President’s Welcome Letter – 2019-2020 CCYHA Season
President’s Welcome Letter – 2019-2020 CCYHA Season
Hello, and I hope everyone is enjoying the summer. This will be my twelfth year as President of Central CT Youth Hockey and I am so proud to see the growth and success at all levels of our program. I know this is quite long, but it has some very important information in it, so please read.
This week marks the unofficial start of our season for our Squirt AA, PeeWee A and Bantam AA teams competing in their respective EJEPL showcases this upcoming weekend along with our U16 Tier 2 team competing in a preseason game against the Lancaster Firebirds. In one week, all of our teams will start our conditioning ice prior to the official start of the season. Please check the master schedule as it has been updated with conditioning ice and practices.
To our returning CCYHA families, welcome back. To our new CCYHA families, welcome to the program. I hope that you find Central to be your home organization for a long time to come. We are always excited to welcome new families and to watch our program grow as much as it has.
Central Connecticut Youth Hockey (CCYHA) is looking forward to another strong year at all levels. Our program is the largest travel organization in Connecticut and our success is built on the hard work and dedication from our Board Members, coaches, and parents who are dedicated and willing to provide their children an opportunity to play this great sport of hockey. Every year our players prove to have a strong work ethic and a desire to improve every time they step on the ice. It is our hope that this is the most successful year for all of our members on and off the ice. The sport is a great release from the everyday grind and the friendships developed through hockey are second to none.
We have worked very hard to get the best possible ice slots for all of our teams while also continuing with our goal of keeping consistent nights and times which has been very well received by the membership. With the number of teams we have at Central, this is no easy task. Newington Arena has partnered with us to ensure that the rink will remain a clean and safe environment for our members.
Hockey 1 Pro Shop from South Windsor Arena will once again run the pro shop at Newington Arena. We recommend you use them for your hockey purchases. Steve, at the Arena Grill, will once again be open for us. He has been a very strong supporter of our program so please support him.
Our division directors will be working with team coaches/managers/schedulers on scheduling games for our teams for the upcoming season. Each team will be challenged appropriately and our goal of seeing development throughout the organization should be reached through challenging practices and a competitive game schedule.
Season Opening Faceoff Party – Saturday September 7th from 9:00am to 1:00pm:
CCYHA will be hosting our ninth annual Season Opening Faceoff Party on Saturday September 7th at Newington Arena. In addition to all the fun events that we will have planned, we will also have a second warm up suit fitting for any players looking to order a warm up suit as well as a second uniform fitting for any players who may need new uniforms. We are putting together various activities to make this day fun for everyone. We will be having an open skate, equipment swap, a shooting contest (with prizes), bounce houses in the parking lot, a barbecue,.....plus more…….
ALL UNIFORMS AND WINDSUITS PREVIOUSLY ORDERED WILL BE GIVEN OUT DURING THIS EVENT
In season events:
Other events that we have planned throughout the season are our Annual Dinner Dance and Auction (date TBD) and our annual 3v3 Turkey Shootout, the night before Thanksgiving. CCYHA (all of our travel teams) will once again be participating in the Jingle Bell Tournament in Marlboro, MA from December 29 to January 1. This is a great opportunity to keep all of our families together over the holidays. The Jingle Bell Tournament is the only one, that I know of, that could accommodate our entire program. It is always a fun couple of days when we take over the Embassy Suites. The room blocks have been set up and the information is on the homepage of our website (www.centralcthockey.org).
CCYHA Helmet Program:
In continuing with our previous sponsorship through CT Childrens Medical Center’s Injury Prevention Center and Kohl’s Tween Safe Program, Central CT Youth Hockey will once again be outfitting our travel players with the Bauer Reakt helmet for the upcoming season. Any new player to CCYHA or new travel player will be receiving their helmet in early September.
Partnership with Future Fitness:
CCYHA has partnered with Future Fitness at Newington Arena and they will be providing weekly off ice training for our bantam and midget aged players throughout the season.
Partnership with ProCrease:
CCYHA has also partnered with ProCrease goaltender training for the upcoming season. ProCrease will be on the ice at two practices per month for each team to work with our goaltenders. ProCrease works with many youth goaltenders as well as high school, junior and college goalies.
Partnership with Hartford Wolfpack & UCONN Hockey:
Keep an eye on the CCYHA website throughout the season as many of our teams (travel, house and learn to play) participate in events before, during and after Hartford Wolfpack and UCONN games at the XL Center in Hartford. The Hartford Wolfpack and UCONN are strong supporters of youth programs in the community.
Skill Development Sessions with IPH:
CCYHA will have IPH (I Play Harder) running skills sessions during the season. These are small area station based session focusing on individual skills.
CCYHA Online Store:
The CCYHA online store will be run by Hamden Sports. They will have several order dates and emails will go out with that information and will have merchandise available at the season opening party and during the 3v3 turkey shootout.
Our Squirt AA, PeeWee A, and Bantam AA teams will be competing in the EJEPL, in addition to CHC. The EJEPL is made up of teams from all down the east coast spanning Maine to Florida. This league will provide an added challenge for our teams.
Capital Wolves Girls Program:
We partnered with West Hartford Youth Hockey to form a girls program that will compete in CHC and the CGHL. We feel that this will provide girls in our program a local home throughout their youth hockey years.
CCYHA House League:
With the continued growth of our House League, CCYHA has invested in cross ice boards from Becker Arena Products. These boards go across the red line and form two curved rinks on each side of the red line. This will give the players the feel of a real game environment in a cross ice setting and was received quite well by our house league players last year. The house league continues to be a strong asset for our program and will kick off in October.
CCYHA Learn To Play:
Each year our Learn to Play program grows and develops the future of our program. Over the past several years, the program has grown to new heights providing a mix of teaching and fun with the goal to provide these young players with the fundamentals of skating and playing hockey. This program kicks off in October.
CCYHA Board of Directors:
If you have any questions throughout the season, the appropriate members of the Board can be found under the contacts section of our website www.centralcthockey.org. Our board is made up of a great cast of volunteers, and as always, I would like to thank them for their commitment. Our Board is comprised of the following individuals:
Anthony Giusto (President)
Doug Partridge (VP of Development & Coaching)
Aaron Odell (Registrar)
Bryan Ruck (VP Admin & Ice)
Matt Peary (Treasurer)
Rich Faber (VP of Fundraising)
Traci Lynn Fox (Secretary)
Chuck Carey (Tournament Director)
Brian Smith (Learn to Play Director
Kevin Linskey (House League Director)
Matt Allatin (Mite Director)
Rob DeFilio (Squirt Director)
Val Calciano (PeeWee Director)
Bob Patz (Bantam Director)
Doug Partridge (Midget Director)
Steve Wall (Girls Director)
If you have questions throughout the season, please contact the appropriate board member.
When you see a title next to a board member’s name, know that a lot of hours are contributed from that member to make our program what it is.
Please make sure your kids are continually thanking their coaches as all are volunteers and give a lot of their time to help develop your kids. Finally, thank you to the parents who sacrifice so much during the hockey season so that your children can play this wonderful sport of hockey.
Best wishes for a great rest of the summer and a very successful 2019-2020 hockey season. LET’S GO CAPS!
Please join us for some fun at the CCYHA Season Opening Party on Saturday, September 7th from 9am - 12pm at Newington Arena. There will be games, bounce houses, street hockey (kids should bring a street hockey stick or old hockey stick), food, music and more. Our friends from the Hartford Wolfpack, Bridgeport Sound Tigers, Providence Bruins, Springfield Thunderbirds, New Britain Bees and the Hartford Athletic will be there too. There will be an area set up for an equipment swap and/or donation. All uniforms and tracksuits will be handed out during the event. Hamden Sports will also be there with a setup.
Come on out and celebrate the start of the 2019-2020 Central Capitals Youth Hockey season!
Three CCYHA teams took home medals at the Nutmeg State Games.
Our Bantam AA team won the bronze medal. In the opening round our bantams defeated West Haven 3-1 and the Whitie Bensen Selects 4-2 before falling to the Tomahawks Hockey Club 4-1. The Bantam AA's went on to defeat the Whitie Bensen Selects by a score of 3-1 to earn the Bronze Medal.
Our Squirt AA team won the gold medal. In the opening round our squirts defeated Western Jr Colonials 17-0, CT Gators 8-1 and CT Fighting Irish 9-3. The Squirt AA's went on to defeat the CT Fighting Irish by a score of 8-3 to earn the Gold Medal.
Our Midget U16/U18 team won the gold medal. In the opening round our U16/U18's defeated Hall Southington 4-3, Guilford 15-0 and GMSVA Storm Black 4-3. The U16/U18's went on to defeat the Wahoo's by a score of 1-0 to earn the Gold Medal.
Several years ago Central CT Youth Hockey and West Hartford Youth Hockey formed a partnership all-girls program called the Capital Wolves. If any girls are interested in playing on an all-girls house league team in the Central CT Youth Hockey House League, please see the information below:
Interested in playing on an all-girls House team this season, as a member of the Capital Wolves? Click here to pre-register and express interest for the upcoming season (no tuition/fees to be collected at this point).
We are currently planning for the upcoming season, including format, structure, schedule, etc., and understanding the interest levels will be extremely helpful in getting ahead of the upcoming season. We will communicate details of the program, as well as the official registration, in September.
About the House Program
U10 BLUE, our House team, is geared for like-skilled U10-aged girls who are new to travel hockey, or perhaps hockey in general, and will be designed to prepare the girls for full travel hockey at a higher level for seasons to come. The goal is to focus on hockey skill and skating development, team camaraderie, building confidence on the ice, and creating a team environment that is safe and fun for the girls. The team is targeted for U10-eligible ages (2009 and younger), but has been open to older birth-years based on experience, size, etc.
About the Capital Wolves
The Capital Wolves are part of both the West Hartford and Central Youth Hockey Associations. The organization was founded to take advantage of the numbers of girl players in both organizations, with the goal of developing area skaters on teams with like-skilled players, offering developmental and competitive travel teams. We have members on both boards, and both organizations provide leadership and administrative support for the Capital Wolves, including scheduling, finances, rostering, etc.
We're always looking for additional players to join us, new or experienced. If you want to learn more and can't find your answer on our site, contact us at
Each year, our entire travel program (Mite through Bantam) attends the Jingle Bell Tournament in Marlborough MA over New Year's. Our hotel is the Embassy Suites located a couple of miles from the New England Sports Center. The hotel is newly renovated and provides a full cooked to order breakfast each morning. I have set up our room blocks for this year and the blocks are done by age division. I know it is early to start thinking about a tournament in late December but the hotel will fill up.
CCYHA Summer 3v3 Drop In Ice Sessions - U16 & U18 Tier 2 Midgets
We have once again secured ice throughout the summer for anyone who would like to stay on the ice. The sessions are completely optional and will be 3v3 or 4v4 depending on the number of players attending. Sessions are set up with Tier 2 U16 & U18 skating together. The schedule could be found on the CCYHA Master Schedule or by going to CCYHA website, then select Team from top menu, Season 2019-2020, Travel, then select team.
Schedule is also listed below:
U16 & U18 TIER 2
Thu, Jun 6 07:50 PM - 08:50 PM Newington Blue
Thu, Jun 20 06:40 PM - 07:40 PM Newington Blue
Mon, Jul 1 08:25 PM - 09:25 PM Newington Red
Tue, Jul 16 07:40 PM - 08:40 PM Newington Red U16 ONLY - Possible Nutmeg State Games Practice
Tue, Jul 16 08:50 PM – 09:50 PM Newington Red U18 ONLY - Possible Nutmeg State Games Practice
Thu, Jul 18 07:40 PM - 08:40 PM Newington Red U16 ONLY - Possible Nutmeg State Games Practice
Thu, Jul 18 08:50 PM – 09:50 PM Newington Red U18 ONLY - Possible Nutmeg State Games Practice
Any player that was part of Central CT Youth Hockey in 2018-2019 and will NOT be playing for CCYHA in 2019-2020, you must obtain a USA Hockey release. You must follow the below link and submit a release request. Our registrar, Aaron Odell, will process these in a timely manner. Per USA Hockey rules, releases are not valid if they are sent directy to parents, they must be sent to CHC. Parents will not get a copy of the release but they can check the release status on the CHC site (www.chchockey.org), although they dont update the list very often.
The CCYHA U18 Tier 1 Midgets completed their quest for a BACK TO BACK National Championship by defeating the North Jersey Avalanche 3-2 in overtime. The CCYHA Selects started the national tournament with convincing wins over the Belle Tire 9-1 and Washington Little Caps 5-2. Game 3 brought a loss for CCYHA at the hands of the Boston Jr. Eagles by a score of 4-1. By going 2-1 in the opening round, the team earned the top seed coming out of their bracket. The opponent in the quarterinals would be #1 nationally ranked Shattuck St. Mary's. CCYHA was up to the test as they advanced to semifinals by defeating Shattuck 8-6. In-state rival Yale Jr. Bulldogs was the opponent in the semifinal round. CCYHA earned a berth in the national championship game by defeating Yale 6-2.
The final game was a matchup against #5 nationally ranked North Jersey Avalanche. After CCYHA took a 2-0 lead late in the third period, the Av's tied it up with 2 goals in a 14 second span in the final minute of play to force overtime. The game ended early in the first sudden overtime period as Killian Rowlee secured the second of the back to back National Championships for CCYHA.
Former CCYHA player, Brennan Horn, selected to USA National Camp
Congratulations to former CCYHA player, Brennan Horn, on being selected to the USA Hockey U17 National Camp. Nintey of the best players from New England recently competed at the New England Regional Camp. From there, Brennan was one of only 10 players selected to attend the USA U17 National Camp. Brennan will compete with the best players from all over the United States June 25th to July 1st in Amherst, NY as part of the National Development Program.
Brennan played at CCYHA from Learn To Play through Bantams. He then went on to play two years at Northwest Catholic High School and has recently commited to play Prep School hockey at Westminster for the upcoming school year.
With players jumping from program to program these days to play for "AAA" or "Tier 1" teams, this is a great example of how you can develop at any level.
Congratulations and Best of Luck to Brennan !!!!!!
As we are entering the spring and summer months, I wanted to share a great article about specializing in one sport:
Study Finds Just 12 Percent of NHL and NCAA Hockey Players Specialized Before Age 12
Early sport specialization does not guarantee future stardom.
If anything, it may make eventually reaching an elite level in said sport more difficult.
A new study from the Penn State College of Medicine polled 91 professional, NCAA Division I and NCA Division III hockey players about their sports history. From ScienceDaily:
"After analyzing the data, the researchers found that the mean age of beginning any sport was 4.5 years, and the mean age of specializing in ice hockey was 14.3 years. Only 12 percent of the athletes specialized in their sport before 12 years of age. Most of the athletes played two to four sports as children, with soccer and baseball being the most popular in addition to hockey. The mean age of specializing in ice hockey—around 14—was consistent across professional, NCAA Division I and NCAA Division III players."
"If you only play one sport, you (do) miss out on sports diversification, which is the idea that being a really good soccer or tennis player may help you be a really good ice hockey player," Matthew Silvis, a researcher on the study and the team physician for the Hershey Bears minor league hockey team, told ScienceDaily. "We've seen a lot of professional athletes coming out in support of this, saying that by playing a lot of sports you'll learn many skills and work different muscle groups that will help you if you specialize in one sport later on."
This was a rather small sample size, but bigger studies have found similar results. For example, a 2017 study from the Rothman Institute at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital analyzed 3,090 athletes (503 high school, 856 collegiate and 1,731 professional) and found that the average high school athlete began specializing in their sport at 12.7 years old while the average collegiate athlete specialized at 14.8 years old and the average pro athlete specialized at 14.1 years old. One of the most telling findings in the study was that only 22.3% of professional athletes said they "would want their own child to specialize to play a single sport during childhood/adolescence."
A 2017 study from the University of Wisconsin found that high school athletes with a "high specialization classification" had an 85-percent higher incidence of lower extremity injuries than high school athletes with a "low specialization classification." Essentially, athletes who specialized were found to be at a much higher risk of lower extremity injury than athletes who play and train in multiple sports.
Six-time NHL All-Star John Tavares is a great example of how multi-sport youth athletes can ultimately blossom into superior hockey players. Growing up in Ontario, Tavares traded in his skates for a pair of cleats and a lacrosse stick every summer. He only began specializing at age 16, and he believes his background in lacrosse gives him a definitive edge on the ice.
"My mom never really believed in the summer hockey, all year-round. I needed a break and I always looked forwarded to the lacrosse season. And when hockey season came around I was really looking forward to that. It was good both ways to help myself in both sports," Tavares told NHL.com in 2009. "The biggest is moving in traffic, shooting in traffic, making plays while guys are on you...When you're able to do that, you're able to draw guys toward you, make those plays in traffic, I think it creates a lot of chances offensively. Also rolling off checks -- when you roll off checks or lean into guys, use your body to create room, you do a lot more of that in lacrosse because it's such a possession game. You learn to make room for yourself, like in hockey...(It) definitely translates a lot."
USA Hockey's American Development Model, an initiative designed to help more American kids "play, love and excel in hockey", strongly encourages kids to play multiple sports during their childhood and pre-teen years. "I like the fact that kids are encouraged to play other sports. Hockey is a great sport, but playing other sports definitely helps you become a better hockey player," NHL all-star and 2014 U.S. Olympic captain Zach Parise said of the ADM.
CCYHA launches U16 & U18 Tier 2 National Bound Teams
CCYHA launches U16 & U18 Tier 2 National Bound Teams
Central CT Youth Hockey (CCYHA) will be forming split season teams at the U16 and U18 Tier 2 levels for the 2019-2020 season. Building off the success of our youth teams, we are forming these teams to fill a void in our area at the Tier 2 level. Teams will be competing in CHC Tier 2 with the winners of the CT State Tournament advancing to the USA Hockey Tier 2 National Championships. Teams will practice and play at Newington Arena and Wesleyan University.
U16 - Anthony Giusto
U18 - Bryan Healy
Wed April 17: U16 Tier 2 - 7:40PM-8:40PM
Wed April 17: U18 Tier 2 - 8:50PM-9:50PM
Thu April 18: U16 Tier 2 - 6:40PM-7:40PM
Thu April 18: U18 Tier 2 - 7:50PM-8:50PM
50.00 Tryout Fee
Please follow the link below to register for tryouts:
You could also access the tryout registration by selecting Register Online from the left hand column menu on the main page of the Central website ( www.centralcthockey.org ) then selecting CCYHA 2019-2020 TRYOUT REGISTRATION MIDGET TIER 2
Cost: 1500.00 - includes 2 practices per week, 2 games per week, Future Fitness off-ice workout once per week, 2 tournaments (including state tournament)
CCYHA SHA U18 Tier 1 Midgets win NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP
The Central CT Youth Hockey Selects Academy u18 Tier 1 team wins the NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP by defeating the Cape Cod Whalers 5-2. Congratulation to the midgets on winning a national championship for CCYHA.
Former CCYHA player, David Hallasey plays with Hartford Wolfpack
Fresh off an NCAA tournament birth with his Princeton University team, former CCYHA player David Hallasey, has signed with the AHL Hartford Wolfpack and played in his first game on April 6th. Congratulations and best of luck to David.
An App specifically designed for Hockey Parents! Rink Rater is essentially the Yelp for Hockey Rinks! With users leaving reviews on hockey-specific categories, you can tell if a Rink has Skate Sharpening (& do they know what they're doing?), a Pro Shop, Concessions, Wi-Fi, What's Nearby, and a bunch more! There is even a spot for Ref's to let each other know where their Locker Rooms are and if there are hot showers!