As you know, tryouts for the 2019-2020 Ridgefield Amateur Hockey Association travel season begins Monday, March 11th. This correspondence will hopefully clarify the process, answer some of your questions and emphasize some great new additions to the coming season’s Lions’ program.
Day 3 Sunday 4/14, 11:20 AM – 12:20 PM/12:30 – 1:30 PM
On the FIRST day of tryouts, players will be divided by Last name—
A to M last names report to the earlier session, and
N to Z last names report to the later session.
All players will be assigned pinnie numbers the first day of tryouts and will keep those numbers throughout the tryout sessions. By the morning of the second day of tryouts, the players will be reassigned to earlier or later sessions according to pinnie number and color, and those reassignments will be posted on RAHA’s home page, prior to the next day’s tryout time.
Additional Programs & Tuition for the 2019 – 2020 Season
RAHA is pleased to announce several key additions to next season’s program:
We will be adding additional ice each week for all players. Now RAHA players will have the opportunity to skate 5+ times per week throughout the season
We will be improving the skills sessions by adding a Pre-Season Training Camp to start the season. This 5 day camp for Mites – Midgets will kick off the season for all rostered RAHA players and goalies. This camp will be run by Sully’s Hockey Academy and allow skaters to get as much as 450 minutes of ice during the RAHA camp week.
Additionally, we are using Sully’s Hockey Academy to deliver our 9-week skills sessions to kick off the first third of the season.
Lastly, we are adding another hour of ice at each age level to give players additional time to work on skills with coaches.
Continuing with last season, the Peewee and Bantam AA teams will compete in the Eastern Junior Elite Prospect League (EJEPL), exposing players to elite competition. This will be an additional cost to those who accept positions on these two RAHA teams.
Tuition for the 2019-2020 Season
Mites - $2,650.00 ($50.00 discount if paid by check)
$1,150.00 billed due 8/31/19
Squirts, Peewees, Bantams - $4,550.00 ($50.00 discount if paid by check)
$2,050.00 billed due 8/31/19
Midgets - $1,950.00 ($50.00 discount if paid by check)
$1,025.00 billed due 8/31/19
Coaching for 2019-2020
We are pleased to announce the following confirmed coaches for the 2019-2020 season. We believe RAHA is able to offer the finest coaching in the area, continuing a long tradition of building skills through the age levels and producing game-winning talent at the highest levels.
(Please note, the final number of teams cannot be known until the process is complete. We will do our best to carry as many teams as possible based on numbers, acceptances and travel skill level.)
U18 - Sean Sullivan and Easton Oliver
U16 - TJ Cline and Chris Siefert Midget
U18 Open -TBD
AA - Peter Bafundo (head coach), Mike Schneider (assistant coach)
A - Gil Alicea
A1 - Matt Savona
AA - Andy Marchison (head coach), Mike Schneider (assistant coach)
A - Dan Murtha
A1 - Mark Elliott
B - Mike Bruno
AA - Hunter Alicea
A - Nate Allen
A1 - Michele Gintoli
B - TBD
Mite program director: Sean "Sully" Sullivan
A,B,C team coaches to be finalized: Cathy Bonner (Skating) Gary Bingham, TBD
Prior to EVERY session of tryouts, the head coaches will talk to the players and lay out how the session process will go, the skills they are looking for, and how each session will proceed. We ask that all players be dressed and ready to listen 20 minutes prior to scheduled ice times.
The coaches of each age group will determine what each session of tryouts entails. Age level coaches are not on the ice during tryouts, but observing and making assessments from behind the glass and in the stands. There will be on-ice coaches to direct the players through drills, small games, and scrimmages.
For the Midget, Bantam and Peewee level players, there will be some portion of tryouts during which players will be divided to assess offense/defense-specific skill-sets.
Lastly, there will be an independent evaluator at every session, who will evaluate all players and provide unbiased feedback regarding player performance and score for each session. Please do not approach the independent evaluator to discuss any aspect of the process while we are in tryouts.
Following each tryout session, coaches and the independent evaluator will review every player’s performance score and reassign players by pinnie number for the following day’s tryouts.
Goalies will be independently assessed by Mark Elliott during the goalie-specific tryouts and additionally reviewed by team coaches during their age level tryouts. Goalies MUST attend both tryout formats.
All players will be assessed based on standard hockey skills—skating, stick-handling, passing, shooting, competitiveness, etc. and by the less tangible standards of hockey sense, coachability and character.
The Player Evaluation forms that your coaches completed for each player for the 2018-2019 season and returned to each RAHA member are NOT a component of the tryout evaluation. They were instituted this year in hopes that it would give players and their parents an idea of how your coach views each team member’s strengths and weaknesses. This past season’s coaches were additionally asked to rank their team’s players by birth year, and those rankings will be available during the team selection process.
Every year members of the board are assigned as Age Level Directors (ALDs) and to ensure fairness they are assigned to an age level that the ALD DOES NOT have a child/player trying out. This year’s assignments are:
Midgets —Eric Presbrey, Patrick Walsh and Elizabeth Zimels
Bantams — Hilary Kao and Jared Kurtz
Peewees — Kim Hulber, Danielle Scesa and Patrick Walsh
Squirts —Eric Presbrey and Kevin White
Mites —Hilary Kao and Danielle Scesa
Age Level Directors facilitate evaluations, gather and process data specific to player placement, and present the teams once chosen by the Coaches based on their tryout observations and the independent evaluator input. The ALDs do not choose players for team placement, however, they do confirm, approve and communicate the final rosters out to RAHA families and players.
RAHA will make best efforts to stay within the USA Hockey recommendations for bench depth,
Midgets (U16, U18)
Please note, final team sizes are ultimately left to the ALD’s and head coach’s discretion.
Notification and Acceptance
For the Squirt, Peewee and Bantam levels, the AA teams will be chosen and notified by phone, within several hours after the end of the last tryout session. Players will have 24 hours in which toaccept or decline their positions.
The A, A1 and B team assignments will be assigned and posted within 48 hours of the end of tryouts. Team assignments, by pinnie number, will be posted on the RAHA home page. These players and will also have 24 hours in which to decline their team placement. Players wishing to decline will need to notify their specific ALD by email, and their deposit checks will be destroyed or returned. For those accepting a team position, there is no need to contact RAHA, and their deposit checks will be deposited.
The RAHA Lion Pride: What to expect for the 2019-2020 season
The season kicks off AUGUST 19TH, 2019 with a week of "skills boot camp" led by Sully’s Hockey Academy. The kids will be participating in on-ice, office and video “chalk-talk” sessions.
On-ice team practices commence the week of 8/26/19,
We will continue to provide USA Hockey sanctioned and professionally coached dry-land conditioning, and Goalies will continue to receive coaching from the fine folks at ProCrease.
For the first nine weeks of the season, there will be one night dedicated to Sully’s skills sessions in addition to regularly scheduled practices.
For the remainder of the season there will be a third night of coach-directed ice time used to focus on specific skills.
We hope that this information packet has been helpful, and please reach out with any questions or comments.
As hard as it is to believe, we are approaching the homestretch of the 2018-2019 season! Please see the below for the finalized tryout dates and times so you can mark your calendars. Please note, additional information regarding tryout process, criteria, and structure will be forthcoming
Mite, Squirt & Peewee Goalies
Monday March 11th 6:10-7:30 PM
Day 1- Saturday, March 9th 12:45-1:45 PM
Day 2- Sunday, March 10th 9:00-10:00 AM
Day 1- Tuesday March 12th 5:10-6:00/6:10-7:00 PM
Day 2- Wednesday March 13th 5:10-6:00/6:10-7:00 PM
Day 3- Saturday March 16th 12:45-1:45/2-3:00 PM
Day 4- Sunday March 17th 9:00-10:00/10:10-11:10 PM
Day 1- Thursday March 14th 6:40-7:30/7:40-8:30 PM
Day 2- Friday March 15th 6:40-7:30/7:40-8:30 PM
Day 3- Saturday March 16th 3:10-4:10/4:20-5:20 PM
Day 4- Sunday March 17th 11:20 AM-12:20/12:30-1:30 PM
Bantam checking clinic - TBD
Day 1- Wednesday April 10th 6:30-7:20/7:30-8:20 PM
Day 2- Thursday April 11th 6:30-7:20/7:30-8:20 PM
Day 3- Friday April 12th 6:30-7:20/7:30-8:20 PM
Midgets (Split Season)
Day 1- Wednesday April 10th 8:30-9:20 PM/9:30-10:20 PM
Day 2- Thursday April 11th 8:30-9:20/9:30-10:20 PM
Day 3- Sunday April 14th 11:20 AM-12:20/12:30-1:30 PM
Duncan Craine, Co-Captain of the Ridgefield Lions Bantam AA's was selected by the EJEPL to represent the Lions at the 2019 U14 All-Star Games, hosted by the Abe Stark Rink in Coney Island on Monday 1/21.
Duncan was one of 6 defensemen on the Blue team, partnered with a defenseman from Utah. He represented the Lions well, scoring 1 goal and 2 assists in the game.
A second-year Bantam, Duncan has been skating at the Winter Garden since Ice Mice and with RAHA since Mites.
For more info and pictures from the EJEPL U14 All Star game, check out: https://www.ejepl.net/news_article/show/987599