl that is a new player to our club coach and organization coordinator, in addition to serving as the ball hockey co- this season,” added Winckler. “She sought me out in the parking lot and wanted to ordinator for the Los Angeles Kings. introduce herself to me. I shook her hand and told her it was nice to meet her and how “A ton of girls stop playing hockey in California because they would otherwise happy I was to have her as a Lion. She said to me, ‘I am so honored to meet you. All have to drive too far,” Pizzuto said. “And while a good amount of them still drive my life I have heard the phrase ‘grow the game,’ but I am actually talking to someone long distances, each program that can stand on its feet makes it better for girls that is doing it. Thank you for starting the Lions.’ We said our goodbyes and I got in who want to play. There’s no doubt that girls want to play hockey out here, but my car and cried. I still cry. sometimes the convenience factor prohibits that for a lot of families. The more “That’s what this is all about.”

By Matt Mackinder



California Rubber Hockey Magazine


Good as gold: Barnes helps Team USA to Olympic glory By Chris Bayee


our gold medals and counting. The most recent one, however, carries the most weight for Cayla Barnes, who won it on Feb. 22 with Team USA at the Olympic Games in PyeongChang, South Korea. “It’s incredible, something I’ll never forget,” she said. “It was such a cool experience, not only for us but for everyone who watched.” The former Anaheim Jr. Ducks, Lady Ducks, L.A. Jr. Kings and L.A. Selects player took a regular shift on defense and earned some power-play time for the Team USA squad that beat Canada 3-2 in a compelling matchup that required a shootout to determine the outcome. “There were a lot of emotions (during the gold-medal game),” said the Eastvale native. “The building was going crazy. Even when Canada scored twice to go ahead 2-1, we remained positive. The team really stuck together and going into overtime, everyone was loose, like, ‘We got this.’” After four consecutive losses to Canada in Olympic gold-medal games, how was that possible? “Everyone brought a bit to the table to contribute to that confidence,” Barnes said. “Our leaders did an incredible job. Everyone felt calm and had faith in each other.” It was the first gold for the U.S. women since the 1998 Games, when Angela Ruggeiro, then 18 and now a member of the Hockey Hall of Fame and the International Olympic Committee, became the first California-born and –trained woman (Panorama City) to win an Olympic gold medal. Just as Ruggeiro was a generation ago, Barnes, at 19, was the youngest member of Team USA. The com-

parisons don’t end there. Both are defensemen. And past two years. both will end up playing their college hockey in Boston She attended a U.S. Women’s National Team tryout – Ruggeiro starred at Harvard, and Barnes will resume camp, but was sent home last year. She then enrolled her career at Boston College next at Boston College, where she season. actually played five games before The impact of having a Caliher country called her back to the fornia-developed player reach the team’s training site in Tampa, Fla., pinnacle of women’s hockey likely in October. will be substantial for the grassEven then, a spot on the Olymroots girls game, Lady Ducks propic team wasn’t assured. gram director and coach Kathy “I thought I could be considMcGarrigle said. ered some day, but you never “Every four years, the stage of know,” she said earlier this year. the Winter Olympics really puts a “I wasn’t expecting it this early. I spotlight on women’s hockey, but, thought I’d go through college and much like in 1998, winning a gold have a good shot in 2022. medal and a California-grown play“It was an exciting turn of er being on the team will hopefully events.” have an even greater impact,” McAnd one that allowed her Garrigle said. to join Ruggeiro (1998, 2002, “Cayla has been a standout 2006 and 2010) and Huntington from an early age and it has been Beach’s Chanda Gunn (2006) an amazing feeling to be a small as California natives to represent part of her journey. I hope Team Eastvale native Cayla Barnes was part of the Unit- the U.S. at the Olympics. USA’s gold medal inspires many ed States’ gold medal-winning women’s Olympic Barnes and her teammates new young players in the West to team last month in PyeongChang, South Korea. returned to a hero’s welcome at get started, and I think it will.” various stops across the United States, starting in Los Barnes played in all five games and compiled a cu- Angeles. mulative plus-3 rating. She averaged nearly 15 minutes “They’re all pretty special memories,” she said. “Goof ice time per game. ing on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, dropping the puck at Barnes’ journey to this most recent gold came af- an L.A. Kings game, that was a really good stop.” ter she became the first three-time gold medalist at the Barnes’ next stop includes training and spending Women’s Under-18 World Championships last year. time with her family, as well as cheering on Boston ColShe was named the tournament’s Top Defenseman the lege in the women’s NCAA tournament.



California Rubber Hockey Magazine


OneHockey hosting All-American tournaments this summer By Kevin Conway


ummertime in southern California, where the living is easy and OneHockey is rocking. The world’s recognized No. 1 hockey tournament group will be celebrating both Memorial Day and Fourth of July weekends this year by hosting two spectacular five-game-guaranteed events in its home state. With the abundance of summer fun activities away from the rink that this part of the Golden State offers, OneHockey has already registered dozens of clubs from Canada and Europe as well as across the United States for both holidays, but is still reserving space for local teams as well. “Those teams can’t wait to get here,” said Sebastien Fortier, founder and CEO of OneHockey. “Spending a long American holiday weekend along the California coast is a great tradition everybody wants to experience. But we’re also expecting more teams from here in California, Arizona and Colorado to be joining us to make both tournaments a big holiday celebration. We’re going to show all of them what the OneHockey way is all about.” The OneHockey California Memorial Day Tournament will run May 25-28 and feature players at the Midget (high school varsity and JV), Bantam, Pee Wee, Squirt and Mite (half ice) age groups for the AA and A levels. Pee Wee, Squirt and Mite divisions are also being formed at the B level. Just six weeks later, the OneHockey California Fourth of July event will take place the weekend after Independence Day, July 6-8. This tourney is geared for AAA and AA squads at the 16U (2002-03) through the 2009 age

groups. Both OneHockey extravaganzas will be mainly based at the popular Icetown Rink in Riverside, while some games are likely to be scheduled at its sister facility in Carlsbad. The Icetown Rink in both communities are year-round arenas owned and operated by the NHL’s L.A. Kings and offer everything from youth and adult hockey to figure skating, sled hockey and broomball. Players from Southern California as well as the southwest corner of the country are certainly familiar with both twin-sheet locations. Fortier is even offering teams the opportunity to request to play all or some of their games at the Carlsbad Icetown in order to be closer to the incredible beaches of southern California. In fact, the entire region surrounding both rinks is renowned for its waterfront as much as it is its scenic, recreational and cultural attractions. “We’ve waited a long time to break into California, so we want to make sure all our families have time to explore this incredible part of the country,” said Fortier, the Laguna Hills resident who started OneHockey in 2003. “That’s why we’re going to be holding tournaments in California pretty much every holiday weekend.” OneHockey was initially established as a spring and summer tournament company focusing on the finest competition and in-game entertainment, but Fortier

now runs the 25-plus international events organization year-round from his home office. Not only does the former Montreal Canadiens prospect organize and operate tourneys across the USA each year, he has even hosted several OneHockey events in his native Canada as well as in Europe. This August, Fortier has also arranged for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to play in Moscow thanks to a new partnership with Vladislav Tretiak, current president of the Ice Hockey Federation of Russia and the former legendary goaltender of the Soviet Red Army national squad. “The OneHockey Experience is spanning the globe now,” Fortier said. “The way we spoil our players and families with a festive atmosphere at so many destination places is a secret no more.” Besides providing the most entertaining events the industry has to offer, OneHockey intends to make history next Christmas school vacation as Fortier’s group embarks on setting a Guinness World Record for hosting the largest tournament ever. OneHockey is partnering with the Michigan Amateur Hockey Association to hold the biggest tourney the sport has ever seen during the Holiday Invite 2018, which will be scattered at arenas across the Great Lakes State. Any California or southwest youth hockey programs interested in being part of this world-record hockey happening should register now at

Santa Margarita repeats as CAHA high school state champs The Eagles’ 2017-18 roster includes forwards Brian Armijo, Joseph Felicicchia, Maxwell Sullivan, Taylor Loh, Brendan Williams, Will Howhannesian, Jesse Logan Orsini, Nicholas Gluck, Marcus Kim, Daniel Doss, Dylan Hernandez-Ramirez, Leevi Selanne, John Mulvihill II, Aidan Casey, Nicolas Mauthe and Tyler Badame; defensemen Jerrett Overland, Brian Mathis, Jacob Makowecki, Ryan Parkinson, Kevin Peck, Michael Allee, Hunter Voyles and Ryan John-

Mauthe led the team with 20 regular-season goals and 10 assists, while Selanne, Williams, Orsini and Felicicchia hen Santa Margarita Catholic High School in Ranalso found the back of the net 10 or more times. Taylor cho Santa Margarita won back-to-back CAHA high logged the most minutes in goal, recording a perfect 13-0 school state titles in 2012 and 2013, members of the currecord with 116 saves and a miniscule 1.08 goals-against rent Eagles team were in junior high school and elemenaverage. tary school. Next on their radar for the Eagles is the goal that has Now those players can also call themselves two-time been at the top of their list all season - winning the USA CAHA champs, as the Eagles followed up their 2017 title Hockey High School Nationals, held March 23-26 in by skating to a 7-3 win over Orange Lutheran at THE Plymouth, Minn., which they qualified for by virtue of RINKS-Anaheim ICE in the state championship game their CAHA state championship. March 4. Last season, the Eagles advanced to the champi“The team played very well,” said Eagles coach onship game but came home without the trophy after a Craig Johnson. “We came in with a lot of intensity one-goal defeat to Pennsylvania-based Bayard Rustin and focus, and we executed. The kids had the goal at High School. In 2013, they became the first California the beginning of the year that they wanted to be state team to win a national championship and have played champs, and they were able to achieve their first goal.” in the title game twice since then. The Eagles opened the state playoffs on March 2 “We played well last year - we got some bad with a 4-0 victory over JSerra. On March 3, they topbounces early in the game and battled back, but it just pled Orange Lutheran 5-0. They skated past Bellarmdidn’t work out for us,” Johnson said. “It was very disine Prep 6-2 later in the day to secure their spot in appointing, but I think this year the kids are prepared the championship game. Orange Lutheran reached to go back and make the most of their opportunities.” the title tilt with a 2-1 record in round-robin play. They Santa Margarita Catholic High School has repeated as CAHA state champions One of the first teams to join the Anaheim Ducks after downing Orange Lutheran 7-3 on March 4 at THE RINKS-Anaheim ICE. topped Bellarmine 5-4 in the opening game, then fell High School Hockey League, Santa Margarita quickto Santa Margarita 5-0 and rebounded to beat JSerra 3-1 son; and goalies Brandon Yamasaki, Fred Taylor II, ly developed a winning tradition, and has carried that on. on March 3. Jacob Rossi and Megan Warren. Kaelin Groon, Jes- The Eagles, founded in 2009, won back-to-back CAHA Perhaps the most impressive part of the Eagles win- se Orsini and Kevin Skule serve as assistant coaches high school state titles in 2012 and 2013 and now have ning the state title for a second consecutive year is the to Johnson. secured consecutive titles again. roster turnover from last season this this campaign. “It says a lot about our program and the culture that the During the regular season, the Eagles outscored their “We lost eight or nine seniors after last season,” John- opponents 119-17 en route to a perfect 16-0 campaign. kids have helped create,” Johnson said. son said. “But we have great leadership from our seniors They toppled Orange Lutheran, their eventual championIn addition, St. John Bosco won the 2A state champithis year, and we have some really good younger guys as ship game opponent, three times by a margin of six goals onship, 5-4 over Capistrano United, and will also head to well.” or more. Minnesota later this month. By Greg Ball



Spring, summer at Ice Center has something for everyone Justin Hubert said. “That, combined with the weekly goalie-only ice sessions, allows the goalies to work with me much more closely than can happen during the regular season.” Any S3 registered player may also decide to play on the popular Memorial Day Weekend tournament teams. All registrations for the tournament team are accepted. Players will be organized by skill level from S3 Clinics in addition to a few free team placement skates that help coaches place similarly skilled players together.

separate facility very nearby for off-ice training called Hockey X-Training. There is a mini-rink with synthetpring is coming – and quickly – to the Ice Center ic ice used for power skate training and goalie work, of Cupertino. weight and cardio training areas and a shooting lane, The sixth annual spring/summer hockey program akin to a driving range on a golf course, where players kicks off April 16 with the start of the S3 Clinics. Other can probably shoot more pucks in one session than spring/summer events through Aug. 1 include high-inthey shoot on the ice during the entire hockey season. tensity training, pre-tryout camp, Memorial Day WeekThe Cougars and their Tier hockey partner Golden end tournament teams and the high school/Midget State Elite (GSE) use a path of progress development skate. method. Potential hockey players can start off in the Based on customer feedback of what was wantLittle Sharks program at the Ice Center of Cupertino ed during the spring and summer months between and/or the Little Hockey Basic Training (LHBT) the NorCal hockey seasons, the S3 Clinics were classes to get started on their ice hockey journey. developed to focus on specific hockey skills in an After progressing through LHBT, there is the Couimmersive environment. This is taught in three onegar Rookie league, where players fresh from the hour long sessions, held on consecutive evenings LHBT class get their first taste of team play. The from Monday through Wednesday during a week. rookie league includes one practice and one game The Ice Center offers 12 weeks of S3 Clinics from per week, playing against other Cougar Rookie April 16-Aug. 1. League teams in a fun, teaching environment. There During the NorCal season, coaches are chalare also options to include more on-ice time at the lenged to teach in this type of immersive environdiscretion of the player’s family. ment because there simply isn’t enough time when Following the rookie league, the Ice Center ofthe focus has to be on many team-related funcfers a full array of NorCal travel teams for every age tions. But during the spring and summer, that can level from six through 18. This is a more competitive change. Over the past six years of S3 classes, the environment and requires more dedication, practicIce Center has tweaked the program to be very proing multiple times per week and playing both home ductive. Hockey X-Training, near the Ice Center of Cupertino, boasts a mini-rink with and away games throughout Northern California. California Cougars strength and conditioning synthetic ice used for power skate training and goalie work, weight and It’s not for everyone, but it’s open to anyone who coach Kevin Nathan: “I was all in from Day 1, but I cardio training areas and a shooting lane. wants to try out for a team. Tryouts start June 1. didn’t expect the results to come so quickly.” In addition to the 12 weeks of S3 Clinics, there is From potential players brand new to the sport to Like their position player counterparts, S3 also of- also a week of high-intensity training in mid-May and current NorCal and GSE players, the Ice Center of Cufers goalies a unique opportunity to get specific goalie five sessions of pre-tryout camp in late May. Complete pertino spring/summer programs have something for training. info on these, as well as all the programs mentioned everyone. “I get an opportunity to talk with a goalie one on above, can be found on Visit for full details and one as things are happening,” Cougars goalie coach Unique to the Ice Center of Cupertino, there is a registration information.

By Mike Benesh



California Rubber Hockey Magazine


LAKHSHL alumni help UCSB to PCHA college championship By Greg Ball


hen players in the L.A. Kings High School Hockey League (LAKHSHL) graduate from high school, it doesn’t necessarily mean they also have to leave behind their days playing hockey. In the case of the Santa Barbara Royals, four former players have continued their hockey careers playing on the ACHA team at UC Santa Barbara. Former Royals on the Gauchos’ roster this season included forwards Collin Del Bonis and Chris Ewasiuk, defenseman Emmett Rupert and goalie Will Hahn. Additionally, Demetri Strategos joined USCB’s squad this season after playing for the Kern County Knights in the LAKHSHL. “It has been amazing to have this many former Kings league players on our roster this season,” said Hahn, a freshman who helped lead the Royals to consecutive league titles in his two years with the team and was a twotime winner of the league’s Rogie Vachon Goalie Award. “It’s high-level hockey and we all work incredibly hard.” The Gauchos had a memorable season, as they captured their first Pacific Collegiate Hockey Association championship, wrapping up the title in Lake Tahoe on Feb. 19. They topped Santa Clara University in a shootout. Immediately after the title game, a handful of players sprinted from the rink to the shores of Lake Tahoe and enjoyed a celebratory leap into the frigid water - an experi-

ence they won’t soon forget. “It was absolutely incredible winning the championship,” Hahn said. “I brought along my video camera and got some great footage of them jumping in the lake - it was a lot of fun.” The fact that so many players have moved from the Kings’ high school league to UCSB isn’t lost on those running the league. Emma Tani, the Kings’ coordinator of league and rinks, Hockey Development, played college hockey at Trinity College in Connecticut, and said she’s pleased

to see players from the LAKHSHL getting opportunities to continue playing the game they love. “I am very proud that players from our league are finding success in college hockey,” Tani said. Added Stratgeos: “I never thought I would play hockey again at a competitive level after high school, but once I found out UCSB had a team, I didn’t want to pass up that opportunity.” While some of the players are content to skate for the Gauchos all four years in college, others are looking to advance their careers away from the California coast. Most

of them, however, said they’re happy to be able to stay close to home while still playing hockey, and they have a personal investment in the success of the sport in the area, which to the surprise of many outsiders has become a hockey hotbed. “I think it was great that we were all able to stay close to home and be able to continue playing competitive hockey,” Del Bonis said. “UCSB was our best opportunity with those two aspirations in mind.” Rupert hopes to use his experience with UCSB’s team as a springboard to opportunities to play Division I college hockey on the east coast or in the ECHL or AHL. He said he is a big supporter of hockey in the Santa Barbara area and after his playing days, he’d like to contribute to the passionate hockey community in the area. “Teaching the game that I have been playing for 16 years to kids would be amazing, knowing that I was able to contribute to their lives in a beneficial way,” Rupert said. A big part of growing the game in Southern California will be dependent on the success of the LAKHSHL (as well as that of the Anaheim Ducks High School Hockey League), and former players recognize how important it is. “I want to see the league continue to grow and thrive,” Hahn said. “The more the sport grows, the more interest there will be and the more great hockey there will be in the area.”



Jr. Kings run the table, win seven Tier I state titles By Brian McDonough


or the Los Angeles Jr. Kings, winning all four California Amateur Hockey Association (CAHA) Tier I state championships at the 18U, 16U, 15U and 14U AAA levels over the first weekend of February marked a crowning achievement in itself. Running the table again a month later in the 13U, 12U and 11U AAA age divisions proved historic. In capturing all seven Tier I state championships, the Jr. Kings laid claim to the unprecedented feat of winning every age division at the event in a single season. And, given the ever-growing depth and strength of Tier I hockey across the state, it’s an accolade the program understandably holds in high regard. “It’s quite an accomplishment, to say the least, and one we’re extremely proud to celebrate on a number of levels,” said Jr. Kings general manager of hockey operations Nick Vachon, who also serves as head coach of the club’s state champion 12U AAA team. “Obviously, you need a lot of things to go your way and a little luck to win every division - especially seven of them - but in the end all of our teams dug deep at pivotal moments over the course of their weekends and all got the job done, which says a lot about our players’ resolve and commitment of our coaching staffs.” One of the more dramatic finishes came at the 13U tournament, where it took two overtimes for the Shawn Pitcher-coached Jr. Kings to upend the Anaheim Jr. Ducks in the championship game 2-1. “It was a hard-fought few days, no question, and

we were fortunate to come out on top,” said Pitcher. “Weekends like these put the kids in a lot of pressure-packed situations over a short period of time, and to see our boys respond they way they did when it counted most was special.” With their banner-raising performances at states, the 18U (coached by Barry Dreger), 16U (Jack Bowkus), 15U (Jaro Modry) and 14U AAA (Jeff

The Los Angeles Jr. Kings’ 13U AAA team was one of seven from the organization to celebrate a title at this year’s CAHA Tier I State Championships. It’s the first time in history a program has won every age division at the event in a single season.

Turcotte) teams all punched their tickets to the Pacific District Championships, which were showcased earlier this month in San Jose (states marked the end of the season for the 13U, 12U and Jeremy Daughaday-coached 11U AAA squads). At districts, the Jr. Kings’ 14U team cruised to the title in its division earning a berth to next month’s USA


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Hockey Youth Nationals (see more in the state’s Pacific District champions on Page 5). “To win states and then regionals is exciting, and we can’t wait for the test in front of us at nationals,” said Turcotte. “Our boys have worked extremely hard to earn this opportunity, and I know full well they plan to make the most of it.” A number of other teams within the Jr. Kings organization also held high hopes as the postseason commenced, including its Maik Tatavosian-led Pee Wee AA1 team, which advanced through Tier II Playdowns in February to earn a berth to this month’s CAHA Tier II State Championships. What’s more, five A, BB and B teams - Pee Wee A1 (coached by Chad Demers) and BB (Stephane Desjardins) and Squirt A2 (James Gasseau), BB1 (Jeff Bain) and B (Chet Carlbom) - all finished in the top eight in the regular season in their respective divisions to qualify for the Southern California Amateur Hockey Association playoffs. “What’s most exciting from a club perspective is that we’re experiencing success at all levels; not just with the older, Tier I age groups,” said Vachon. “And that bodes well for us moving forward both from a player development standpoint as well as how we compete on the local, regional and national stages. “But, in the end, what’s most important is the growth and maturation of our kids; the banners and trophies are a byproduct of their commitment to becoming better hockey players and better people.”


Sharks Alumni Foundation to make a difference in NorCal By Matt Mackinder


he San Jose Sharks are one of the newer teams in the NHL, but that hasn’t stopped the organization from starting the Sharks Alumni Foundation and moving forward with giving back to the Bay Area community. The idea for the foundation first started during the NHL Stadium Series game at Levi’s Stadium in 2015 between the Sharks and Los Angeles Kings and picked up momentum last spring when former Sharks defenseman Douglas Murray was appointed president. “I started spending more time in the area and I thought it made all the sense in the world to start up the foundation,” said Murray. “The Sharks are such a strong brand and we have always been appreciative of the community and all they have done for us as players over the years. I started getting involved and planning the process and it all took on a life of its own. “We started getting things done and then all of a sudden, I was president.” The San Jose Jr. Sharks youth program, which has boys and girls teams, will also be involved with the foundation as many ex-Sharks players now serve as coaches in the Jr. Sharks organization, including Jr. Sharks hockey director Curtis Brown. “As an alumni of the Sharks, we want to expand Sharks territory through the foundation,” said Brown. “It’s in my DNA, and really on all levels, whether it’s

cheering for the big club, giving back and helping the community or skating with the youth. I think it’s great to get this alumni foundation off the ground and get more alumni involved at all levels.

“When I got back here in 2011 and started working with the Jr. Sharks, one of the things I’ve always tried to focus on has been getting the alumni involved back in youth hockey. That was important, and you saw guys around the country doing it. These guys know how to play the game and if we can get more of them involved with the kids, it’s only a positive.” Murray noted that while the foundation will be a

way to help out with community-based initiatives, it will also help out former Sharks players who may need some sort of assistance. “We’re all proud Sharks alumni and we all want to be an extension of the Sharks brand,” said Murray. “Our main focus is to raise money for children in the Bay Area so that they can afford to play any sport they enjoy. It’s very expensive to play sports these days and we’ll support those kids with participation costs and equipment costs, but we won’t just limit ourselves there. We recently played a benefit game in Santa Rosa for the families that needed assistance from the fires there. We’ll get behind lots of different causes in the Bay Area community. “Also, and a lot of people don’t realize this, but when you go from being a professional athlete to the second part of your life, that’s something where we want to make sure we take care of our own and help out guys that are maybe going through a tough time, that’ll be an important part as well.” This summer, the Sharks Alumni Foundation will partner with the Aubri Brown Club, a foundation Brown and his wife, Ami, started in 2005 upon the passing of their infant daughter, Aubri, to support families that have lost children. “NHL alumni and connections from around the sports world have really come out the past 11 years to support my wife and I with this cause, and now, it’s super cool that we can work with the Sharks Alumni Foundation because it’s a positive on all levels,” Brown said. “It’s uniting people who are involved in both of those wonderful movements.”


PICTURE PERFECT Team captains from both the Ontario Reign (Brett Sutter) and Eisbären Berlin (Andre Rankel) accompanied LA Kings president Luc Robitaille, AHL president-CEO Dave Andrews and Eisbären managing director Peter John Lee, along with the Reign’s Hero of the Night, 13-year-old John Martinez, for the ceremonial puck drop before the International Frozen Friendly exhibition game Feb. 13 at Citizens Business Bank Arena.Photo/Jessica Harsen Photography

The San Diego Jr. Gulls’ 10U B squad came away with the Squirt Division championship banner Feb. 19, winning the OneHockey tournament with an 8-3 win over the Penguins tournament team from the Ice Plex Escondido.

The Tri-Valley Blue Devils’ 14U A team won the 14U AA division championship Feb. 19 at the California State Games, which were held in San Diego over Presidents Day weekend.

The Valencia Jr. Flyers captured the Squirt B championship at the Phoenix Presidents’ Day Invitational, wrapping up with a 4-0 win over the LA Jr. Kings on Feb. 19.

The Anaheim Jr. Ducks Kohn team captured the Pee Wee AA championship Feb. 19 at the Phoenix Presidents’ Day Invitational, defeating the Spokane Jr. Chiefs 2-1 in the title game.

Logan Afifi was the official torch bearer for the three teams from the Toyota Sports Center that participated in the annual California State Games in San Diego over Presidents Day weekend.

The Valencia Jr. Flyers won the Squirt A Washington Division title at the Phoenix Presidents’ Day Invitational, culminating with a 10-2 win Feb. 19 over the Arizona Hockey Union.

The Capital Thunder was victorious at the Wine Country Face Off, winning the Junior Varsity High School Division on Feb. 19 at Snoopy’s Home Ice in Santa Rosa by a 2-1 final over the Santa Rosa Flyers.

San Diego Gulls players, coaches, team mascot Gulliver and the Gulls Girls went bowling to benefit the San Diego Gulls Foundation on March 5 at Mira Mesa Lanes.

The San Diego Jr. Gulls’ 8U A team brought home the hardware after winning its division at the 5th Annual Orange County Presidents’ Day Hockey Festival on Feb. 19.

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California Rubber Hockey Magazine



Ducks’ ‘Learn to Play’ program hits 10,000 participants By THE RINKS Staff


hen Anaheim Ducks owners Henry and Susan Samueli bought the Anaheim Ducks back in 2005, not only did they want to bring a Stanley Cup to Anaheim, they also wanted to establish the then-Mighty Ducks of Anaheim as a staple in the Orange County community. Thirteen years later, the Ducks have a Stanley Cup victory, and hockey has significantly grown throughout Orange County and Southern California. When the Ducks became the first California-based team to win the Stanley Cup in 2007, hockey participation was still low in Southern California. According to USA Hockey, the state of California only had 2,917 registered youth hockey players under the age of 10. Now, compare that number to the latest report in 2016-17, which saw California’s youth hockey numbers grow to 5,942 registered ten-andunder players – more than twice the amount it was 10 years before. While the increase in numbers can be attributed to the multiple Stanley Cups that have been brought to the region in the last 11 years, as well as the creation of the American Hockey League’s Pacific Division, the biggest contributing factor is clearly the dedication of the local

NHL teams’ efforts to introduce the sport of hockey to their communities. One of these programs is the Anaheim Ducks “Learn to Play” program, sponsored by Ducks players Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry. Hockey has traditionally had higher barriers to entry than other sports, such as basketball or soccer. For starters, in order to play hockey, you first have to learn how to

skate. Couple that with the high prices of hockey equipment, and it is easier to understand why youth hockey numbers have been lower than other sports, especially in sunny Southern California where backyard rinks are few and far between. However, the four-week “Learn to Play” program offers first-time hockey players a chance to take the ice, receive coaching on the fundamentals of ice skating and


California Rubber Hockey Magazine

hockey, and borrow a full set of hockey equipment, all at no cost to the participants. This program has helped eliminate some of the sport’s barriers to entry and made it accessible to everyone, from children to adults. The program has also spurred an excitement for playing hockey in Southern California, reaching its 10,000th participant as the calendar turned over to 2018. To celebrate the amazing milestone of introducing 10,000 participants to the sport of hockey through their renowned program, the Ducks held “Learn to Play Night” at the Honda Center on Tuesday, March 6, as they battled the Washington Capitals. Throughout the game, former “Learn to Play” participants were recognized. These participants had the opportunity to experience Zamboni rides, joining Dawn Wright on the ice for the national anthem, and taking part in intermission games on the Honda Center ice. The night was capped off with two VIP participants heading down to the Ducks locker room for a special meet and greet with the players who help fund the program, Getzlaf and Perry. Hopefully, it is not long before 10,000 more people learn to play the great game of hockey.

ANAHEIM JR. DUCKS Jr. Ducks Pee Wees make most of their two weeks in Quebec By Chris Bayee


he Quebec International Pee-Wee Hockey Tournament was more than three games for the Anaheim Jr. Ducks. While the 2005 Jr. Ducks fared well in their tournament games, going 2-1 in the Pee Wee AAA Division with only a 2-0 loss to the Buffalo Jr. Sabres, the experience was so much more. “What an experience for the kids,” said Jr. Ducks coach Sandy Gasseau. “The new Videotron Center is a beautiful facility, and this is an amazing, amazing tournament. “All of the players were billeted and got to learn about a different culture and language. Families billet more than 50 of the 120 teams, and a lot of those families take two weeks off to do it. “Talk about a love of the game. Our billet captain, Gil Lamoureux, has been doing it for 18 years, and he told me he couldn’t wait for next year’s tournament.” The Jr. Ducks outscored their opponents 11-3 in their tournament games, beating Detroit Compuware 7-1 and the Boston Jr. Terriers 4-0 before the loss to Buffalo. “We did really well,” Gasseau said. “At times during the tournament, the goals were pouring in, and at other times they weren’t.” The players also played several exhibition games against teams from the Czech Republic, Switzerland, Montreal, Quebec City, Ontario and New York. In between, there were plenty of activities, from visiting a snow park to dog sledding. Jr. Ducks skaters in Quebec included Joshua Armbruster, Zeev Bulum, Francois Devilliers, Weichen Ding, Talen Garcia, Christian Kim, Philippe LaLonde, Lukas McCloskey-Meier, Mason Miller, Avry Shaw, Ethan Woolcott, Jason Zaccari, Zack Zhang and Nikita Zozulia. The team’s goalies were Miles Roberts and Sky Willer. Patrick Angeles assisted Gasseau, and Janine Ghantous managed the team.

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California Rubber Hockey Magazine

NEVADA REPORT Golden Knights scout Workman Discussions stall, but Reno still ‘simply loved the game of hockey’ hopeful for ECHL hockey team By Matt Mackinder

By Matt Mackinder


he Vegas Golden Knights have been the talk of the NHL this season, but had to take a step back recently when one of their own lost a short and courageous battle with cancer. Mark Workman passed away Feb. 14 at the age of 47 in his home state of Minnesota surrounded by family. He joined the Golden Knights in the fall of 2016 after serving as associate head coach at NCAA Division I Robert Morris University. “Today is an incredibly sad day for the entire Vegas Mark Workman Golden Knights family and especially our hockey operations staff,” said Golden Knights GM George McPhee. “Mark Workman was a tremendous scout, coach and an even better person. He played an integral role within our amateur scouting team and was instrumental in our preparation leading up to our inaugural amateur draft last summer. He had a keen eye for talent, a great sense of player evaluation and simply loved the game of hockey. We were all privileged to work with Mark and call him a friend. We send our deepest condolences to the entire Workman family and to all those who were fortunate to know him. “He will be missed dearly.” Workman began his tenure as an assistant coach at Robert Morris in 2009 and remained on the staff through the end of the 2015-16 season. During Workman’s tenure at Robert Morris, the Colonials reached their first NCAA tournament after winning the Atlantic Hockey postseason championship in 2014. “Mark was loved by all at Robert Morris,” RMU head coach Derek Schooley said. “Mark was one of the good guys in the hockey world and affected so many student athletes in a positive way.” His celebration of life will be April 14 in Minnesota.


ack in Dec. 2016, the Reno City Council voted to approve pro hockey in town, to play at the Reno Events Center, starting in the fall of 2018. City council approved a 10-year agreement with the Reno Puck Club in 2016, but that has since fallen apart. While adding pro hockey in Northern Nevada isn’t imminent, Reno mayor Hillary Schieve said it is still a possibility. “While we were excited about the prospect of adding a minor league hockey team in 2018, we also want to make sure that we set the team up for success during their time in Reno,” Reno mayor Hillary Schieve told the Reno Gazette Journal. “Although negotiations have stalled for the time being, our council will continue to look for ways to support the effort of bringing more professional sports teams to our great city.” Ken Lehner, a partner with the Reno Puck Club, wants to bring hockey to Reno along with Larry Leasure, who owns the ECHL’s Idaho Steelheads, but doesn’t sound optimistic. “The RSCVA (Reno-Sparks Convention and Visitor’s Authority) is responsible for booking the Reno Events Center and they do not want to be in the arena management business,” said Lehner to the Gazette Journal. “They do not want to do a deal for a hockey team right now.” Phil DeLone, president-CEO of the RSCVA, added that the biggest roadblock is the financial aspect. “Few wish to undertake the expensive up-front investment on a project that might not deliver the financial returns and the long-term fan base to purchase tickets people are hopeful for,” DeLone told the Gazette Journal. “I am aware the city of Reno has had past discussions with at least one possible ice hockey developer. However, those discussions may have stalled or floundered in part due to the multimillion-dollar start-up investment required, displacement of other business and the absence, thus far, of the delivery of a detailed, written long-term business plan and accompanying financial forecast by the interested party.”

FROM THE TRAINER’S ROOM Let’s look at five key ways that you can recover faster T

Chris Phillips

his time of year brings on the playoffs for many athletes. The stakes are higher, the games are more intense, and a number of games can be played in a short amount of time. The demands on the athlete’s body become higher with less time to recover. This can lead to decreased performance or injury that can change the end result of your season. There are many recovery aids available, but the most important thing is to do what you can to play at your best with what you have available. Many programs can be done

in 15-30 minutes. Use these five simple ways after a game to recover quicker: Jog: A five-minute cool-down jog following games can help rid the muscles of lactic acid that can build up and cause muscle soreness the next day. Foam Roll: Roll out the major muscle groups such as the glutes, IT bands, quadriceps, adductors, hamstrings and calves to diminish muscle spasms. Stretch: Stretching of the same muscle groups can help maintain flexibility to improve performance and reduce the incidence of injuries such as muscle strains. Eat: Consuming a protein-rich food source within 30-60 minutes following activity will help your muscles repair faster. During exercise, the muscle fibers are damaged and protein can help them repair quicker. Ice Bath: Fill the bathtub just high enough to cover your legs with water and ice. The amount of ice may vary depending on tub size and initial water temperature. Typically, 10-20 pounds of ice is sufficient. It should be cold enough that it is a bit uncomfortable. Sit in the bath for 10-15 minutes to help flush lactic acid and other byproducts out of your legs.

Chris Phillips is a certified athletic trainer and strength and conditioning specialist with over 25 years’ experience working with amateur, professional and Olympic athletes. Chris is the owner of Compete Sports Performance and Rehab in Orange County.


Jr. Gulls’ 14U girls team creates history in St. Louis By Matt Mackinder


istory was made over Presidents’ Day weekend in St. Louis as the San Diego Jr. Gulls’ 14U girls team won the St. Louis Gateway Cup tournament – the first-ever tournament win for a Jr. Gulls girls team. And the team did it playing up a division against 16U clubs. Ask head coach Alex Morrison what he thinks of the milestone, though, and he says capturing the banner is simply icing on the cake. “We started this program last season with one team of girls aged 9-12,” said Morrison. “This year, having two teams (14U and 12U), we wanted to give the girls an opportunity to compete and be proud of their accomplishments. For this team to not just win a tournament, but truly develop and grow as hockey players throughout this season, they have been winning all along.” In St. Louis, Morrison said the team had a certain vibe all weekend that culminated with the championship victory on Feb. 19 at the McKendree MetroRecPlex. “There was never a mindset of complacency throughout the weekend,” said Morrison. “We kept talking about being the younger team, the underdogs (our girls, with one exception, are all 2004 birth years), the 13U team playing in 16U. Not until the last few seconds of the one-goal game did it feel like the tournament championship was possible.”


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Morrison noted that while the tournament title was a team win, it couldn’t have been possible without two players in particular. “We are very lucky to have two extremely talented goaltenders that bail our team out time and time again when mistakes are made,” Morrison said. “Destiny Provencio and Ella Park were outstanding that weekend and were the biggest reason that our team was in a position to win.” In addition to Provencio and Park, the Jr. Gulls are comprised of Malia Mor-

rison, Judy Meyer, Rebekah Wolfe, Emily Kurth, Sara Snyder, Sydney Sylvester, Emma Tasevski, Kylee Shannon, Brogan Gallavan, Sandra Fabela and Mia Ramirez. Behind the bench, Morrison is joined by assistant

coach Chris Wolfe. Team managers are Meighan Gallavan and Jennifer Wolfe. At the end of the day, Morrison said his team is big on team chemistry, and he expects that to be an even bigger factor next season. “With a few exceptions, our group of girls is willing to get to know their teammates,” said Morrison. “We have bonding activities for them, and especially on trips like this one to St. Louis, we have other events scheduled that help them really care about one another, which translates to their performance on the ice. They really do look out for each other. “For example, on this trip, all of the team took a trip to the St. Louis Gateway Arch and to an NCAA Division I women’s game between Lindenwood and Syracuse.” And while the 2018-19 season is still in the distance, making plans to be better next season and certainly at the forefront for Morrison and his crew. “Our girls qualified for the Pacific District tournament (held the second week of March in San Jose). We hope that it was a great learning experience for this mainly first-year (Minor) team, and that next year, these girls will have a chance to win that tournament.”


Synthetic Ice Skating Series - Part 1 of 3 – Strides


elcome to the Synthetic Ice Skating Series! HockeyShot’s Bench Boss, Jeremy Rupke, is joined by Skating Sensei, Jim Vitale, to create a multipart series to help you stay on your feet and beat the competition to the puck. The entire series was executed on HockeyShot’s industry leading, head turning, awe-inspiring Synthetic Ice! While most of you already know “Mr. How to Hockey,”

Jeremy Rupke, and some of you may be unfamiliar with the other man in these issues (March, April and May). Let us properly introduce you to a coach and hockey instructor for 20 plus years, Mr. Jim Vitale. He has put a tremendous amount of thought in the game and teaches players how to improve year after year. Jim Vitale from Vital Hockey Skills has been coaching many teams throughout Toronto including the Ontario Hockey League (OHL). Jim has run hockey

camps for years to improve hockey players training and skills to develop them for the next level. There is nothing more important than the skill of skating, so let’s get started. Vitale believes one of the most important skating drills is learning how to properly stride and maximizing the stride technique. Rupke asked what he thought is the most important thing for beginner players. Vitale responded, “It is just a matter of realizing that to go

forward, you have to go side to side.” Many coaches are teaching their players to go back-

to-front for their stride, but Vitale believes a stride should be more horizontal. “Like an airplane not a helicopter,” he says. By using their stride back to front, it is minimizing the amount of time the blade contacts the ice, and that is going to stop a player from getting down the ice as quickly as possible. The more efficient you are at transferring muscle from hip to the ankle, the better the stride is going to be. Starting your stride from the middle to the back of the blade allows you to make your force better. Proper stride posture is very key to being able to skate properly and going somewhere in between 90 degrees and 180 degrees gives your leg the only option to push sideways to extend horizontal. Remember, as your extending your leg, finish your stride for maximum effect. Stay tuned next month for Part 2 of the Synthetic Ice Skating Series, when Rupke and Vitale explain how to turn properly and manage “inertia.” For all the best hockey training products, including Synthetic Ice - Revolution Tiles and Extreme Glide Synthetic Ice, visit


2017-18 CALIFORNIA/NEVADA ALUMNI E-mail all additions, deletions and corrections to

CALIFORNIA PROFESSIONAL HOCKEY NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE Chase Balisy (Fullerton) – Florida Panthers Beau Bennett (Gardena) – St. Louis Blues Eric Comrie (Newport Beach) – Winnipeg Jets Rocco Grimaldi (Rossmoor) – Colorado Avalanche Nic Kerdiles (Irvine) – Anaheim Ducks Alec Martinez (Santa Clara) – Los Angeles Kings Stefan Matteau – Vegas Golden Knights ! Kevan Miller (Los Angeles) – Boston Bruins Matt Nieto (Long Beach) – Colorado Avalanche Gustav Olofsson – Minnesota Wild ! Brooks Orpik (San Francisco) – Washington Capitals Chad Ruhwedel (San Diego) – Pittsburgh Penguins Bobby Ryan (El Segundo) – Ottawa Senators Matt Tennyson (Pleasanton) – Buffalo Sabres Jason Zucker – Minnesota Wild * AMERICAN HOCKEY LEAGUE Sena Acolatse (Hayward) – Providence Bruins Mitch Callahan (Whittier) – Bakersfield Condors Pheonix Copley – Hershey Bears + Chase De Leo (La Mirada) – Manitoba Moose Collin Delia (Rancho Cucamonga) – Rockford IceHogs Thatcher Demko (San Diego) – Utica Comets Adam Erne – Syracuse Crunch * Matthew Ford (West Hills) – Grand Rapids Griffins Miles Koules (Los Angeles) – Cleveland Monsters Trevor Moore (Thousand Oaks) – Toronto Marlies Tyler Moy (San Diego) – Milwaukee Admirals Brett Sterling (Los Angeles) – Chicago Wolves Scooter Vaughan (Placentia) – Chicago Wolves Evan Weinger (El Segundo) – San Jose Barracuda ECHL Kyle Bigos (Upland) – Jacksonville IceMen Dennis Brown (Cypress) – Tulsa Oilers Matt Caito (Coto de Caza) – Rapid City Rush Taylor Crunk (San Jacinto) – Fort Wayne Komets Chase Golightly (Temecula) – Reading Royals Ben Greiner (Newport Beach) – Norfolk Admirals Garrett Haar (Huntington Beach) – Utah Grizzlies Dennis Kravchenko (San Clemente) – Fort Wayne Komets Matt Leitner (Los Alamitos) – Manchester Monarchs Brandon Marino (Riverside) – Brampton Beast Michael McNicholas (Manhattan Beach) – Indy Fuel Darren Nowick (Long Beach) – Kansas City Mavericks Sean O’Rourke (Alta Loma) – Kalamazoo Wings Austin Ortega (Escondido) – Utah Grizzlies Zach Pochiro – Allen Americans % Scott Savage (San Clemente) – Jacksonville IceMen Eric Shand (San Dimas) - Atlanta Gladiators Tomas Sholl (Hermosa Beach) – Adirondack Thunder Justin Woods – Jacksonville IceMen + SOUTHERN PROFESSIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE David Gandara (Canyon Lake) – Roanoke Rail Yard Dawgs Daniel Gentzler (Hermosa Beach) – Macon Mayhem Brendan Jensen (El Granada) – Evansville Thunderbolts Taylor Love (Mission Viejo) – Fayetteville Marksmen Mitchell Mueller (Bakersfield) – Roanoke Rail Yard Dawgs Jeff Sanders (San Jose) – Macon Mayhem Brantley Sherwood (San Anselmo) – Mississippi RiverKings John Siemer (Baldwin Park) – Macon Mayhem Matt Zenzola (San Diego) – Fayetteville Marksmen FEDERAL HOCKEY LEAGUE Justin Apcar-Blaszak (Valley Village) – Carolina Thunderbirds Daniel Chang (Woodland Hills) – Carolina Thunderbirds Josh Colten (Los Angeles) – Port Huron Prowlers Matt Graham (Rancho Cucamonga) – Port Huron Prowlers Branden Parkhouse (Rancho Cucamonga) – Port Huron Prowlers Sean Reynolds (Covina) – Danville Dashers EUROPE Taylor Aronson (Placentia) – Germany Jonathon Blum (Rancho Santa Margarita) – Russia Anthony Caruso (Rancho Santa Margarita) – Sweden Robbie Earl (Los Angeles) – Switzerland Emerson Etem (Long Beach) – Switzerland Shane Harper (Valencia) – Russia Josh Harris (Torrance) – Sweden Ryan Hollweg (Downey) – Czech Republic Brandon Kozun (Los Angeles) – Russia Ryan Lasch (Lake Forest) – Sweden Colin Long (Santa Ana) – Italy Kyle MacKinnon (Walnut) – Germany Rhett Rakhshani (Huntington Beach) – Sweden Brian Salcido (Hermosa Beach) – Sweden Liam Stewart (Hermosa Beach) – United Kingdom C.J. Stretch (Irvine) – Germany 22

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Mitch Wahl (Seal Beach) – Austria Casey Wellman (Brentwood) – Russia Matt White (Whittier) - Germany

Kayla Nielsen (Laguna Hills) – St. Lawrence University Justine Reyes (Chino Hills) – St. Lawrence University Tia Stoddard (La Mesa) – Clarkson University

NATIONAL WOMEN’S HOCKEY LEAGUE Kaliya Johnson – Boston Pride $ Kourtney Kunichika (Fullerton) – Buffalo Beauts Elena Orlando (Chico) – Connecticut Whale

HOCKEY EAST Cayla Barnes (Eastvale) – Boston College Nicole Dunbar (Coto de Caza) – University of New Hampshire

CANADIAN WOMEN’S HOCKEY LEAGUE Elizabeth Aveson (West Covina) – Boston Blades Chelsea Goldberg (Agoura Hills) – Boston Blades Rachel Llanes (San Jose) – Kunlun Red Star COLLEGE HOCKEY NCAA DIVISION I – MEN ATLANTIC HOCKEY Chris Buchanan (San Jose) – Bentley University Jake Hamacher (Corona) – Rochester Institute of Technology Trevin Kozlowski (Valecia) – U.S. Military Academy Trevor Maruya (Westchester) – U.S. Military Academy Jared Pike – American International College % Blake Weyrick (Los Angeles) – Canisius College BIG TEN Will Johnson (Santa Barbara) – University of Wisconsin Patrick Khodorenko (Walnut Creek) – Michigan State University Brannon McManus (Newport Beach) – University of Minnesota Andrew Oglevie (Fullerton) – University of Notre Dame Dakota Raabe (Capistrano Beach) – University of Michigan Jake Slaker (San Diego) – University of Michigan ECAC Max Becker (Orange) – Princeton University Arthur Brey (Yorba Linda) – St. Lawrence University Brett Gervais (Corona) – Clarkson University Alec McCrea (El Cajon) – Cornell University Alec Mehr (Los Angeles) – Brown University Gavin Nieto (Yorba Linda) – Brown University HOCKEY EAST Niko Hildenbrand (Vacaville) – University of Massachusetts Matt O’Donnell (Fountain Valley) – University of Vermont Nikolas Olsson (Escondido) – Boston University Ryan Ruck (Coto de Caza) – Northeastern University Eetu Selanne (Coto de Caza) – Northeastern University Nolan Stevens – Northeastern University % Ryan Tait (Santa Clarita) – Providence College Josh Wilkins – Providence College % NCHC Devin Cooley (Los Gatos) – University of Denver Lawton Courtnall (Westlake Village) – Western Michigan University Jake Durflinger (Walnut Creek) – University of Denver Grant Gallo (San Diego) – University of Nebraska-Omaha Jack Gates (Oceanside) – Colorado College Robby Jackson (Alameda) – St. Cloud State University Ben Lown (Newport Coast) – Miami University Tyson McLellan (San Jose) – University of Denver Patrick Newell (Thousand Oaks) – St. Cloud State University Ryan Orgel (El Segundo) – University of Denver Rourke Russell (Long Beach) – Miami University Ryan Siroky (Manhattan Beach) – Miami University Brian Williams (San Diego) – Colorado College WCHA Niko DellaMaggiore (Gilroy) – University of Alaska-Fairbanks Brendan Harris – Bemidji State University + Nate Kallen (San Diego) – Ferris State University Troy Loggins (Huntington Beach) – Northern Michigan University Nicholas Rivera (Pacific Palisades) – Minnesota State University Tyler Rockwell (San Jose) – Michigan Tech University Ethan Somoza (Simi Valley) – Bemidji State University Filip Starzynski – Northern Michigan University % NCAA DIVISION I – WOMEN CHA Hannah England (Simi Valley) – Penn State University Lillian Marchant (Tustin) – Lindenwood University Baylee Trani (Huntington Beach) – Rochester Institute of Technology ECAC Katherine Beaumier – Clarkson University $ Bailey Bennett (Gardena) – Colgate University Hana DeClerck (Menlo Park) – Brown University Keiko DeClerck (San Jose) – Princeton University Kara Drexler (Manhattan Beach) – Yale University Kendra Farole (Irvine) – Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Lydia Grauer – St. Lawrence University $ Christina Kao (Huntington Beach) – Yale University Keely Moy (San Diego) – Harvard University

WCHA Tatum Coats (Lakewood) – St. Cloud State University Leila Kilduff (San Jose) – Minnesota State University Annie Pankowski (Laguna Hills) – University of Wisconsin Aubrey Pritchett (Orange) – St. Cloud State University D-I INDEPENDENT Anna Estes (Whittier) – Post University Gabby Monaco (La Verne) – St. Anselm College Kalena Mueller (San Ramon) – Post University NCAA DIVISION III – MEN CCC David Anderson (Stevenson Ranch) – Nichols College Matt Audet (Campbell) – Western New England University Paul Boutoussov (Dana Point) – Salve Regina University Adam Canepa (Santa Cruz) – University of New England Cody Foster (Saugus) – Becker College Garrett Geane (Fullerton) – Wentworth Institute of Technology Carter Horwitz (Tustin) – Endicott College Evan Nyhus (Dove Canyon) – Nichols College Haroutiun Sarkisian (Encino) – Nichols College Evan Schmidbauer (San Diego) – Salve Regina University Joseph Thielen (Huntington Beach) – Curry College MASCAC Connor Cooley (Simi Valley) – University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth Khalil East (Los Angeles) – Worcester State University Drake Longaker (San Jose) – Plymouth State University Cameron Mack (Long Beach) – University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth Connor McPherson (Lancaster) – Fitchburg State University Kyle Orgel (El Segundo) – Plymouth State University Josh Reinstein (Woodland Hills) – Worcester State University Nicholas Short (Los Angeles) – University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth Cody Slocum (Temecula) – Worcester State University MIAC Peter Barral (Berkeley) – Bethel University Don Carter (Antioch) – Hamline University Noah Griffith (Bakersfield) – Concordia University Chandler Madry (Bakersfield) – Augsburg College Dallas Marvin (Newbury Park) – Bethel University Nick Nast (Oxnard) – St. Mary’s University Kyle Rimbach (Encinitas) – St. Olaf College Cole Souto (Yorba Linda) – St. John’s University Alex Stoley (Manteca) – Concordia University Christian Stoley (Manteca) – Concordia University J.T. Walters (Escondido) – Gustavus Adolphus College NCHA Rock Boynton (Lomita) – Milwaukee School of Engineering Lonnie Clary (Riverside) – Marian University Zach Feldman (San Diego) – Lake Forest College Kyle Gonzalez (Chino Hills) – Northland College Curran Klein (Palm Desert) – Finlandia University David Marabella (Clovis) – Milwaukee School of Engineering James Mathias (Ontario) – Marian University Connor Melton (Chico) – Northland College Danny O’Donnell (Ventura) – Aurora University Liam Stirtzinger (Simi Valley) – Aurora University Chris Timm (Dublin) – Trine University Nick Trefry (Upland) – Northland College Quinton Wunder (Simi Valley) – Lake Forest College NEHC Coby Downs (Montclair) – Norwich University Conor Ferrera (Trabuco Canyon) – University of Southern Maine Keenan Haase (Mission Viejo) – New England College David MacGregor (Azusa) – University of Massachusetts-Boston Ryan Ng (Manhattan Beach) – Castleton State University Bryce Nielsen (Laguna Hills) – New England College Adam Papayoanou (Valencia) – University of Southern Maine Will Platt (San Francisco) – New England College Mark Shroyer (Fresno) – Castleton State University Corey Sikich (Hermosa Beach) – Castleton State University NESCAC Nick Balboa (San Francisco) – Tufts University Ryan Glantz (Tarzana) – Connecticut College Chad Goldberg (Agoura Hills) – Tufts University Evan Johnson (Huntington Beach) – Williams College Sean Lawrence (Granite Bay) – Colby College Marcus Mollica (Dove Canyon) – Williams College Sean Ross (San Diego) – Wesleyan University Oliver Takacsi-Nagy (Los Gatos) – Tufts University

Theo Tydingco (Newark) – Wesleyan University NORTHEAST-10 Matthew Toombs (Pleasanton) – Franklin Pierce University SUNYAC Max Blitz (Chino Hills) – Fredonia State University Mike Freeman (Rancho Cucamonga) – Fredonia State University Paul Fregeau (Los Angeles) – Cortland State University Doc Gentzler (Manhattan Beach) – Brockport State University Carson Kelley (Portola Valley) – Geneseo State University Jasper Korican-Barlay (Oakland) – Fredonia State University Sean Lincoln (Rancho Santa Margarita) – Brockport State University Luke Rivera (Pacific Palisades) – Fredonia State University Zac Sikich (Oak Park) – Brockport State University Dylan Vander Esch (San Jose) – Potsdam State University UCHC Cory Anderson (Bakersfield) – Manhattanville College Andrew Frojelin (San Jose) – Manhattanville College Brian Hodges (Yorba Linda) – Stevenson University Manuel Mancha (Rosemead) – Chatham University Aaron Murray (Chino) – Stevenson University T.J. Sneath (Chino) – Lebanon Valley College Felix Takacsi-Nagy (Los Gatos) – Lebanon Valley College Jordan Watt (Riverside) – Stevenson University Chase Wilson (Riverside) – Lebanon Valley College Colin Woods (Yorba Linda) – Stevenson University WIAC Nicholas Klishko (San Diego) – University of Wisconsin-Superior D-III INDEPENDENT Devin Day (Fontana) – Post University Alec Grollman (Laguna Niguel) – Bryn Athyn College Kyle Matsumoto (Walnut) – Canton State University NCAA DIVISION III – WOMEN COLONIAL HOCKEY Madison Maloney (Clovis) – Becker College Cameron Payne (Rancho Cucamonga) – Becker College Ally Stout (Stockton) – Canton State University Anastasia Thompson (Riverside) – Becker College Jensen Wurm (Arvada) – Nichols College MIAC Valerie Brown (San Martin) – St. Thomas University Jessica Jones (El Cajon) – St. Mary’s University NCHA Jacqueline Audet (Campbell) – Lake Forest College Rachael Goodrow (Rancho Santa Margarita) – St. Norbert College Abby Kolek (San Marcos) – Finlandia University Julieana Tarantino (San Diego) – Lake Forest College NEHC Alexandra Anderson (San Anselmo) – Salve Regina University Taylor Chisholm (Discovery Bay) – Salve Regina University Maria Coleman (Garden Grove) – Salve Regina University Mackenzie Kennedy (Brea) – Plymouth State University Brooke Maggy (Alhambra) – Plymouth State University Maisie Tatum-Borich (Newport Beach) – New England College Tara Turcotte (Huntington Beach) – New England College NESCAC Colleen Castro (Redwood City) – Wesleyan University Kai-Lilly Karpman (Playa del Rey) – Trinity College Candace Lu (Studio City) – Williams College Alicia Nickolenko (Encinitas) – Wesleyan University Sarah Takahashi (Pleasanton) – Wesleyan University Emily Williams (Fallbrook) – Hamilton College NEWHL Emily Burke (San Jose) – Potsdam State University Bri Carroll – Buffalo State University $ Eva Kristof (Pleasanton) – Cortland State University Justine Silva (El Monte) – Buffalo State University Laura Thacker (San Jose) – Oswego State University Samantha White (Oceanside) – Potsdam State University Olivia Wilburn (Stockton) – Cortland State University UCHC Mary Deyell (Glendale) – King’s College Devyn Gilman (Yorba Linda) – Elmira College Bella Hanson – Elmira College $ Victoria Lahey (Redwood City) – Lebanon Valley College Kristi Peters (Newport Beach) – Manhattanville College Savannah Sommers (Corona) – Stevenson University Amy Templeman (Rancho Santa Margarita) – Lebanon Valley College Tristen Tolan – Elmira College $ CANADIAN UNIVERSITY Keanu Yamamoto – McGill University %

JUNIOR HOCKEY ALBERTA JUNIOR HOCKEY LEAGUE Sam Anzai (Los Angeles) – Drayton Valley Thunder Michael Boutoussov (Anaheim) – Drayton Valley Thunder John Elliott (Lakewood) – Drayton Valley Thunder Landon Pavlisin (Orange) – Camrose Kodiaks Lucas Yovetich (Los Angeles) – Fort McMurray Oil Barons BRITISH COLUMBIA HOCKEY LEAGUE Brandon Bergado (San Jose) – Alberni Valley Bulldogs Daniel Chladek (Anaheim) – Wenatchee Wild Jared Christy (Cypress) – Wenatchee Wild Slava Demin (Cypress) – Wenatchee Wild Zak Galambos (Walnut Creek) – Wenatchee Wild Andre Ghantous (Glendale) – Trail Smoke Eaters Noah Kim (Fullerton) – Wenatchee Wild Gregg Lee (Aliso Viejo) – Alberni Valley Bulldogs Jack Lippis (Mission Viejo) – Wenatchee Wild Jacob Modry (El Segundo) – Wenatchee Wild Luc Salem (Los Angeles) – Prince George Spruce Kings Chad Sasaki (Cypress) – Wenatchee Wild Paul Selleck (Laguna Hills) – Alberni Valley Bulldogs Murphy Stratton (Los Angeles) – Wenatchee Wild Julian Timba (Oceanside) – Salmon Arm Silverbacks Jared Turcotte (Moorpark) – Chilliwack Chiefs Jackson Wozniak (Cypress) – Wenatchee Wild CENTRAL CANADA HOCKEY LEAGUE Casey Rhodes (Huntington Beach) – Pembroke Lumber Kings EASTERN HOCKEY LEAGUE Hayden Dalton (Bakersfield) – New York Applecore Tanner Dalton (Bakersfield) – New York Applecore Dakota Delbridge (Tracy) – Philadelphia Jr. Flyers Ethan Gill (Santa Clarita) – New England Wolves John Grealish (Bakersfield) – Boston Jr. Rangers Nicholas Harris (Glendale) – Philadelphia Jr. Flyers Shawn Horner (Santa Clara) – New Hampshire Avalanche Eric Phillips (Orange County) - Walpole Express Bryan Verna (Lake Forest) – New England Wolves Eric Wright (San Diego) – Walpole Express GREATER METRO HOCKEY LEAGUE Christopher Maghakian (Santa Clarita) – Northumberland Stars Spencer Taylor (Venice) – Tillsonburg Hurricanes Jarrett Townsend (Rancho Santa Margarita) – Northumberland Stars KOOTENAY INTERNATIONAL JUNIOR HOCKEY LEAGUE Trevor Dilauro (Huntington Beach) – Spokane Braves Campbell Jackson (Hermosa Beach) – Spokane Braves NORTH AMERICAN HOCKEY LEAGUE Jake Acton (Livermore) – Corpus Christi IceRays Nathan Burke - Aberdeen Wings % Connor Chilton (Simi Valley) – Fairbanks Ice Dogs Jayson Dimizio (Goleta) – Corpus Christi IceRays Josh Fricks (Laguna Niguel) – Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights Cooper Haar (Huntington Beach) – Bismarck Bobcats Austin Koss (Huntington Beach) – Minot Minotauros Kyle Mayhew (Anaheim Hills) – Fairbanks Ice Dogs Garrett Nieto (Yorba Linda) – Janesville Jets Jake Rosenbaum (Trabuco) – Springfield Jr. Blues Evan Somoza (Simi Valley) – Odessa Jackalopes Kaelan Taylor (Oceanside) – Corpus Christi IceRays Matthew Wiesner (Newport Beach) – Northeast Generals Conor Yawney (Anaheim) – Corpus Christi IceRays Dante Zapata (Huntington Beach) – Austin Bruins NORTH AMERICAN 3 HOCKEY LEAGUE Ian Acuna (Glendora) – Peoria Mustangs Riley Anderson (Bishop) – Helena Bighorns Griffin Briquelet (Huntington Beach) – Oswego Stampede Matthew Brown (Woodland Hills) – Maine Wild Nick Castro (Redondo Beach) – Granite City Lumberjacks Brandon Chapin (Santa Clara) – Atlanta Capitals Ryan Cortez (Norco) – Long Beach Sharks Trent Cowden (Simi Valley) – Great Falls Americans Luc Cross (Anaheim) – Helena Bighorns Dylan Davenport – EvaLansing Wolves % Mason Evans (Danville) – Point Mallard Ducks Michael Fary (Anaheim) – Great Falls Americans Jacob Fisher (Danville) – Northeast Generals Ryan Gridley (Santa Monica) – Binghamton Jr. Senators Tyler Hawk (Palos Verdes) – North Iowa Bulls A.J. Hoyt (Yorba Linda) – Breezy Point North Stars Hayden Hoyt (Yorba Linda) – Breezy Point North Stars Kellen Ireland (Turlock) – Texas Brahmas Christian Kazoleas (Irvine) – Louisiana Drillers Morgan Kelly (San Jose) – Northeast Generals Ben Kottmeier (San Mateo) – Helena Bighorns Malik Lamotte Stokes (Anaheim) – Oswego Stampede Jett Larson (Rancho Mirage) – North Iowa Bulls Michael Lempiainen (Corona) – New England Stars Carson Murison (Half Moon Bay) – Texas Brahmas Luc Meier (Laguna Beach) – Long Beach Sharks Hunter Norris (Mission Viejo) – New England Stars Tristen Poliseno (Valencia) – Alexandria Blizzard Ty Proffitt – Yellowstone Quake + Jack Radley (San Diego) – Peoria Mustangs Luke Richesin (Clovis) – Great Falls Americans Owen Sikich (Hermosa Beach) – Granite City Lumberjacks

Jacob Takashima (Torrance) – Willmar WarHawks ONTARIO HOCKEY LEAGUE Sasha Chmelevski (Huntington Beach) – Ottawa 67’s Ivan Lodnia (Anaheim) – Erie Otters Jason Robertson (Los Angeles) – Kingston Frontenacs Nick Robertson (Los Angeles) – Peterborough Petes QUEBEC MAJOR JUNIOR HOCKEY LEAGUE Matthew Boucher (Los Angeles) – Quebec Remparts SUPERIOR INTERNATIONAL JUNIOR HOCKEY LEAGUE Rob Ivy (Bermuda Dunes) – Fort Frances Lakers SASKATCHEWAN JUNIOR HOCKEY LEAGUE Ryan Gil (Huntington Beach) – Battlefords North Stars Evan Plotnik (Capistrano Beach) – Melfort Mustangs Maxim Sidelnik (Los Angeles) – Estevan Bruins Connor Smith (Rancho Santa Margarita) – Battlefords North Stars Egan Wolford (San Jose) – La Ronge Ice Wolves UNITED STATES HOCKEY LEAGUE Vincent de Mey (Brentwood) – Muskegon Lumberjacks Cole Guttman (Los Angeles) – Dubuque Fighting Saints Rory Herrman (Poway) – Green Bay Gamblers Jack St. Ivany (Manhattan Beach) – Sioux Falls Stampede Cam York (Anaheim Hills) – U.S. NTDP Under-17 Team UNITED STATES PREMIER HOCKEY LEAGUE Alex Allen (Morgan Hill) – Islanders Hockey Club (Elite) Aaron Aragon (Whittier) – Northern Cyclones (NCDC) Lucas Bachofner (Los Angeles) – New Jersey Rockets (Premier) Jackson Baughman (Windsor) – Eugene Generals (Elite) Nash Berkowitz (San Jose) – Eugene Generals (Elite) Ethan Bock (Upland) – Boston Jr. Bruins (Premier) Guillaume Bose (San Jose) – Northern Cyclones (Premier) Bradley Budman (Foothill Ranch) – South Shore Kings (NCDC) Anthony Capraro (Hacienda Heights) – Northern Cyclones (Elite) Nikolai Cherednichenko (Berkeley) – Boston Bandits (Premier) Takato Cox (Redondo Beach) – Connecticut Jr. Rangers (NCDC) Evan Cronkhite (Aliso Viejo) – Boston Bandits (Premier) Ryan Danner (San Jose) – Ironwood Fighting Yoopers (Premier) Sean Dickson (Millbrae) – Hampton Roads Whalers (Premier) Tyler Dill (South Lake Tahoe) – Charlotte Rush (Premier) Dante DiNapoli (Moss Beach) – New Jersey Rockets (Premier) Dylan Dix (Scotts Valley) – Northern Cyclones (NCDC) Justin Dixson (Sunnyvale) – Boston Jr. Bruins (NCDC) Thomas Dyreng (San Jose) – Northern Cyclones (Elite) Dillon Foster (Saugus) – Eugene Generals (Elite) Luc Fox (Valencia) – Richmond Generals (Elite) Donovan Garcia (San Jose) – Islanders Hockey Club (Elite) John Garrity (Dublin) – Islanders Hockey Club (Premier) Dylan Gluck (San Juan Capistrano) – Tampa Bay Juniors (Premier) Joshua Harburn (San Ramon) – Boston Jr. Bruins (Elite) Jonathan Holguin (Fresno) – Hartford Jr. Wolfpack (Elite) Blake Howard (Coto de Caza) – New Jersey Rockets (NCDC) Adam Husley (Bakersfield) – Atlanta Knights (Premier) Wiggle Kerbrat (Laguna Niguel) – Rochester Monarchs (NCDC) Mason Kohn (San Diego) – Boston Jr. Bruins (Premier) Georg Landro (Riverside) – Potomac Patriots (Premier) Justin Lebouef (Canyon Country) – Boston Bandits (Premier) Jason Lee (Thousand Oaks) – Boston Bandits (Elite) Tyler Levine (Laguna Beach) – Islanders Hockey Club (NCDC) Wyatt Light (Manhattan Beach) – New Jersey Rockets (Premier) Mike Lopez (Bakersfield) – Atlanta Knights (Elite) Collin Markoski (Corona) – New York Aviators (Premier) Luis Mendoza (Newark) – Daytona Racers (Premier) Josh Morrison (San Diego) – Minnesota Moose (Premier) Nick Nakagawa (Los Angeles) – Daytona Racers (Premier) Matthew Newberger (Lake Tahoe) – Palm Beach Hawks (Premier) Ryan Newman (Bakersfield) – Charlotte Rush (Elite) Daniel Nikiforov (Roseville) – Minnesota Blue Ox (Premier) Geno Norraik (Northridge) – Boston Bandits (Premier) Robert Norwalk (Fremont) – Islanders Hockey Club (Premier) Nicholas Peterson (Stockton) – Palm Beach Hawks (Elite) Nick Privitera (Sun Valley) – Steele County Blades (Premier) Brandon Putman (Redondo Beach) – Northern Cyclones (Elite) Dylan Robello (San Jose) – Florida Eels (Premier) Brendan Schulte (Fullerton) – Northern Cyclones (Premier) Jordan Shepherd (Bakersfield) – Connecticut Nighthawks (Premier) Ryan Sheridan (Mission Viejo) – Northern Cyclones (Elite) Jack Sitzman (Redondo Beach) – Jersey Hitmen (NCDC) Jered Stevenson (Tracy) – New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs (Elite) Mischa Subotin (San Jose) – Syracuse Stars (Premier) Taylor Urch (Anaheim) – Richmond Generals (Premier) Tristian Waechter (Fairfield) – Jersey Hitmen (Premier) Jack Walsh (Oceanside) – Boston Bandits (Elite) Jack Walters – New York Aviators (Premier) ! Nick Wardstrom (Discovery Bay) – Islanders Hockey Club (Premier) Chad Watt (Riverside) – Potomac Patriots (Premier) WESTERN HOCKEY LEAGUE Blake Bargar (Torrance) – Seattle Thunderbirds Hunter Campbell – Calgary Hitmen % Jake McGrew (Orange) – Spokane Chiefs Carl Stankowski – Seattle Thunderbirds # Keoni Texeira (Fontana) – Portland Winterhawks Brayden Watts (Bakersfield) – Vancouver Giants Dustin Wolf (Tustin) – Everett Silvertips Kailer Yamamoto – Spokane Chiefs %

WESTERN STATES HOCKEY LEAGUE Joseph Aguirre (West Covina) – Ontario Avalanche Tristan Ayoubi (Orange) – Long Beach Bombers Leon Biller (Valencia) – Valencia Flyers Domenic Bosetti (Long Beach) – Long Beach Bombers Ryan Brown (South Lake Tahoe) – Seattle Totems Rhett Bruckner (Huntington Beach) – Phoenix Knights Christian Bundschuh (Newport Coast) – Utah Outliers Declan Curtis (Fontana) – Ontario Avalanche Carter Dahl (Fresno) – Colorado Jr. Eagles Lucas Demsar (South Lake Tahoe) – Tahoe Icemen Quinn Deshler (Hawthorne) – Ontario Avalanche Conner Duffy (Orange County) – Ontario Avalanche Easton Easterson (Canyon Country) – Tahoe Icemen Ryan Favilla (Garden Grove) – Ontario Avalanche Sage Fleming (Costa Mesa) – Ogden Mustangs Nicholas Gary (Palo Alto) – West Sound Warriors Daniel Goodwin (Fresno) – Fresno Monsters Ben Greenlee (San Jose) – San Diego Sabers David Grindstaff (Sacramento) – San Diego Sabers Nickolai Gruzdev (Valencia) – Valencia Flyers Joseph Hebert (Santa Clarita) – Valencia Flyers Samuel Hernandez (Fontana) – Ontario Avalanche Taylor Hiatt (Fresno) – Fresno Monsters Jason Hickman (Saugus) – Valencia Flyers Keshawn Hopkins-Scott (San Diego) – Phoenix Knights Taylor Jolly (Saugus) – Cheyenne Stampede Max Kamper (Aliso Viejo) – El Paso Rhinos Cody Key (Fresno) – Fresno Monsters Thomas King (Ontario) – Ontario Avalanche Gabel Longshore (Davis) – Tahoe Icemen William Ma (Orange County) – Ontario Avalanche Jacob Mabaquaio (San Diego) – Bellingham Blazers Kyler Mackay (Corona) – San Diego Sabers Jeremy Malm (Santa Clarita) – Valencia Flyers Daylon Mannon (Fresno) – Fresno Monsters Tate Martishius (Valencia) – Valencia Flyers Parker Moskal (San Diego) – Long Beach Bombers Cole Parker (San Diego) – San Diego Sabers Michael Perez (Fresno) – West Sound Warriors Joseph Piroli (Saugus) – Valencia Flyers Bailey Prouty (Valencia) – Valencia Flyers Brett Ruiz (Ontario) – Ontario Avalanche Dylan San Agustin (Santa Clarita) – Valencia Flyers Kane Toriumi (Westlake Village) – Utah Outliers Tanner Turcotte (Huntington Beach) – Tahoe Icemen Jeremy Van Dyke (Corona) – Ontario Avalanche PREP SCHOOL Alan Austria-Garcia (Redwood City) – Tahoe Hockey Academy Brandon Bedient (Stevenson Ranch) – Tahoe Hockey Academy Grady Birk (Carlsbad) – Shawnigan Lake School Jordan Bonner (Huntington Beach) – Albany Academy Noah Dahlen (Orange) – Tahoe Hockey Academy Liam Dauphinee (Newport Beach) – Tahoe Hockey Academy Jared Day (Orange) – Brooks School Zachary Dill (Tahoe) – Tahoe Hockey Academy Corey Eaton (San Marcos) – Tilton School Tanner Ensign (Tustin) – Holderness School Riley Fenn (Newport Beach) – Tahoe Hockey Academy Ryan Fischer (Anaheim Hills) – South Kent Dennis L. Y. Franklin (Oakland) – The Taft School Aidan Garcia (Burbank) – The Groton School Shane Gilbert (Newport Beach) – Tahoe Hockey Academy Jonah Gold (Rolling Hills Estates) – Groton School Niko Grollman (Mission Viejo) – The Gunnery Tyler Herr (Huntington Beach) – Culver Academy Lily Humphrey (Huntington Beach) – New Hampton School Nathan Katzaroff (Anaheim) – Milton Academy Nicholas Kent (Ladera Ranch) – Delta Hockey Academy Noah Kim (Fullerton) – Cushing Academy Indigo Kinzey (Pacifica) – Tahoe Hockey Academy Matt Kors (Los Angeles) – Shawnigan Lake School Alexander Krause (Calabasas) – Loomis Chaffee Jordan Labbe (Pasadena) – Tahoe Hockey Academy Erik Larsson (Los Altos) – Tahoe Hockey Academy Nicholas Lee (Los Angeles) – Salisbury School Noah Lee (Los Angeles) – Salisbury School Tae Lee (Irvine) – The Governor’s Academy Koby Leeman (Napa) - Culver Academy Tyler Leibl (Del Mar) – Shawnigan Lake School Roan Linvill (Berkeley) – Tahoe Hockey Academy Mathias Long (Marina del Rey) – Lake Forest Academy Jesse Lycan (San Diego) – Berkshire School Brandon McDonald (Los Angeles) – Vermont Academy Kyle McElhaney (Yorba Linda) – Tilton School Nolan McElhaney (Yorba Linda) – Cushing Academy Adam McGill (Rancho Santa Margarita) – Tahoe Hockey Academy Keely Moy (San Diego) – Kent School Matthew Odom (Elk Grove) – Tahoe Hockey Academy Zach Pires (Villa Park) – Tahoe Hockey Academy Steven Plante (Valencia) – Tahoe Hockey Academy John Pratt (Laguna Niguel) – Berkshire School Patrick Pugliese (Pasadena) – Loomis Chaffee Alexander Rogers (Anaheim) – Williston Northampton Brett Roloson (Newport Beach) – Shawnigan Lake School Ross Roloson (Newport Beach) – Shawnigan Lake School Hunter Sansbury (Lomita) – The Gunnery Chase Sechrist (Santa Rosa) – Tahoe Hockey Academy Blake Selden (Santa Clara) – Tahoe Hockey Academy

Jordan Skahill (San Dimas) – South Kent Daniel Thomas (Irvine) – Hotchkiss School Daniel Ton-That (Laguna Hills) – Tilton School Jackson Tuszynski (Valencia) – Tahoe Hockey Academy Lukas Uhler (Upland) – New Hampton School Brent Valentine (Newport Beach) – Choate Rosemary Hall Ryan Wilson (San Diego) – Milton Academy Eric Yagubyan (Burbank) – Tilton School Billy Zegras (San Diego) – The Berkshire School

NEVADA PROFESSIONAL HOCKEY NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE Jason Zucker (Las Vegas) – Minnesota Wild AMERICAN HOCKEY LEAGUE Gage Quinney (Las Vegas) – Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins ECHL Chris Francis (Las Vegas) – Quad City Mallards Ross McMullan (Las Vegas) – Wheeling Nailers Zach Pochiro (Las Vegas) – Allen Americans Cory Ward (Las Vegas) – Manchester Monarchs EUROPE Bryce Reddick (Las Vegas) - United Kingdom SOUTHERN PROFESSIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE Derek Sutliffe (Las Vegas) – Mississippi RiverKings CANADIAN WOMEN’S HOCKEY LEAGUE Megan Myers (Las Vegas) – Boston Blades COLLEGE HOCKEY NCAA DIVISION I – MEN ECAC Joe Sullivan (Las Vegas) – St. Lawrence University WCHA Brendan Harris (Henderson) – Bemidji State University D-I INDEPENDENT Dominic Garcia (Las Vegas) – Arizona State University Joey Raats (Las Vegas) – Arizona State University NCAA DIVISION I – WOMEN CHA Sarah Robello (Las Vegas) – Mercyhurst University NCAA DIVISION III – MEN CCC Alec Mono (Las Vegas) – Curry College NESCAC Brenden Russ (Las Vegas) – Connecticut College UCHC Eric Williams (Henderson) – Chatham University D-III INDEPENDENT Tanner Todd (Henderson) – Bryn Athyn College JUNIOR HOCKEY EASTERN HOCKEY LEAGUE Gage Roberts (Las Vegas) – Valley Jr. Warriors NORTH AMERICAN HOCKEY LEAGUE Joseph Allegrini (Las Vegas) – Kenai River Brown Bears Seth Bergeron (Las Vegas) – Philadelphia Rebels NORTH AMERICAN 3 HOCKEY LEAGUE Vito Carlo (Las Vegas) – Atlanta Capitals Dylan Davenport – Lansing Wolves @ Brenden Fehlig (Las Vegas) – College Station Spirit Josh Kirk (Henderson) – Missoula Jr.. Bruins Gunner Moore (Las Vegas) – Atlanta Capitals Cameron Zucker (Las Vegas) – Lansing Wolves QUEBEC MAJOR JUNIOR HOCKEY LEAGUE Landon Quinney (Las Vegas) – Saint John Sea Dogs UNITED STATES PREMIER HOCKEY LEAGUE Michael Cichy (Las Vegas) – Wisconsin Muskies (Premier) Hayden Knight (Las Vegas) – Hampton Roads Whalers (Premier) Spencer Poscente (Las Vegas) – Wisconsin Muskies (Premier) WESTERN STATES HOCKEY LEAGUE Jake McKenna (Las Vegas) – Valencia Flyers Jackson Oleson (Stateline) – Tahoe Icemen Gabriel Testa (Las Vegas) – Fresno Monsters % former LA Jr.. King + former California Titan * former LA Select ! former San Jose Jr. Shark

# former Anaheim Jr. Duck $ former Anaheim Lady Duck @ former Nevada Storm


Off-ice work paying off for Humanitarian finalist Rivera By Chris Bayee


message from his older brother Jake a couple of years ago started Luke Rivera down a path advocating for others that has him in the running for the 2018 Hockey Humanitarian Award. The Hockey Humanitarian Award Foundation annually awards college hockey’s “finest citizen” for leadership in community service. “When my older brother, who did a charity event through hockey for autism, graduated, he texted my younger brother (Nick, a sophomore forward at Minnesota State) and me,” Luke recalled. “He told us, ‘The one thing I regret about the four years I spent at Potsdam (State) is I wish I could have given more off the ice. You guys have an opportunity to do more than just play a game.’” That got Luke, a junior forward at Fredonia State, thinking. “I know our team does something for cancer, but I’d never seen anybody do a stroke awareness game,” he said. “It wasn’t out there.” Rivera has vivid memories of the impact a stroke can have on an individual and a family, because his mother Dana suffered one in 2009 while at a store. She was rushed to an emergency room, then released, then suffered a second one at home. Her husband Rick and Jake rushed home from a hockey tournament in Las Vegas. The three brothers and their sister Sophie grew closer during the following weeks, months and years as their mother, who Luke described as a picture of health, recovered. “Nicky was the youngest, 11 or 12, and he didn’t

understand what was going on,” Luke said. “We had to be strong for him and for each other. A lot of family and friends helped us out. We could see the true colors of people.” Dana has recovered fully and uses her experience to motivate others through various charity functions and speaking engagements. Luke, who played for the L.A. Jr. Kings and the California Heat, followed her lead and the admonishment of his older brother and began plotting a Stroke Awareness Game for Fredonia for the 2016-17 sea-

Pacific Palisades native Luke Rivera Luke Rivera has seen success on the ice at Fredonia State University, but more importantly, has made an impact in the local community off the ice. Photo/Ron Szot/Fredonia State Athletics

son. There was one problem – his coach, Jeff Meredith, had seen this sort of enthusiasm before, only to watch it fade. “Everyone has a lot of ideas, but you have to work and put it together and everyone scatters,” he said.

“Luke is very organized and on point, so I told him we need to have meetings to update me on what you’re working on. “It only took a couple meetings to realized he was on a mission.” The 2016-17 game raised almost $10,000. This year’s game, which Rivera couldn’t play in because he was rehabbing a torn Achilles’ tendon, raised slightly more. He also received $500 for being selected a Hockey Humanitarian Award finalist. His vision and action resulted in a contribution of $20,500 to the Kaleida Health Foundation in Buffalo. “He did a great job,” Meredith said. “I told his parents, ‘All I’m doing is reaping the rewards of your 23 years of hard work.’” The Feb. 5 announcement that Rivera became the first player in Fredonia’s history to reach the final five for the award set off a practice celebration. He provided a further boost to the program when he resumed practicing shortly before the end of the season. “His teammates love him and were so excited for him,” Meredith said. “A lot goes into a team’s success, and even though it’s been hard for him to sit out, he has brought encouragement and that insight from watching hockey like a coach would.” The winner of the Hockey Humanitarian Award is expected to be announced later this month. The winner and his family then will be honored at the Frozen Four in St. Paul, Minn., in early April. It’s possible Nick Rivera might be there in a more official capacity. Minnesota State has been highly ranked all season and has a shot to make the Frozen Four. “That would be the most incredible thing in the world, especially for my mom and dad,” Luke said.

Oglevie helping Notre Dame’s rise up national rankings By Chris Bayee


atience and perseverance are paying dividends for Andrew Oglevie and for the University of Notre Dame. The junior forward has emerged as one of the Irish’s dominant players regardless of which position he plays, not that getting to that point has been easy. Oglevie, a Fullerton native, played four seasons of junior hockey for Cedar Rapids (USHL) after growing up playing for the LA Selects and then heading to Culver Military Academy for a year. The extra time in his development path helped prepare him for the rigors of college hockey. “(Four years of junior) really helped him mature, not just as a player but as a young man,” Notre Dame coach Jeff Jackson said. “He came in here as a freshman and he was ahead of the game just because he was a little older. It allowed him to grow into a bigger role as time has gone on here. Even last year, I recognized he was headed toward being a leader of our program.” Oglevie, who is one of the Irish’s assistant captains this season, moved into a leadership role on the scoresheet last season, when he had 41 points in 40 games, including 21 goals. He’s kept that up this season with 31 points in his first 30 games, including 12 goals – four of which have been game-winners. The secret to his emergence might sound simple enough, but the hours spent were anything but, according to Oglevie. “The basic improvement is strength. That was always my biggest weakness growing up. I was always smaller,” said the 5-foot-10, 180-pound Oglevie. “Be24

California Rubber Hockey Magazine

ing able to work with a world-class trainer like Tony Jackson said of the move. “He’s played center quite Rolinski has helped me a ton. a bit in his career (before Notre Dame). Last year, we “Coach Jackson has helped me polish up the de- probably needed him more on the right side because fensive aspect of my game as well. But the strength he’s right-handed. With his skating ability, I liked the aspect, getting that power, being able to play against idea that he could get out of the zone first as a winger some heavier players has made as opposed to getting out of all the difference. Speed’s althe zone last as a center.” ways been my thing. The main Oglevie welcomed the ademphasis was maintaining ditional responsibilities of his that speed but developing the new/old position. strength to protect the puck “Now that I’m center, I have in the corners a little bit better to be more of the distributor and not get knocked off the and work more in the greasy puck so easily.” areas, dig pucks out and find Oglevie didn’t need to open teammates,” he said. overhaul his game, but Jack“Our line has clicked well.” son did encourage him to The results have been make some tweaks. promising. Notre Dame has “He has a better underranked in the top five virtually standing of how to play withall season, and it won the Big out the puck,” Jackson said. Ten’s regular-season title in a “I try to encourage him to play campaign that included a 16more inside the dots so he can Fullerton native Andrew Oglevie has been one of Notre game win streak at one point. be more of a factor. When he Dame’s top scorers this season and has led the Irish to The Irish have accomuses his speed, he’s a pret- a No. 1 ranking in the national polls at different points plished that because their dety effective offensive player. of the year. Photo/Fighting Irish Media fense has been exceptional. Same thing without the puck.” They allowed just 2.18 goals per game (eighth in DiviForming a more well-rounded game was a necessi- sion I) heading into the Big Ten tournament. ty for Oglevie this season as earlier this year, he moved Oglevie has played a role in that. from right wing to centering a line with Dylan Malm““He’s been really good at center because he can quist and Cal Burke, who played one season of junior skate so well,” Jackson said. “He’s a smart player, and with Oglevie in Cedar Rapids. The wings have com- he’s got tremendous puck skills and he’s responsible. bined for 20 goals, many coming off Oglevie’s stick. He’s had to become more responsible defensively as “Some of it was need, but some of it’s ability level,” a center.”

Crowning Achievement

Western Collegiate Roller Hockey League holds exciting division championships in Corona day of the two-day event before entering elimination bracket play. All teams received seeds to the elimination bracket based on pool play. Arizona State (16-2-0-1 in the regular season) won all three of its pool games to earn the top seed for the Division I playoffs, while UC Santa Barbara (13-4-0-3 in the regular season) finished 2-1 in pool play to earn the second seed for the playoffs. Cal Poly SLO (11-5-0-3 in the regular season) and CSU Fullerton (5-14 in the regular season) earned the third and fourth seeds, respectively, for the playoffs. Cal Poly upset Santa Barbara 5-4 on an overtime goal by Daniel Kumata, assisted by Joe Blakewell, to advance to the championship game. Meanwhile,

Player award after scoring the game-winning goal, while Sun Devils goaltender Aaron Gittings earned he Western Collegiate Roller Hockey League the Most Valuable Goaltender award after posting (WCRHL) held its regional championship a 5-0 record, 1.57 goals against average and .906 tournament March 3-4 at THE RINKS-Corona Inline. save percentage over the weekend. Champions in the three competition tiers – “One comment that doesn’t come across great in Division I, Division II and Division III – each received the stats is how stingy the defenses are for ASU and automatic bids to next month’s National Collegiate Cal Poly – great goaltending from these two teams in Roller Hockey Association (NCRHA) national particular,” Edwards noted. championship tournament in Fargo, N.D. Gittings led Division I goaltenders during the In the Division I championship game, regularregular season with a 2.86 GAA and .853 save season division champion Arizona State University percentage. Cal Poly’s Nic Leacox ranked second defeated Cal Poly San Luis Obispo by a 3-2 score to with a 3.69 GAA and .828 save percentage. punch its ticket to the April 11-15 nationals. UC Santa Barbara’s Kevin Mooney led Division I The Division II championship game proved to be scorers during regular-season play with 35 goals and an all-Arizona affair as the Northern Arizona 77 points, while teammate Jack Mathews University Lumberjacks won their first ranked second with 50 points (32 goals, 18 regional championship in their second year assists). Mooney topped all scorers in pool in the division by edging the intrastate rival play at regionals with 12 points (six goals, six University of Arizona Wildcats 8-6 in a game assists) in three games. that featured two goals scored in the final San Jose State University, which edged three seconds, both by NAU. the University of Arizona and NAU for the In a matchup of teams that topped top spot in the regular-season Division II the Division III regular-season standings standings, defeated Cal Poly Pomona 4-3 in with identical 15-1 records, Arizona State overtime and the Cal Berkeley Bears 10-3 to defeated Cal Poly SLO Gold 7-4 to secure earn a bye to the regional quarterfinals. an automatic bid to the upcoming nationals. However, the Wildcats ended the WCRHL director Brennan Edwards, Spartans’ run there with a 4-2 win to join who also serves as NCRHA executive Arizona twin NAU in the championship game director, noted it was the first time in 15 after the Lumberjacks defeated Pomona 8-5 years that a club’s Division I and Division III in the other semifinal. teams had come into the tournament ranked NAU’s Trevor Riffey scored the gameNo. 1 and won both regional championships. The California State University Fullerton Titans qualified to compete in this month’s West- winning goal in the Division II regional “Arizona State University’s two teams ern Collegiate Roller Hockey League regional championship tournament in Corona. Photo/ championship game on a breakaway with Fullerton Titans came into the event as No. 1 seeds in their three seconds to play. Teammate Daniel respective divisions and they lived up to the seeding,” ASU topped Fullerton 7-1 behind five points (two Diaz added an empty-net goal with one second left Edwards said. “Both completed the task in all of their goals, three assists) from Aaron Bland to reach the to prevent the Wildcats from repeating as regional games, finishing with a perfect record.” final. champions. Blakewell and Kumata each scored first-period Riffey, an Alta Loma native, earned Division II Final countdown goals to stake the Mustangs to an early 2-0 lead over MVP honors with 13 goals and 19 points in four The top four regular-season finishers in Division the Sun Devils in the title matchup. However, ASU tournament games. I, plus the top six finishers in both the Division II and rallied with second-period goals by Aryeh Richter, Cal’s Ryan Daubenmire led Division II regularDivision III regular-season standings, qualified to Cy Jewel and Jayme Haveman to record the come- season scorers with 32 goals and 61 points. San compete in the regional playoffs. from-behind victory. Jose State’s Jacob Hickey ranked second in the Teams competed in round-robin play the opening Haveman received the division’s Most Valuable division with 48 points.

By Phillip Brents


Fargo Fourteen: WCRHL teams get bids to national tourney A

total of 14 teams from the Western Collegiate Roller Hockey League (WCRHL) have been extended bids to compete in the National Collegiate Roller Hockey Association (NCRHA) national championship tournament April 11-15 in Fargo, N.D. Bids were extended to the three WCRHL regional champions, plus teams selected on an atlarge basis. Arizona State University, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, California State University Fullerton and the University of California Santa Barbara received Division I bids. The University of Arizona, Cal Poly Pomona, Northern Arizona University and San Jose State University each received Division II bids. Arizona State University, Cal Poly SLO, CSU Fullerton and West Valley College all received Division III bids. Both Saddleback College and West Valley College will represent the WCRHL in the Junior

College Division. This division does not feature a Swanson commented. “They are a good team regional championship qualifier. Instead, teams are that beat us twice this season, but the games were close and could have gone either way. We selected on an invitational basis. West Valley returns to defend its JC Division are heading to Fargo to defend our title, so we national championship title. The Vikings finished need to stay focused and determined.” “Saddleback is a good regular-season play with an competitor and we’ve been 8-5-0-3 record. Intrastate rival playing against the same Saddleback finished 11-5 in teams all season with similar its return to active status this results,” West Valley’s Joe season. Kubani added. “They edged us Saddleback defeated West in two head-to-head games. I’m Valley by scores of 5-4 (in looking forward to playing them overtime) and 5-3 this season. again and hope we meet up “We are returning to the in the championship game in national championships for the Fargo.” third time and this year, with The University of Arizona is only three returning players Jarritt Baker is among the select few returning players from last year’s West Valley College nafrom last season, it’s going tional championship team. Photo/Ed Salazar an alternate in Division III. to be a challenge for us to play against Saddleback,” West Valley’s Matt - Phillip Brents



Position: Defenseman, Jacksonville Ice Men (ECHL) Last Amateur Team: Merrimack College (Hockey East) Youth Hockey Teams: Ontario Jets, Ontario Senators, Anaheim Jr. Ducks NHL Draft: Fourth-round pick of the Edmonton Oilers (99th overall) in 2009 California Rubber: You’re back playing this season after taking most of last season off. How did you spend your season away from the game? Kyle Bigos: I started last year in Idaho and things didn’t really work out. So I went to work as a registered behavioral therapist working with kids with autism. I studied human development at Merrimack, and I was always pushed by my academic advisor to work with people. I found out this was something I excelled at, and I had a great time with the company. It’s something I have in my future, and it made me feel settled about my future. CR: What prompted you to try to return to pro hockey? KB: I wanted to end on a good note. I had a lot of friends here, and the team dynamic is going well. Having fun with hockey was a priority. I had left my hockey bag packed up and took a hiatus from the gym for the first time in my life for 7-8 months. Then I got the itch to come back. (Quad City Mallards coach) Phil Axtell gave me a call and I jumped right back on the ice in Anaheim with a couple of guys. I did Pilates, which I love. I felt ready. I injured a groin, then played three games, and then injured a hip flexor in the other leg. I started late, which was scary after a year off. (Bigos was traded to the Jacksonville IceMen earlier this month.) CR: Did you have a favorite hockey memory growing up in California? KB: Definitely Saturdays at the old Ontario Ice Skating Center. I would get lessons with Fernando Soltero or Punky Vandenberg. I could just play for fun. CR: What is your favorite memory since? KB: Winning the Royal Bank Championship with the BCHL’s Vernon Vipers (in 2009). It was great to be part of a winning team, especially one with (fellow Californians) Cory Kane, Steve Weinstein and Ryan Santana. Having that one season doing everything right as a team is incredible. That’s what you strive for in the game. CR: Do you have a favorite place to eat when you’re back in Southern California? KB: By default, it has to be In-N-Out. There’s a tacos and tamales place on Foothill and Grove I love go to for lunch. There’s a café next to it that I go to for breakfast. CR: Are you particular about any of your gear? KB: My skates. My feet have to be comfortable. I wear bunga pads and extra gel pad and socks. I tie my skates between periods, sometimes during timeouts. The laces have to be pads. CR: What do you like to take with you on road trips? KB: I’m a card guy. Give me a pack of cards, get water or Gatorade, and some snacks from the booster club and I’m good. CR: When you talk to younger players, what do you like to say? KB: Do what’s going to make you better every day, make you grow as a person. That’s something you’ve got to instill early with kids. Get them more on a focused track. Have fun through bettering yourself. CR: Who were some of the coaches that influenced you in Southern California? KB: I can’t even begin to describe what Punky Vandenberg means to me and SoCal skaters. She’s the one who pushed me to be better and get out of my comfort zone. She really cared and made you practice perfection. Without her and Fernando Soltero, I don’t think I would have made it out of Southern California.

Photo/Sean Flynn Photography/Quad City Mallards


California Rubber Hockey Magazine

CR: What’s your favorite hockey movie? KB: Definitely “Slap Shot.” The older you get and longer you play in the game, the more you can relate to it. - Compiled by Chris Bayee

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