Volume 5 Issue 19 |  January 31, 2018
Illinois Hockey Hall of Fame Inducts Nine New Members into the Class of 2017!
Nearly 250 people were present as the Illinois Hockey Hall of Fame (IHHF) recently inducted its 13th class of inductees into its Hall of Fame. The honored inductees who were inducted on Sunday, January 28, 2018 at the Belvedere Banquet Hall in Elk Grove were (pictured above back row top left) Rich Blight, Jackie Juliar (for deceased Terry Juliar), Peter Moffat, Gino Cavallini, Harrison Aybar (for Rafe Aybar), Steve Poapst (Front row Left, Jerry Ballard, Carla Juliar (for deceased Terry Juliar), Sheri Wolfe, Made Aybar (for Rafe Aybar) and Jim Neville.

Illinois hockey has a very long and rich hockey history, due in large part, to the foundation laid down by these inductees. Their tireless dedication in making sure every individual who had a desire to participate in this great sport has had the opportunity to do so.

The mission statement of the Illinois Hockey Hall of Fame is as follows: "To honor the excellence of those individuals who, through their exceptional endeavors both on and off the ice, have contributed in an extraordinary way to enhance the sport and image of hockey in Illinois." READ MORE>>

Bigger and Better Disabled Hockey Festival Returns to Chicagoland
By Greg Bates, Special to AHAI ~ A lot has changed since the Disabled Hockey Festival was last in Chicago.  There were about 450 participants at the third annual event in 2006-07. This April, the total number of athletes is expected to top 1,500 in this, the 14th year.  There were four hockey disciplines - sled, special, standing/amputee and deaf/hard of hearing - back in the mid-2000s. This year, there are six disciplines: the same four as a decade earlier, plus the addition of Warrior hockey and blind hockey.  Also, the third festival was held over one weekend. This year, for the first time ever, it will stretch across two weekends.  It's a monumental year for the 14th annual Toyota-USA Hockey Disabled Hockey Festival, and organizers believe it will be the best event to date.  FULL ARTICLE>>

The 2018 Disabled Hockey Festival Needs YOUR Help!
2018 Coach of the Year Nominations Are Now Open!
AHAI recognizes that Illinois Hockey is comprised not only of incredible players, but also of great Ccaches that guide our teams both on and off the ice. Candidates for AHAI's Boys'/Girls' High School and Youth/Girls' Hockey Coach of the Year Awards should embody good sportsmanship and respect toward teams, parents and officials while providing a positive High School or Youth/Girls' Hockey experience. Candidates should also teach positive life skills while demonstrating dedication, passion and commitment to community. Deadline to nominate is Friday, February 16, 2018. NOMINATE COACH NOW>>
Ask AHAI: Checking Clinics
QUESTION: Isn't there an AHAI Checking clinic?

ANSWER: There is no Bantam checking clinic requirement within AHAI's rules. I think you are looking for the NIHL requirement for said clinic - NIHL does have a requirement to attend a checking clinic before playing Bantam-age hockey.  FULL ANSWER>>
Your votes have been counted and the Top 5 Photos for January have been selected! Congratulations to our winners! Click HERE to view our 17 Finalists and visit AHAI's Facebook Page to see all photos submitted in January
"Big Win in Texas"
Malcolm Paris
Skokie Flyers Squirt 1
  Click  HERE  for details on the February Photo of the Month Contest! Deadline to enter is Wednesday, February 21st at 5pm.
"Welcome to My Zone"
Mason Wright
Peoria 12U All Stars
Alex Macri
HF Vikings Mite
"Hockey vs. Mother Nature"
Siena Kropp
Wilmette Girls 12U
"Congratulations, Kid!"
TJ Nyhan
St. Jude Knights 12U
Our Countdown to State Newsletter is coming to your inbox on Friday, February 16th! 
AHAI, along with the Chicago Blackhawks, announce the 2018 Illinois State High School Hockey Championships, presented by Chicagoland and Northwest Indiana Chevy Dealers, will be played at the United Center on Saturday, March 24, 2018.

The Boys State Championship tilt, which begins at 3 p.m. at the United Center, will be broadcast live on NBC Sports Chicago and streamed live on and via the NBC Sports app. The event will feature a full day of action with the Illinois Girls' State Championship at 11:30a), the Boys' Red Division State Championship at 3:00pm and the Boys' Combined Division State Championship at 5:00pm. COMPLETE DETAILS>
USA Hockey Mourns Loss of Jim Johannson
Jim Johannson , a longtime USA Hockey executive and U.S. Olympic men's hockey general manager, died last week unexpectedly at age 53. "Jim's positive influence was enormous and will be felt for generations to come," said Jim Smith, president of USA Hockey. "He was widely respected across the world and his genuine nature helped advance our sport in so many ways. Today, we are a medal contender every time we put a team on the ice for international competition, and he played a major role in helping us get to that point. Our heartfelt condolences go out to his entire family. "It's a sad day for all of us.  The hockey world will miss an outstanding, passionate and unique leader and former player, who was admired and respected by everyone world-wide, stated Franz Reindl," president of the German Ice Hockey Federation.  We ask that you keep his wife Abby and daughter Ellie in your thoughts and prayers.
USA National Sled Team Faces Off Feb. 23 & 24 at West Meadows Ice Arena
The USA National Sled Hockey Team that will compete for the Gold Medal at the Paralympics Games in PyeongChang, South Korea in mid-March will have two exhibition games against the USA Sled Development team on Friday, February 23, 2018 at 8:00 p.m. and Saturday, February 24, 2018 at 8:30 p.m. at the West Meadows Ice Arena located at 3939 Winnetka Avenue in Rolling Meadows, Illinois. READ MORE>>
Meet Gino Cavallini ~ Class of 2017 Players' Category
Gino was born and raised in Toronto, Canada where he played all his youth and junior hockey. He then went on to play Division 1 hockey for Bowling Green State University. Under the coaching of Jerry York, Bowling Green won their only national championship. Gino scored the winning goal in the 4th overtime, ending one of the longest championship games on record. After the success of his sophomore season, Gino signed as a free agent with the Calgary Flames - there he would be coached by legendary "Badger" Bob Johnson until he was traded to St. Louis in February of '86. READ FULL BIO>>
Chicago Blackhawk Alumni Association Scholarship 
The Chicago Blackhawk Alumni Association (CBAA) distributes college scholarships annually to the three most deserving high school hockey players. 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. Recipients will receive an annual $7,500.00 scholarship over four years for a total of $30,000.  Fully completed applications including letter of recommendations, and scholar essays are due no later than February 1st of each year. MORE INFORMATION & APPLICATION>>
29th Annual AHAI All-State Rosters Announced
For the past 28 years, AHAI has been conducting a High School All-State game for the boys and girls varsity divisions statewide. This year will mark the 29th year of this very special event. The  2018 Boys High School All-State game  and the  2018 Girls High School All-State game  will be played on Monday, February 12, 2018 at the Edge Ice Arena in Bensenville, Illinois. The Girls' game will start at 6:40 p.m. and the Boys' game will begin at 8:35 p.m.  Admission to the High School Hockey All-State Games is  FREE . Can't make the game?  Thanks to our sponsors, Tier 1 Athletic Performance and Howies Hockey Tape, AHAI will stream  both games live from The Edge!
Click HERE to view Girls' Rosters
Click HERE to view Boys' Rosters
Ross Forman's Predictions for the 2018 Illinois State High School Hockey Championships 
The state tournament brackets have been released, so we now have just under two more months of memories to fill the 2017-18 season, culminating Saturday, March 24, at the United Center.  New Trier Green is the defending 2017 State Champion in the Red Division, and the Trevians are seeded No. 2 this season.  Loyola Gold has decades of pressure on its shoulders, as the Ramblers haven't won state in more than 20 years, despite immense amounts of talent over the years and plenty of shots in the title tilt. These Ramblers are the No. 1-ranked team in the state.  READ MORE>>
Ross Forman's 2018 Boys & Girls High School Hockey Season Award-Winners 
Hugh Brady is one of the main reasons Loyola Gold earned the No. 1-seed in the top-tiered Red Division of the 2018 Illinois State High School Hockey Championships, as the goalie boasted a 16-0 record in Scholastic League play this season, including an 8-0 win over Fenwick on Jan. 23.  Brady earned the boys' hockey Goalie of the Year Award.  Runner-up: Ian Moran, Glenbard. FULL ARTICLE>>
Metro Girls League Update
By Pam Flores ~ There are still many games to be played in the second half of the season, but currently Glenbrook is on top of the Scholastic Division with 8 points. Close behind is New Trier Varsity and Fenwick with 4 points each. On top of the leader board in the Founders Division is Latin with 6 points, followed by Warren with 5 points and Maine with 3 points. FULL UPDATE>>
Hockey Has Helped Mission 18U Defenseman Spitzer 'Cope' with His Mom's Passing 
By Ross Forman ~ Everything has been difficult for about the past year for Will Spitzer, a senior at Stevenson High School who plays defense for the Chicago Mission Midget 18U team.  Going to school, going to practice, and playing games. Everything is challenging, everything is difficult, and everything is a reminder. Everything, every day.  It was about a year ago when his mom, Erin Pinsler, was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer.  She passed away this past May 5. READ MORE>>
2018 Hobey Baker Memorial Award Nominees Include 7 Illinois Players! 
The Amateur Hockey Association of Illinois is proud to share that Peter Tischke, Ryan Wagner, Brennan Kapcheck, Stefanos Lekkas, Louis Belpedio, Hugh McGing and Tanner Laczynski are part of the distinguished list of nominees for the 2018 Hobey Baker Memorial Award. This year's Hobey Baker Award winner will be announced Friday, April 6, 2018 from St. Paul, MN during the NCAA Frozen Four. The 38th annual announcement will be streamed on the Hobey website. VOTE>>
Blackhawks Elite Hockey Academy:  Blackhawks Elite Hockey Academy is designed to provide opportunities for players who have a strong desire to reach a higher level of competition and skill development. All camps will be held at MB Ice Arena.  MORE INFORMATION>>

Blackhawks Summer Camps:  The Chicago Blackhawks youth hockey camps are summer programs for youth hockey players using top-notch coaches and former Blackhawks players. The camps provide both on- and off-ice instruction for hockey players of all skill levels. 2018 camps dates have been released!  MORE INFORMATION>>
BMO Harris Bank January Player, Coach & Volunteer
The Chicago Blackhawks and BMO Harris Bank are proud to honor members of the hockey community. Each month during the regular season they recognize the excellence of a youth hockey player, coach and volunteer.  January's Award Winners are Robert Wagner (Volunteer) - IHSHL NC Division & BG/H/W High School Hockey, Josh Niday (Coach) - Rockford Hockey Club, and Betsy O'Grady (Player) - North Shore Warhawks.

Want to nominate a deserving player, coach or volunteer? Click HERE for complete details.
The Eddie Olczyk Award:  The Chicago Blackhawks and Chicago Blackhawk Foundation are proud to present an award named after U.S. Hockey Hall of Famer Eddie Olczyk to support young hockey players and teams in Illinois who may not have the means to play at a competitive level. Applications are now open!  APPLY TODAY>>

Eddie Olczyk Helmet Decals:  For all you young hockey players out there! The Chicago Blackhawks have produced helmet decals for your favorite youth hockey ambassador and broadcaster, Eddie Olczyk as he continues his fight against cancer.  PLACE AN ORDER>>
IceHogs "Easterseals Youth Hockey Player of the Game"
Do you know a young hockey player who exhibits good sportsmanship, leadership as well as love and passion for the game both on and off the ice? Nominate them NOW to be the Rockford IceHogs "Easterseals Youth Hockey Player of the Game!" Players can be nominated online at The "Easterseals Youth Hockey Player of the Game" will then be recognized at an IceHogs game during the 2017-18 season, and will receive: four (4) tickets to the game, a commemorative certificate, an opportunity to be a part of the countdown before the players take the ice and a chance to watch warmups on the glass! For more information please contact McKenna Ryan at 815.847.6386 or
NorthShore offers same-day, convenient care for everything from the common flu to urgent sports injuries. Having options is great, but how do you decide which facility is the right choice for your needs? Athletic Trainer Dan Goggin discusses how to choose between visiting an Immediate Care center, Ortho Walk-In Clinic or the Emergency Department. READ MORE>>
The Makeup of Successful Athletes ~ Part I
By Jared McGriff-Culver, Director of Training, Tier 1 Athletic PerformanceSuccessful athletes come in all shapes and sizes. However, most great athletes have characteristic that help shape their success. Today we are offering part one of a two-part series on those characteristics. How many attributes does your athlete possess? READ MORE>>