Volume 8 Issue 23 | April 7, 2021
Spring has sprung and so has Spring Hockey! Thankfully the 2020-2021 season is in the rear view mirror. Hopefully we will continue to improve and have nothing but better times ahead. Thanks to all of you who supported AHAI and continued your love of the game.

We recently had teams compete at Districts and are excited to follow the Illinois teams heading to USA Hockey's National Championships in mid- and late-April. Life is getting back to normal and so is hockey!

Be safe, keep your head up and your feet moving.

Kevin Bolger
AHAI President
Attention Affiliate Club and League Presidents: 2021 AHAI Annual Meeting Notification Letter
The 2021 Annual Meeting of the Amateur Hockey Association of Illinois, Inc. (AHAI) will take place virtually on Saturday, June 5, 2021 at 8:30 a.m. Further information regarding the Annual Meeting schedule will be distributed to Affiliate Presidents.

Any individual who wishes to submit their name as a candidate for the position as a Board of Director of AHAI must submit their name, in writing, to the Chairperson of the Nominating Committee, Bill Crowley at bill.crowley@ahai2.org no later than Saturday, April 24, 2021. A short biography stating the individual's background, hockey experience, etc. should be included. The Nominating Committee will then send to each Affiliate a list of all the candidates and their biographies prior to the AHAI Annual Meeting in accordance with the By-Laws, Rules and Regulations
(Interim Rule C:
Any individual who wishes to submit a new By-Law proposal or make a change to an existing By-Law must submit their proposal(s), in writing, to the President of AHAI, Kevin Bolger at president@ahai2.org, no later than Thursday, May 6, 2021. Thank you for all your help and cooperation in the furtherance of youth hockey in Illinois. - AHAI Board of Directors
Good Luck to the 8 Illinois Teams Competing at USA Hockey National Championships!

Girls Tier I
CYA 14U*

Girls Tier II
Naperville Sabres 14U
Northshore Warhawks 16U*
Northshore Warhawks 19U

Youth Tier II
Chicago Bulldogs 14U
Chicago Jets 16U
Orland Park Vikings 18U

High School
New Trier Green

Notes: The Girls Tier I National Championships will be held April 29 - May 3 in West Chester, PA. The Girls Tier II National Championships will be held April 29 - May 3 in Denver, CO. USA Hockey's National Championships will be April 29 - May 3 in Dallas, Texas for the Youth Tier II 14U, Grand Rapids, Michigan, for the Youth Tier II 16U and Green Bay, Wisconsin, for the Youth Tier II 18U Division. High School National Championships will be April 15-19 in Omaha, Nebraska. Click here for more information.

*Denotes 2021 Central District Champion
AHAI recognizes that Illinois Hockey is comprised not only of incredible players, but also of dedicated and talented High School, Youth, Girls and Disabled Hockey coaches who guide our teams both on and off the ice. In an especially challenging season, the role of coach was more important than ever. The 2021 recipients of AHAI's Coach of the Year Award embodied good sportsmanship and respect toward teams, parents and officials while providing a positive experience for their players. Congratulations to the coaches below who went above and beyond to provide a positive environment for development, both on and off the ice. 

Disabled Hockey Coach
Wayne Millard
Chicago Blackhawks
Special Hockey

Girls Hockey Coach
Rachael Cremer
Central Illinois Girls Hockey Association
Boys High School Coach
Chris Waters
Girls High School Coach
Del Morris
Evanston High School

Youth Hockey Coach
John "Grant" Werner
Geneva Cyclones
Congratulations go out to Chris Araujo of Hinsdale Central High School, Emilie Lindgren of Momence Community High School and Preston Watt of New Trier High School on being named the recipients of the 2021 Blackhawk Alumni Association Scholarship.

The Blackhawk Alumni Association (BHAA) distributes college scholarships annually to the three most deserving high school hockey players in Illinois. Awards are determined from a candidate's level of community service, volunteerism, good citizenship, academic performance as well as the hockey talent of the individual who receives an annual $7,000.00 scholarship over four years.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic there will not be an in-person Alumni Luncheon this year. The scholarship recipients will be honored at a private ceremony. All of us here in Illinois are proud of their accomplishments in the classroom, in the community and on the ice.
Ben Allison Legacy Memorial Scholarship Application Deadline is April 16th
This year marks the 6th anniversary of the Ben Allison Legacy Memorial Scholarship. Ben was a member of the Illinois Hockey Officials Association (IHOA) and USA Hockey's Officiating Development Program. He aspired to officiate in the NHL and was a student at Illinois State University where he studied broadcasting and journalism. Unfortunately, Ben was tragically taken from us in January of 2015, at the age of 20.

Ben was an outstanding official and an even better friend. Anyone that knew Ben would agree that he was the hardest working official both on and off the ice, and he always provided a positive outlook on life and officiating. In his honor and to celebrate his life and legacy, Ben's parents set up a scholarship for officials within the Central District who are either graduating high school or are within their first year of college. If you meet this criteria, we strongly encourage you to apply for this very prestigious scholarship. Application deadline is April 16 at midnight. If you have any other questions please contact adp@ihoa.com

Please click here to download/print the Ben Allison Legacy Memorial Scholarship application.
Ask the Official by Dave Zednik
Question: I have a Go-pro Camera mount on my helmet. I know as soon as you see it you're going to say it's illegal, but I have not made any physical modifications to the helmet. Nothing was cut or removed, and the integrity of the shell has not been compromised whatsoever. Answer>>

Question: What action should the referee take if a coach who has already been assessed a game misconduct refuses to move from his/her players bench? Answer>>
Another Dryden Excels in Goal
By Ross Forman - His hockey career has long been pressure-packed, on and off the ice. Dryden McKay is following the hockey path of his dad, Ross, who grew up in hockey-crazed Canada and boasts a resume that includes a stop in the National Hockey League. Ross also spent three seasons in goal in the minor leagues - in the ECHL, IHL and AHL. And why is he named Dryden? After one of the game's greatest of all-time, Ken Dryden, the Hockey Hall of Fame goalie who played his entire NHL career for the Montreal Canadiens. "I didn't really put it together - my name, my dad and being a goalie - until I was a little older. I first wanted to play hockey to spend time with my dad," said McKay, who was skating with his dad's help at 2 or 3, playing games at 4 or 5, and a full-time goalie with knowledge of his namesake at 8 or 9. READ MORE>>
After Starting Locally for the Stars, Caitlin Schneider Is Now a Star at the NCAA Level
By Ross Forman - Sylvain Turcotte remembers the determination of Caitlin Schneider, dating back to learn-to-skate lessons he taught her at age 3 or 4. If she fell, for instance, Schneider did everything to make sure she got right back up. Turcotte was then watching Schneider at age 6, skating for a Glenview Stars team, as Turcotte has been the longtime hockey director for the Glenview Park District, including the Stars. As a squirt, shooting to make the Glenview gold team, though, Schneider was cut, landing on the silver team. She was distraught. "Experiences like that shape you as a player, when you (have to) battle adversity. Moments like that really push you to be better," she said. "Those experiences for sure, and others, help guide me to where I am at now." READ MORE>>
Roster Announced for 2021 IIHF Women's World Championship
USA Hockey has announced its 25-player U.S. Women's National Team that will compete in the 2021 International Ice Hockey Federation Women's World Championship, May 6-16, in Halifax and Truro, Nova Scotia. The roster includes Illinois' Megan Bozek (Buffalo Grove), Savannah Harmon (Downers Grove), Jesse Compher (Northbrook) and Kendall Coyne Schofield (Palos Heights). READ MORE>>
2021 NCAA Division I Men's Ice Hockey Championship Rosters Include 22 Former Illinois Players
The NCAA Division I Men's Ice Hockey Committee selected 16 teams to participate in the 2021 NCAA Division I Men's Ice Hockey Championship in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. There were 22 former Illinois players on the initial 16 rosters (click here to view). Three (3) Illinois men will compete for a National Championship title this weekend: Dryden McKay (Downers Grove) of Minnesota State, Josh Lopina (Minooka) of Massachusetts and Kevin Fitzgerald (Hinsdale) of St. Cloud State. Click here for the Men's Frozen Four bracket. Good luck!
Even After Year with Little Hockey, Players Still Need an Offseason
By Greg Bates, Special to AHAI - The past year hasn't allowed kids many opportunities to play hockey. With shortened seasons now wrapping up and the fall seemingly a long time away, hockey is still on the minds of athletes. AHAI Coach-in-Chief Jim Clare stressed that young players shouldn't go overboard with hockey in the spring and summer to try and make up for lost time. "Most people are in the same boat," Clare said. "You aren't missing out if you are getting involved with your baseball, lacrosse or taking vacation and staying away from the rink. In fact, it's probably not a bad thing to do, give yourself a little break from all that craziness we went through." READ MORE>>
Mark Your Calendars! The 2021 AHAI Foundation Golf Outing Set for Friday, August 13
Join us for a fun-filled day! The 24th Annual AHAI Foundation Golf Outing will be held at the Schaumburg Golf Club on Friday, August 13, 2021 pending COVID restrictions on gatherings. The revenues generated from this event will be donated to Special Hockey, AHIHA (deaf/hard of hearing hockey), the Hornets Sled Hockey program, the IHOA Memorial Fund, the Blackhawks Warriors, Blind Hockey and the Catastrophic Relief Fund for players who have been catastrophically injured. We hope you can join us for this great annual event!