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Tryouts for travel hockey, FAQs.

Midcoast Youth Hockey will be holding tryouts soon for next year’s travel hockey programs at both the peewee and squirt level. As we gear up for it (dates will be announced soon) we are hearing questions. Here are some of them along with answers.

 

Why do you do the tryouts in the spring? Why not wait until fall?

The Maine Amateur Hockey Association (MeAHA), the governing body for youth hockey, requires it. It allows associations to judge how much interest their members have, and how many teams they can field at each age group. This, in turn, allows MeAHA to plan and schedule.


We will be required to certify to MeAHA at their annual meeting (May or June) how many teams we will have, and at what ages groups. There are significant penalties for declaring a team and later withdrawing. In addition, if you fail to declare a team at the annual meeting you cannot do so later.

 

So if my child does not “make the team” this spring they cannot play travel hockey next season?

No. We can add to the roster next year. The only requirement is that we have enough commitments this spring that we know we can field a team next year. Likewise if a child has a conflict with the tryout date (illness, travel etc) you should speak to coaches and/or MCYH leadership to discuss your skater.

 

What is travel hockey anyway?

Travel hockey is more competitive than house league. Skaters are selected based on their skill, hockey-sense, and receptiveness to coaching. Essentially, it is an all-star team for the age group. The teams are matched up in a league and compete against one another in a regular, predetermined schedule. It is much more structured than house league. There is a state championship and a sectional championship. Rosters are fixed at the beginning of the season.

 

How do you pick the team?

In the past we have sought assistance from outside evaluators with no current connection to MCYH to conduct evaluations and rate players; this gives us an independent, non-biased starting point. Last season the evaluation sessions were conducted by Bowdoin’s Men’s Assistant Coach Jamie Dumont, scoring the players from the stands and independently of each other were a selection committee consisting of two local high school coaches and the head coach of our travel team. While our head coach does know many of the players his presence allowed for the possibility of considering characteristics such as recent progress. In other words two players may match up evenly on a rating sheet but our coach may know that one has progressed tremendously during just one season while the other has played for years.

A similar process will be used this season.

 

Does Midcoast have a travel team now?

Yes. We have a Tier 3 travel teams for squirts. After many years away from travel hockey we threw our hat back in the ring with this season. We expect to grow from this adding a peewee team next season too.

Last season a group of squirts played an abbreviated travel season mixed in amongst their regular Tier IV schedule. While it did provide something of an “all-star” experience scheduling games outside of regular league play was very difficult as skaters and coaches still had to attend to the Tier 4 schedule.

Because our Tier 3 squirt team has done so well this season we look forward to expanding our travel offerings. We have had a great deal of success on the ice (18-3-1 as of this week), but, more important, have seen a great deal of growth in the players both as individual players but also as a team.

 

What does this Tier stuff mean?

Tier 4 means a team that is made of players that want to play hockey----there are no tryouts. Typically when an association has more than one Tier 4 team it is expected that they will balance their teams as best they can.

Tier 3 is the first level of travel hockey. Tier 2 is slightly more competitive and fewer associations compete at Tier 2. There is no Tier 1 hockey in Maine.

 

If we have travel teams at both squirt and peewee does this mean there will be no more Tier 4 hockey at Midcoast?

No. We expect to offer a Tier 4 team for peewees and two Tier 4 teams for squirts. Tier 4 teams will have regular game schedules against other associations.

Do we need to come to tryouts if we are already sure we do not want to do travel?

Absolutely not. Unless you are certain you child wants this there is no reason to worry about tryouts. We will always have room for skaters in our "house" teams at the Tier 4 level and in other developmental programs as well.

 

Is the travel team’s schedule predictable?

Yes. This year the Tier 3 Squirt travel team’s 24 game schedules was booked and confirmed by the 1st of October. Games can be played starting about mid-October (we started game play in Mid-November as we recognize that fall sports are also important to many of our families); the season must end by February 14th. The state tournament is typically the last weekend in February. If the team advances to sectionals you can expect another tournament, generally the second weekend in March.

Generally there were two games a weekend with a break during Christmas vacation.

 

But what about practice, that changes all the time right?

No, This season the Tier 3 team practiced twice a week, at 6:00 PM every Monday and at 6:20 PM every Thursday.

Probably all of this year’s Mite EP players will make the T3 squirt team next season, right?

No. Squirts and peewees are different than mites. While mite EP was only open to the oldest mites, those born in 2007, the squirt travel team next season will be open to both first and second year squirts.

So the 16 EP mites along with all other mites born in 2007 may try out for this team. At the tryout they should expect to see squirts that are on this year’s travel team along with a large number of ’06 squirts that have been playing Tier 4 this season. It would be reasonable to estimate that somewhere around half of next season’s squirt travel team will be 2nd year squirts, born in 2006, while half will be 1st year squirts, born in 2007. Several skaters on this season’s Tier 3 travel team played Tier 4 squirts last season with no additional play opportunities. In addition, not all the skaters on this year's travel team played EP as mites; some simply developed later.

Remember the second year squirts will have had a whole season of playing the full-ice game. And of course they may be bigger, stronger, and faster.

So “making the team” as a squirt or peewee is a two year proposition.

It is important for parents and skaters to understand that “not making the team,” or “making the team” for one season, especially at this age, is not a firm predictor for future hockey success.

 

Does it cost more?

Yes. Because of the additional practice every week and because there are more games the cost of the travel program is higher. These year Tier 4 squirts paid $495, while T3 squirts paid $1,000. (By comparison the Gladiators Tier 4 costs $850, and Tier 3 costs $1300).

If you have specific questions please feel free to contact us directly.


Benet Pols,

President, MCYH

benetpols@myfairpoint.net

 

Registration is OPEN for the 2015-2016 Girls Junior High Supplemental Practice Only Option!

Midcoast Youth Hockey Association is offering a limited (maximum 10 players) practice only option for 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th girls who are not already part of an existing Maine Youth Hockey Association program. The intent of this program is to provide an opportunity for interested girls to learn and practice valuable skating and stick handling skills, along with team play concepts. We recognize that many girls take an interest in ice hockey at the junior high level for the first time, or after a long break from their days as mites, and practice time is limited at the middle school level.

We want to offer these girls an opportunity to “catch up.”

The program will begin as soon as girls register and will run through the end of the MCYH season (for most programs around March 1).  The cost of the program will be $175 with practices taking place each Monday night at Norway Savings Bank Arena, and periodic Thursday. An additional practice will be offered most weekends the program runs, typically the weekend session is in Brunswick at the Watson Arena.  Each player will join either a squirt (6:00pm to 7:00pm) or peewee (7:10pm to 8:10pm) group, depending upon age, skill level, and parental input. In addition, when necessary we will seek input from the middle school coaches at Brunswick and Mt. Ararat.

   

If you are interested, go to the Midcoast Youth Hockey Association website (www.midcoasthockey.org) and click on 2015-2016 Registration (upper right hand corner of home page).  From here, choose “CLICK HERE to go to USA Hockey Registration.”  This will re-direct you to the USA Hockey website.  You will need to register with this organization first.  Once this registration is complete, you will receive a USA Hockey confirmation number. If your skater is already registered with USAH you should be able to use the existing registration number to register with us.

 

Then return to the Midcoast Youth Hockey Association Registration page.  If you are not already signed up as a Sports Ngin member, you will need to do so before proceeding.  Once complete, you will be able to complete the final steps of the registration process.  Be sure to elect the “2015-2016 Girls Junior High Supplemental Practice Only” option.
 

Once registered please email us so that we can initiate discussions about proper placement. Please email or call either Benet Pols or Cathy Hayes, our contact information is on the website.

 

Welcome Back! Registration is open for 2015-2016

 

Hockey fans,

The Midcoast Junior Polar Bears Hockey registration website is ready! Registration is up and running. In the meantime please take a look at the updated program descriptions tab on our website, as there are several changes for 2015-16 season. As is always the case all players need to register with USAH before signing up; there is a fee ($52) for this which goes to the national and state organizations to cover some important shared costs, including insurance.

Some highlights include:

Fees: LTPH will be free for first year players. Learn more by reading our program descriptions.

Schedule: LTPH and Mini-mites will start in early November. Mites, Squirts and Peewees will begin at Watson Arena on Sunday afternoon, October 4th. Once again, the October practices will include skills sessions with Bowdoin Hockey Assistant Coach Jamie Dumont. The complete October schedule will be posted on the website soon. In November we lose the weeknight ice at Bowdoin; Squirts and Peewees will have separate practices on Mondays and Thursdays nights at reasonable times at NSB Auburn.

Pricing: We have reviewed revenues and costs for each division and have made some minor adjustments to ensure that each division pays its own way, but not more. At only about $7/hour per skater on average, we know that MCYH offers the best value of any hockey association in the area.

There is lots of additional information on the website and we will hold parent meetings early in the season with additional information. We look forward to seeing you at the rink soon!

Sincerely,
MCYH Board

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    Sponsored by The Brunswick Hotel & Tavern

    The Brunswick Hotel & Tavern

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    At the top of the hill in Brunswick, just opposite the First Parish Church and Bowdoin College, The Brunswick Hotel and Tavern joins us a jersey sponsor for 2015-16. Relax in the Heart of Downtown Brunswick.

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    Five County Credit Union sponsored us last season at the "Hat Trick" level so we are very happy to have them join us again this season as Team Jersey Sponsors!

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    Lee Auto Malls

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    Joining us as a Hat Trick Sponsor for the 2015-16 season, Lee Toyota and Lee Nissan of Topsham have been familiar with the Midcoast Area for a long time.

    2015-16 Goal Sponsors

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    Creating sustainable, healthy buildings for Southern Maine since 1994

     

    Mailing Address
    Taggart Construction
    PO Box 255
    Freeport, ME  04032

    Office Location
    Taggart Construction
    10 South Street
    Freeport, ME  04032

    Phone
    207-865-2281

    Email
    info@tagcon.com ‣

    Sponsored by McTeague Higbee

    McTeague Higbee

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    McTeague Higbee, Lawyers, Allies, and Advocates for Maine People for over Thirty Years, joins us in 2015-16 as a Goal! sponsor. Thank you!

    Sponsored by Lynch & Newman, LLC

    Lynch & Newman, LLC

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    FHC

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    The Little Dog Coffee Shop, 87 Maine Street in Brunswick, is open 6:00 AM on Saturdays amd 7:00 AM Sundays. That's plenty of time to get yourself something good for breakfast before the kids hit the ice. Thanks for joining us Little Dog!
     

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    The Great Impasta

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    The Great Impasta, at 42 Maine Street in Brunswick, joins us as a wrist shot sponsor for 2015-16. A Brunswick institution since 1984, the Great Impasta serves lunch and dinner. Thank you!

    Sponsored by Country Fare, Inc

    Country Fare, Inc

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    Country Fare Inc is a full service commercial site work and road construction company that can also supply all of your aggregate needs.
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    Sponsored by Lisbon Community Federal Credit Union

    Lisbon Community Federal Credit Union

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    "Building Futures, Preserving Dreams." Thank you Lisbon Community Federal Credit Union for joining us in 2015-16 as a wrist-shot sponsor!

    Sponsored by Wally J. Staples, Builders, Inc.

    Wally J. Staples, Builders, Inc.

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    Quality builders since 1993. Thank you Wally J. Staples for joining us as a slap-shot sponsor!

    Sponsored by WellTree, Inc

    WellTree, Inc

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    Thank you to a new Wrist-shot level sponsor for 2015-16, WellTree, Inc.

    Whether your trees need pruning, or storm damage prevention or cleanup, insect & disease management or limb and tree removals, WellTree has the certified tree care specialists to get the job done right.

    Sponsored by G & E Roofing Company

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    Quality roofing services at a fair price for building owners throughout Central and Southern Maine.
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    2014-15 Jersey Level Sponsors

    Sponsored by Cumberland County Sheriff's Office

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    Roxanne York Real Estate

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    Building Trust in Buyers and Sellers
    2364 Harpswell Island Road
    Bailey Island, ME 04003 US

    Sponsored by Rusty's Market

    Rusty's Market

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    38 Middlesex Rd
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    (207) 729-9411

    Sponsored by Eaton Peabody - Attorneys at Law

    Eaton Peabody - Attorneys at Law

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    167 Park Row # 1
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    (207) 729-1144

    2014-15 Hat Trick Level Sponsors

    Sponsored by Five County Credit Union

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    2014-15 Slap Shot Level Sponsors

    Sponsored by G. M. Wild Construction

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    2014-15 Wrist Shot Level Sponsors

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    Midcoast Orthodontics

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    (207) 729-8756

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    (207) 443-4616

    Sponsored by G&E Roofing Company

    G&E Roofing Company

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