Volume 7 Issue 16 | January 1, 2020
2020 COACH OF THE YEAR NOMINATIONS
2020 STATE, DISTRICT & NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP INFORMATION
Attention Tier II Presidents & Team Managers
By Gregg Chudacoff, AHAI Tier II Chairman  - Tier II club presidents and team managers, please be aware that registration for the Tier II Illinois State Hockey Championships ends on Sunday, January 5, 2020. Please  click here  for these dates and more Tier II State tournament information.
2020 ADULT STATE CHAMPIONSHIP TOURNAMENT
Men's & Women's 2020 AHAI Adult State Championship Tournament
By Robert Fiorio, Adult State Tournament Director - The Amateur Hockey Association Illinois, Inc. is proud to present the 2020 AHAI Adult State Championship Tournament hosted by the AHAI Adult Committee and The Edge Ice Arena. The Adult State Tournament will take place April 23 - April 26, 2020 with all Championship Games taking place on Sunday, April 26, 2020 at The Edge.  For more information and/or registration please click here or contact Robert Fiorio, Tournament Director at rfiorio4@yahoo.com.
DECEMBER TOP 5 PHOTO WINNERS
Your votes have been counted and the Top 5 Photos for December have been selected! Congratulations to our five (5) winners! Click HERE to view the 17 finalists and visit AHAI's Facebook Page to see all the photos submitted in December!
"Bringing Home the Hardware"
Naperville Sabres 10U
"Airborne"
Yellowjackets A1
"He Shoots...He Scores"
Hunter Long, St. Jude Squirt 2
"Eyes on the Prize"
Emma Kooistra, St. Jude Mite A1
"Big Save"
Edmund Vogrich, Brother Rice Varsity
We can't wait to see your January photos! Send us pics of your awesome backyard rinks, outdoor pond hockey games, hockey-themed snowmen, or of your AHAI player's cellys, saves, slapshots, dekes and dangles. Click HERE for contest details.
USA HOCKEY NEWS & INFORMATION
USA Hockey Announces Free Hockey Registration Systems
USA Hockey proudly announces the release of Free Hockey Registration Systems [USAH Member Organizations Only]. As part of our digital transformation road map we are now able to provide free solutions to our member organizations helping them manage local events and saving them thousands in processing fees. Email us at: myevents@usahockey.org to sign up! WATCH VIDEO>>
2019 ILLINOIS HOCKEY HALL OF FAME BIO SERIES
Rich Jecmen - Builders' Category
Rich was born in Oak Park and raised in North Riverside by his loving parents, Ray and Irene Jecmen. He is the youngest of 3 children. As public rinks were hard to come by, his passion for hockey was formed on the rivers, creeks, and ponds in his neighborhood. Organized hockey was not feasible for the family during these times. Pick-up games and midnight hockey were the only option.  In the spring of 1978, he was asked by a friend if he would coach the Riverside Brookfield high school hockey team during their inaugural spring season. He gladly accepted and ended up leading the team to the spring league championship. He also stayed on as an assistant coach through their fall season. READ MORE>>
Illinois Hockey Hall of Fame Induction Dinner Ticket Information
The 2019 IHHF Induction Dinner will be held on Sunday, January 26, 2020 at the Belvedere Banquet Hall located at 1170 West Devon Avenue in Elk Grove Village beginning at 5:00 pm. Tickets are available by contacting Norm Spiegel at 847/269-2922 or email Norm at jacole@comcast.net.
ASK THE OFFICIAL BY DAVE ZEDNIK
Question: An Official blows his whistle to stop play. The players around the puck do not hear the whistle and the play continues. During this time, a player commits an infraction that calls for a minor penalty. Should the Referee assess the penalty even though play was supposed to have stopped prior to the infraction? ANSWER>>

Question: Should pegs (anchors) be used in 10U (squirt) and below games? ANSWER>>
CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS NEWS
AHAI Congratulates the December BMO Harris Bank Youth Hockey Award Winners!
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. AHAI congratulates December's Award Winners: Player:  Zander Marino of the D155 Predators Varsity team, Volunteer:  Laura Fransen of the Oak Park Ice Bears, and Coach: Jeff Muffitt of the Hoffman Estates Wolf Pack.  December's youth hockey award winners were recognized at the Chicago Blackhawks vs. Minnesota Wild game on Sunday, December 15th.

Want to nominate a deserving player, coach or volunteer? Click HERE for complete details and nomination form.
GIRLS' HOCKEY HEADLINES
Be a Part of the 2020 America's Showcase Team!
Attention all sophomore, junior or senior high school age girls! If you have not yet committed to a college/university, America's Showcase could be exactly what you need to help you reach the next chapter of your life.  If you're wanting to play hockey in college, please consider registering for the 2020 Illinois Girls' Showcase Team. Many NCAA DIII and ACHA coaches and scouts will be on hand in St. Louis looking for players to round out their teams. It's never too early to register. Please  click here to review the invitation and Showcase information. If you have any questions, please contact Anita Lichterman, Illinois Girls' Showcase Team Manager at girls@ahai2.org or 847.414.5737.
HIGH SCHOOL HOCKEY HEADLINES
Naperville Central: A "Team of Passion," Focused on the Future
By Ross Forman - Naperville Central is building for the future to revive the success of its past.  The Redhawks went 18-26 last season, the first under head coach Jack Wood who, despite a decade of coaching experience, was in his rookie season at the high school level.  It was a feeling out process - for the players and Wood, who did not participate in high school hockey as a player.  It also was the season to lay the foundation of a new future. READ MORE>>
Blackhawk Alumni Association Scholarship Application
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. Please click here  to download the application . If you have any questions regarding the scholarship, please direct them to Tom Dillon at  tom.dillon@amwins.com .
ILLINOIS HOCKEY HEADLINES
U.S. Men's Deaf Ice Hockey Team Wins Gold in Italy!
Team USA took Gold at the 2019 Deaflympics in Valtellina - Valchiavenna, Italy on December 21, 2019. AHAI congratulates  Team USA and Illinois' Tyler Balcerak, Max Finley, Anders Lindgren, Derek Struwing, Luke Peinado and Ryne Krueger!  For more information on Deaf/Hard of Hearing Hockey and the American Hearing Impaired Hockey Association (AHIHA), please  click here .
Rosters Set For 2020 BioSteel All-American Game, Includes Illinois' Hank Kempf & Wyatt Schingoethe
USA Hockey recently announced the rosters for the  BioSteel All-American Game, which will take place Jan. 20 at  USA Hockey Arena in Plymouth, Michigan.  The game, formerly known as the USA Hockey All-American Prospects Game, is a joint effort between USA Hockey, the USHL and NHL. Two Illinois natives were named to the Team USHL roster: Hank Kempf (Chicago) of the Muskegon Lumberjacks and Wyatt Schingoethe (Algonquin) of the Waterloo Black Hawks. READ MORE>>
NEWS YOU CAN USE
What Does Being Coachable Mean?
By Greg Bates, Special to AHAI - When Brad Bialas first started coaching his triplet daughters when they were picking up hockey, there was quite a learning curve.  "What I quickly realized is that there's different experiences for every player, and not every player wants to go D-I thus not every kid needs to be coached like they're going D-I," Bialas said. That being said, 16-year-olds Ashley, Sydney and Sarah Bialas have taken different paths in their hockey careers. Each of the sisters has required, and desired, a slightly different curriculum plan on and off the ice. READ MORE>>
Looking for a Way to Promote Your Summer Hockey Camp?
AHAI will publish two (2) special edition hockey camp newsletters in 2020 - one in March and one in May. These newsletters will feature upcoming hockey camps throughout Illinois. Ad space will be available on a first come, first serve basis and subject to AHAI approval.

Also new this year: our "Hockey Camps & Schools" tab on www.ahaienews.com.  For just $100, your  camp will receive its own page (subject to AHAI approval) which will be listed on the drop-down menu under the "Hockey Camps & Schools" tab. Camps are allowed 2 different flyers per year. Any additional flyer changes are $50 per flyer. Interested in more information? Contact AHAI Communications Manager, Gretchen Cockey at communications@ahai2.org .
Registration for 2020 NAHL Combines Now Open!
The North American Hockey League (NAHL) has the announced the dates and locations for the 2020 Combines, which are now open for registration. The NAHL Combines are driven by the North American Hockey League and operated by the NAHL's professional staff in order to serve the most valuable asset to hockey... the players. 
 
The goal is to provide the aspiring hockey player to take part in a one-of-a-kind experience that is designed to maximize exposure at grand-scale events that provide a true look and feel of the genuine NAHL Experience. NAHL Combines are carefully designed to provide an Education, Exposure, and Experience for prospects that strive to advance their hockey development at the junior hockey and college level. MORE INFORMATION & REGISTRATION>>
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
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