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Westwood Youth Hockey 2016-2017 Teams and League Placements

Westwood Youth Hockey (WYH) will support Boys Travel teams for Squirts through Midgets, Girls Travel from U10 to U19, two Middle School teams, an ADM program, an intramural House League program, and a Learn To Skate program.

The target roster size for Travel teams is 13-15 skaters plus 1 or 2 goalies, but they may be smaller or larger depending on age group, talent level. If there are too many players at a particular level for a certain number of teams, a team may be added. All Pee Wee and Bantam aged players will be placed on a travel team, at the appropriate talent level. Squirt and Mite aged players (U10 and younger) not placed on a travel team will be assumed to be enrolled in the ADM program. If the player would prefer not to be placed within ADM, then they may receive a refund of the initial deposit.

Player placement is based on a Player Evaluation (performed by their current coaches) and an on-ice evaluation which may or may not be necessary for a particular player. Player Evaluations are completed during Registration time, and the on-ice evaluations are held in early March. The dates and times of the on-ice evaluations will be published on the WYH website. Teams are posted shortly after the tryout period.

It is the goal of the WYH organization that every travel team average three to four events per week, which typically includes 1 game, 1 or 2 team practices, and one or more on-ice Skills/Power Skating sessions.

Boys Travel Teams

Bantam, PeeWee and Squirt teams will play a full-season schedule that starts in early September and ends in March. The final number of teams at any one division will be determined by the number of players who register and by ability. There will be an on ice evaluation in early March. Teams will be formed based on the evaluations of current coaches in conjunction with the on-ice evaluations. It is imperative that if you intend to play in the upcoming season, you must register by the close of registration.

Age eligibility for each level is as shown.

Level Birth Year
Midget 1999 through 2001
Bantam 2002 and 2003
PeeWee 2004 and 2005
Squirt 2006 and 2007

If the tryouts produce enough capable players to warrant rostering an additional team, provided such squad would be competitive so as to promote and foster a constructive and positive environment for the players, families and coaches, it will be considered by the WYH Board of Directors.

Players at the Squirt level who are not placed on a Travel team are encouraged and assumed to play in WYH's developmental program, the ADM program. Registration deposit for a Travel team can be applied to the ADM program, or can be refunded upon request.

Girls Travel teams

WYH intends to roster teams in the U10, U12, U14 and U19 Divisions as well as a Girls Middle School team. The number of teams at any one division will be determined by the number and ability of players who register. There will be an on ice evaluation in early March. Teams will be formed based on the evaluations of current coaches in conjunction with the on-ice evaluations. Players who do not register before the teams are formed are not guaranteed a spot on a team.

The teams at the U10, U12, and U14 division will begin in early September. They will play approximately 25 games in the Middlesex Girls Hockey League which will conclude in March. The typical week will consist of a practice, one or two power skating/skills sessions, and a game. The game schedule is produced by the league monthly and is typically posted a month in advance.

The U19 team will be open to girls ages 14-19. It is intended as a preparatory program for high school hockey. The team will play a 10 game schedule beginning in early September and concluding the weekend prior to Thanksgiving. They may also play in a tournament Thanksgiving weekend. The goal of this program is to have the girls improve both individually and as a team as they head into the high school hockey season. The team may have several team practices early in the season. Access to Power Skating is available to all U19 players. Players are expected to attend all practices and power skating sessions. The games will likely NOT be held on Sunday nights due to a variety of conflicts for players in that age group.

Girls who play on the U14 team and are high school students are also eligible to play on the U19 team.

Westwood Youth Hockey ADM Teams

WYH will provide several ADM teams which draw upon elements of the USA Hockey American Development Model (ADM). The ADM emphasizes age-appropriate skill development and fun over a focus on games (and an overemphasis on winning games). It encourages kids to play other sports so that they become better overall athletes and so they don't become burned out by playing too much hockey (with some kids playing 10-12 months a year right now). It encourages many touches of the puck to increase fun and development for each player through the use of small ice drills/games in practice and small ice games. Playing only full-ice games at this age/level, with 10 players chasing one puck around a full sheet, doesn't result in frequent puck touches and play-making chances for individual players, thus limiting fun and development.

The goal of the ADM program is to have the kids play, love and excel (develop) at the great game of hockey, a sport that instills great values of teamwork and hard work, but is also exciting and fun to play for mites all the way up to adults.

What will this specifically mean for the WYH ADM Teams?

  • a team of 9-13 players
  • 1-2 practices a week as a team
  • 1 skills/skating development session per week, plus access to any other age-appropriate skills session offered by WYH.
  • 20-25 games (a mix of full-ice and cross-ice as discussed above, including goalies)

The ADM teams will once again participate in the Town-Line league, a 3-on-3 league against other towns on Sunday mornings.  This league will be tiered for both talent and age, such that similarly skilled players will be playing against one another, in order to maximize development.

The emphasis for the WYH ADM teams will be on fun and development which is appropriate for this age rather than worrying about trying to win league games. Please note that the amount of ice time will be similar to the other WYH travel teams. The ADM teams will play 20-25 games with other local organizations that support similar programs/philosophies. However, the focus of this team will be having fun, creating a passion and love of the game and developing their playing skills.

You can find more information about the ADM through the USA Hockey website.

Boys and Girls House League program

WYH will continue its expanded House League program. This is a developmental program for players aged 10 and under. The House League is intended to provide a fun and competitive hockey development program and is a precursor to the ADM and Travel team programs.

WYH believes that by providing a strong environment of development through more hands-on coaching, structured practices and games that give young and new players the equal opportunity to work on their skating, shooting and passing skills and learn the game of hockey, they will develop better than touching a puck for only a few seconds in a full sheet game at this level.

In the House League, the players will be on the ice as much as possible. House League will have weekly practices on Saturday at Babson on full ice at various development stations, along with cross-ice games on Sundays. Some House League players may also be invited to play with an age-appropriate ADM team if skills warrant the move.

Learn to Skate/Learn to Play Hockey

WYH will again offer its two (2) ten-week Saturday morning Learn to Skate/Learn to Play Hockey programs. The first session will run from early November until early January.The second session will run from early January to March.

The WYH Learn to Skate/Learn to Play Hockey Program is designed for children with little or no skating or hockey experience. On the ice, skaters will be placed into groups based on skating ability. The goal of the program is to have children gain confidence on the ice while developing their skating abilities in a relaxed and fun atmosphere.

Each session will include three phases. The first phase of each session will focus on balance, starting, the proper skating stride and how to stop. The second phase of each session will focus on turning, pivoting and skating backwards. The last phase of each session will introduce basic ice hockey drills including stick handling, passing to a stationary and moving target, shooting and eventually cross-ice games.

Boys Middle School team

WYH will roster one Middle School team to play in the Junior High School League of the Neponset Valley League ("NVL"). This team will play approximately twenty-eight (28) games, typically on Friday or Sunday nights. There are no team practices, but players are able to attend Sunday Power Skating sessions. This team is open to players who play on other WYH teams, and to players who play outside of the WYH program.

In order to field a competitive team with the appropriate quantity of players each week, a minimum of 18 players is required. If registration falls short, we will refund or apply your payment to a boys travel program.

Girls Middle School team

The Girls Middle School team will play from early November to early March. There are no practices. This team is open to middle school girls who regularly play both within and outside of Westwood Youth Hockey. They will play games as we are able to schedule with other towns, preferably on weeknights, but occasionally on weekends. Games will not conflict with the WYH girls schedules, but may conflict with others. The Girls program director reserves the right to impose restrictions on the grade levels of the players depending on the number of girls who register for the program. Registration for this program is open now and will extend into September. Tuition will be set once the schedule is determined. The initial deposit will be $250, which cannot be refunded.