Welcome to the home page of the East Coast Wizards. We have club teams for boys and girls in Ice Hockey, Lacrosse, and Field Hockey. Please select your sport of interest from the menu tabs at the top of the page for more details and information on the program.
Most girls playing high school hockey have to turn two pages on their calendars before their season begins.
The players in the New England Women’s Junior Hockey League, by comparison, have already been playing for a month.
“Fall is the soft spot,” said Scott Fusco, one of the team owners of the six-club league. “Good players on these teams aren’t well developed. It’s hard for them. If you’re a strong player looking to play in college, it can be tough. Some need to move on to a little more rigorous challenge to piece things together.”
The NEWJHL, open to players 19 and under, is in its first year of operation. Teams are in Bedford, Walpole, Bridgewater, Hudson, N.H., Hartford, and Bridgewater, N.J.
Fusco and his fellow owners launched the league to serve a specific market: girls in high school and postgraduates looking to play college hockey. It is the equivalent of the USHL and EJHL — a junior league that makes hockey its primary focus. Like the boys, the girls are not finding college scholarships easy to win.
“With the number of quality players there are now coming up through the girls’ ranks, it’s starting to become very similar to boys,” Fusco said. “There are more players than there are spots in college. For the top colleges, academically and athletically for the girls coming through, we think there’s definitely a need for players to have additional development opportunities to get to a more desirable spot in college.”
Each team practices at least three times a week. There are usually one or two games per week. Players are granted access to a team-provided facility for off-ice workouts. They can consult with each team’s education coordinator, who makes sure the players are compliant for NCAA entry. Players in the NEWJHL are not allowed to play for their high school teams.
The league will consider expansion, said Fusco, if the player pool becomes deeper.
“Not until all six teams are turning down good players,” Fusco said.
Join Hebron Academy on November 11th for an Admission Open House from 10 am to 12:30 pm. Learn how Hebron Academy is a life changer for boys and girls in grades 6 - 12 and postgraduate. RSVP by calling (207) 966-5225 or registering online at http://www.hebronacademy.org/admissionevents
Please join us
TUESDAY • NOVEMBER 11, 2014
10:00 am to 12:30 pm
Learn how Hebron Academy is a game changer for boys and girls in grades 6 - 12 and postgraduate.
Hebron is a community first and foremost. We honor and respect differences. We are supportive of each individual and cheer for every success: academic, athletic, and artistic. Here, pretenses are dropped and privilege is set aside. We inspire everyone to achieve beyond their own expectations. Students are elevated by the encouragement they receive for their successes, and the support that is shown for their struggles. Hebron is real—a place where students discover their voice and prepare for college.
RSVP to email@example.com or 207-966-5225
The 14-2 team had an excellent weekend at the Annual Fight Like A Girl (FLAG) tournament in Rhode Island this weekend. The tournament's goal is to raise awareness to the prevention and curing of breast cancer.
Entered into the top division, the 2s went 3-1 in the round robin games playing the Connecticut Ice Cats, the Rhode Island Sting, the Lady Flames and the New Jersey Rockets 14-1 teams. The 3 wins landed them in the championship game against the Rhode Island Sting 1 team; the one team they had narrowly lost to the first time they had played.
Determined to avenge their lone loss, the 14-2s thoroughly dominated the championship game winning 4-1. The 2s outscored their opponents 16-6 in their 5 games, earning them first place and a gold medal!
The East Coast Wizards and VentureUp are excited to announce their partnership for the 2014-2015 season. VentureUp provides strength and conditioning, skills training, nutritional training, and leadership training for hockey players.
“The online teams’ offering from VentureUp is a great teaching and development tool for the players on what it takes to reach their best and how to build key success habits, deployed in a practical system through our platform. We draw from our own experiences as former players as well as the latest findings on development to create an effective approach. It’s exciting to be a part of the Wizards’ season this year, and we have enjoyed the opportunity so far.” – Matt Lombardi (VentureUp Founder)
Both the Wizards Girls’ and Boys’ Junior Teams, along with the U14 Major 1 Girls’ team are on board with VentureUp’s services. Wizards’ owner Scott Fusco stated, “Utilizing the VentureUp platform allows us to provide additional training and education for our players in the critical areas of nutrition, leadership, and life skills to help them reach their potential as athletes.”
Freddy Meyer Named Head Coach of Wizards Boys' Junior Team
The East Coast Wizards are proud to announce the addition of Freddy Meyer as Head Coach of the East Coast Wizards Boys Junior Hockey Team.
In their inaugural season, the East Coast Wizards will be competing in the EHL. “We are very fortunate to have someone with Freddy’s experience and teaching ability joining the East Coast Wizards!” Said Bobby Jay, Wizard’s Hockey Director. “Freddy’s success as a player as well as his coaching experience in the AHL developing young players, gives our future players a great opportunity to learn what it takes to move their hockey careers forward” Jay said. Meyer, a native of Sanbornville, NH, spent the past two seasons as an Assistant Coach with the Manchester Monarchs in the AHL. In the 2013-2014 season, he helped lead the LA Kings Top Affiliate team to a first place finish, amassing a total of 49 wins.
Prior to joining the Monarchs in 2012, Meyer, a defensemen, played in 418 NHL and AHL games during a nine-year professional career from 2003-2012. In 281 NHL games with the Philadelphia Flyers, the New York Islanders, the Phoenix Coyotes and the Atlanta Thrashers, Meyer accumulated 20 goals and 53 assists, for 73 points. He also registered 23 goals and 28 assists, for 51 points in 137 career AHL games with the Philadelphia Phantoms and San Antonio Rampage. Meyer scored three goals and nine assists, for 12 points in 31 games for Modo Hockey of the Swedish Elite League during the 2011-12 season before retiring and moving on to coaching.
As a 2003 graduate of Boston University, Meyer was named to the Hockey East All-Rookie Team in 2000, was named to the NCAA East First All-American Team and to the Hockey East First All-Star Team in 2003. He signed his first professional contract as an undrafted free agent with the Flyers in 2003. In four seasons on the Terriers’ blueline, Meyer scored 17 goals and 55 assists for 72 points in 126 games while recording 288 penalty minutes.
Meyer also represented the Unites States internationally on several occasions throughout his playing career. He skated with the 1999 U.S. Men's National Under-18 Team, the 2001 U.S. National Junior Team, the 2006 U.S. Men's National Team and the 2011 U.S. Men’s Select Team.
Freddy is married to his wife Lindsey and they have two sons, Freddy (six) and Carter (five), and reside in Winchester, MA.
The East Coast Wizards are excited to announce that Hayley Moore has joined the staff as Director of Girl's/Women's Hockey.
The former Ivy League standout spent the last two seasons as an assistant coach with the Harvard women's ice hockey team. Moore was a two-year captain at Brown and a four-time All-Ivy League selection.
In two seasons with the Crimson, Moore helped the team to two Ivy League championships, two NCAA tournament appearances, and a national ranking as high as No. 2.
Prior to coming to Harvard, Moore was the head coach at St. Mark’s School in Southborough, Mass. There she guided St. Mark’s to a 12-12-1 record in 2012. Before joining St. Mark’s, Moore skated for the Boston Blades of the Canadian Women’s Hockey League for one season and served as a volunteer assistant at UMass-Boston in 2009-10, helping guide the Beacons to a 17-10 mark.
Moore, who also played a professional season in Switzerland, ranks in the top ten in career points and goals at Brown. She amassed 130 points and found the back of the net on 69 occasions, both ranking eighth in the school’s career record book. She earned All-ECAC honors and made the ECAC All-Academic team, while playing in 123 games during her four years.
After her senior season, the honors for Moore kept coming. She was selected as one of six position players in the nation to compete in the Frozen Four Skills Challenge in Denver, Colo., and also invited to train with the U.S. National Team in Lake Placid, N.Y. and Colorado Springs, Colorado.
Junior Hockey Team Owners Launch
New Girl’s League
12/07/2013, 5:00pm EST
New England Women’s Junior Hockey League will begin play this coming fall.
A group of Northeast-based junior hockey team owners/managers – Rob Barletta, Bob Crawford, Peggy Del Mauro, Bill and Joe Flanagan, Scott Fusco, Todd Stirling, and Debbie Vanderbeek – have joined forces to launch a new junior hockey league for girls, which faces off for the first time at the start of the 2014-2015 season. The 6 team league, based in New England and surrounding areas, is designed to offer increased opportunities for teenage girls to play competitive hockey with the intent of moving into the college ranks. The league will adhere to USA hockey junior rules and standards of excellence.
About the League
The NEWJHL league will develop female players via exceptional coaching, well-designed practices and competitive situations while providing opportunities for players to advance their hockey careers to the collegiate level. The NEWJHL league also will promote good sportsmanship and teamwork, and help instill responsibility in the participating players, who will be held to high standards on the ice and in the classroom. The league also will demand a high level of ethical and professional conduct by all coaches, managers and other league staff. League-wide standards of conduct will be strictly enforced.
“This league will provide the players with extensive exposure to the college hockey environment. The girls will prepare and train for the opportunity to play in front of the large audience of schools in this geographical area. It eliminates a large amount of travel that some leagues have. We as owners are committed to making this the best player development opportunity for this age group, said Flanagan.
“All of our owners, managers and coaches are committed to providing an exceptional learning experience for all players delivered in a supportive yet competitive environment,” Barletta said. “We also are dedicated to creating enhanced exposure for girl’s hockey in general, as well as economic opportunities for our member teams that will then trickle down to support our local communities.”
According to co-owner Stirling, the NEWJHL “offers players, parents, local communities and the league itself a host of benefits, including reduced expenses, minimal travel, localized control, rivalries, enhanced recruiting, and increased exposure for the sport,” he said.
Specifically, the NEWJHL league will:
Provide female, junior-level players with the opportunity to play competitive, league-based hockey in New England while supporting their academic achievement
Promote player development and provide players with exposure to college scouts through showcases and other special events
Offer expansive training opportunities and access to exceptional coaching
Provide players with opportunities to travel at no extra cost to competitions within a 200-mile radius of their home facility
Enhance players’ academic and sports-related careers
Cultivate and nurture affiliations with collegiate hockey coaches and programs to help NEWJHL players move ahead in their development
Maintain amateur status for all players within USA Hockey and all college hockey organizations
Offer numerous game-day opportunities for officials, including refs
Strongly support USA Hockey through membership stability in the geographic areas in which NEWJHL teams are based, and grow the sport in various communities via exposure to hundreds of motivated parents and players
League Management/Team Owners
The NEWJHL is managed by a group of experienced hockey professionals who each also own an individual team.
Rob Barletta owns and operates several highly successful hockey related ventures, among them the thriving RB Hockey School, the Jr. A and B-level Walpole Express teams, and the Cranston Reds, the only junior boy’s hockey team in Rhode Island. He also operates Northeast Elite Hockey, a large developmental league for both female and male players, from mites to high school. In addition, since 2006 Barletta has operated eight girls’ youth teams, including U16-U19). In addition, Barletta owns the Rodman (formerly Iorio) Arena in Walpole, Mass., a conveniently located twin-rink facility originally built as a training facility for the United States Women's Olympic Hockey team. (www.robbarletta.com)
Bob Crawford owns the Hartford Jr. Wolfpack as well as three rinks in the Greater Hartford, Conn. area. The International Skating Center of Connecticut is the home rink for this program. Crawford currently serves USA Hockey as a New England District Director (8YRS), and as the Tier 3 Jr. Caucus chair as a member of Junior Council. (www.hartfordjrwolfpack.com)
Peggy Del Mauro and Debbie Vanderbeek are the Owners and Managing Partners of the New Jersey Rockets. Under their leadership since 1999, the New Jersey Rockets Organization has grown from six Tier 1 teams to an expansive Youth and Junior hockey program which includes a developmental program, eight Tier 1 teams, nine Tier 2 teams, eight Girls teams, two Junior Teams and a Coaching Staff second to none. The program is based in Central New Jersey and the teams skate out of the prestigious Amerihealth Pavillion (practice facility for the New Jersey Devils) in Newark, NJ, Protechockey Ponds in Somerset NJ, and Bridgewater Sports Arena in Bridgewater, NJ. (www.njrockets.com)
Bill and Joe Flanagan operate an expansive youth hockey organization that includes many well-attended summer camps. Bill is the head coach, GM and owner of the successful Northern Cyclones junior boy’s hockey team (http://www.northerncyclones.com), as well as the Northern Cyclones girls’ U10 - U16 teams. In addition, the Flanagan’s own Cyclones Arena, a twin-sheet facility in Hudson, N.H. (www.northerncyclones.com/why-the-cyclones.php).
Scott Fusco is a two-time All American and Hobey Baker Award winner (Harvard University), as well as a two-time Olympian and a member of the US Hockey Hall of Fame. He has coached at all levels of boys and girls youth and high school hockey for the past 15 years. He founded the East Coast Wizards organization, which is comprised of 38 teams. The girls’ program has 20 teams ranging from 8U through 19U and is one of the most successful programs in the northeast. (www.eastcoastwizards.com)
The East Coast Wizard NEWJHL team will be coached by Paul Kennedy. Paul has been the head girl’s ice hockey coach at Cushing Academy for the past 15 years. During that time Cushing has become a perennial power in New England Prep Hockey and has sent 66 players to college hockey; 36 to Division 1 and 30 to Division 2/3. In addition, Paul has coached 6 US National Team players, 2 Olympians, and 1 Patty Kazmier Award Winner. Fifteen former Cushing players went on to captain their college teams. Prior to coaching at Cushing, Paul was the head coach at Milton Academy.
Coach Kennedy also works extensively with USA Hockey. He is currently the Power Skating coach for the Women’s National Team, and he serves as an instructor at the National Development Camps, and as an evaluator and scout for the National Team program.
Todd Stirling is head coach and GM of the Boston Junior Bandits, based at the twin-sheet Bridgewater Ice Arena in Bridgewater, Mass. His scouting experience includes stints for the New York Islanders (NHL), Cooney Management Company (NHL Player Agency), Omaha Lancers (USHL), and Waterloo Blackhawks (USHL). Todd oversees 25 plus Bandits youth teams, girls teams ranging from U10 through U19, and manages 3 junior teams. (www.bostonbandits.com).
The NEWJHL will host league wide tryouts in April at The Edge Sports Center in Bedford, MA. Tryouts will be held Saturday, April 12th, 2014 at 4:30pm and 6:10pm as well as Sunday, April 13th, 2014 at 12:00pm and 1:30pm.
For more information about the league and tryout registration, visit www.newjhl.com or contact
Wizard Boys Charter Member of Elite 9 Hockey League
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: JANUARY 22, 2014
The Elite 9 Hockey League has been formed for next season to establish the most competitive league in New England.
The Wizard Boys are one of 6 charter members in the new Elite 9 Hockey League. Please see the press release below announcing this exciting new venture!
E9 Elite 9 Hockey League
The Elite 9 Hockey League will feature the top 9 Tier I Elite teams in New England. The
E9 will feature 6 charter members – Seacoast Spartans, New Hampshire Avalanche, East Coast Wizards, Boston Advantage, Boston JrRangers and Valley Jr Warriors – plus the 3 top teams at each age level from the Boston Hockey League (BHL).
Affiliate members will participate in the Boston Hockey League and will compete in the BHL’s September Parity Play-In Tournament to determine which 3 teams from the BHL at each age level will be placed into the Elite 9.
An automatic bid into the Elite 9 for the 2014-15 season will be awarded to any team that wins the 2013-14 NEHL American Conference Regular Season Title. The BHL will be split into 2 Tiers – American and National Conferences – in order to offer the highest degree of parity for all teams and programs in the league. Conference seeding for the 2014-15 BHL Season will also be based upon the BHL September Parity Play-In Tournament results.
Women and men used to gaze up at the stars, awed at the sight and size of the universe, much like Detroit Red Wings fitness trainers used to be in awe at the sight and size of Brett Hull's butt during his final Motor City days.
My understanding of the sky's map is limited to the Big Dipper (good nickname for Buffalo's Tyler Myers, by the way) and the constellation Orion. Orion is located on the celestial equator and can been seen across the world, much like Pat Quinn's head. Its name, Orion, refers to a hunter in Greek mythology. Since my late teenage years, whether I am in Mingo Junction, Ohio, or Vancouver, British Columbia, I always look up and locate Orion. It's my satellite to home and youth.
I first became aware of Orion from the now bankrupt movie production company Orion Pictures Corporation, which made movies from 1978-1998. I remember the company's animated intro prior to the start of a movie: stars from the constellation would twirl into the letter "O" before the entire word "Orion" was spelled out.
It seemed as if 46 percent of movies produced in the late '70s and early '80s, my HBO sweet spot years, were produced by Orion. I am sure this number is probably much lower. "Back to School," "10," "Hoosiers," "Platoon," "No Way Out" and others all began with the animated Orion logo. I would like to publicly thank the now defunct movie company and HBO for my astronomy acumen and the indelible image of Bo Derek jogging on the beach with wet, braided hair. ("Before the Internet, there was HBO." Now there is a slogan to believe in.)
Today, kids, teenagers, adults and Sean Avery don't so much stare up to the trees, clouds, airplanes, stars and 6-foot-9 NHL linesman Mike Cvik as much as they used to; now, most stare down at their cell phones and personal digital assistants (Jim Balsillie's PDA BlackBerry, yo). As a result of all this "looking down," we miss so much up in the heavens. We even look down at these things during dinner, hockey games and Heisman Trophy presentations. People even look down at their PDAs while they drive. Who needs a moon roof on a clear summer night when I can play Tetris on I-95 while I soar through the E-ZPASS lane?
This is my gigantic preamble to why you should one day sign up your young son or daughter to play youth hockey at a local rink near you. If nothing else, it gets them away from electronics and teaches them a small slice of humanity that they can take forward through life, a life with more heart and less battery power. The rink's cold robs electronics of their battery power and signal reception, anyway.
So, if you are a first-time hockey parent, or dream of one day spending more than $10,000 and sacrificing weekends for a decade of glamorous youth or "minor" hockey, here are 13 important things you need to know about the youth hockey universe -- and hockey in general -- to help speed up the assimilation process in joining the "Congregation of Independent Insane in the Membrane Hockey Community Union" or COIIITMHCU. If you move those letters around you eventually get Chicoutimi. A miracle from the star-filled heavens above. (I'm sure my fellow COIIITMHCU members will offer even more, and we can post next week.)
1. Under no circumstances will hockey practice ever be cancelled. Ever. Even on days when school is cancelled, practice is still on. A game may be cancelled due to inclement weather because of travel concerns for the visiting team, but it would have to rain razor blades and bocce balls to cancel hockey practice at your local rink. It's good karma to respect the game.
2. Hockey is an emotional game and your child has the attention span of a chipmunk on NyQuil. The hockey coach will yell a bit during practice; he might even yell at your precious little Sparky. As long as there is teaching involved and not humiliation, it will be good for your child to be taught the right way, with emphasis.
3. Hockey is a very, very, very, very difficult game to play. You are probably terrible at it. It takes high skill and lots of courage, so lay off your kid. Don't berate them. Be patient and encourage them to play. Some kids need more time to learn how to ride the bike, but, in the end, everyone rides a bike about the same way.
Your kids are probably anywhere from age 4-8 when they first take up hockey. They will not get a call from Boston University coach Jack Parker or receive Christmas cards from the Colorado Avalanche's director of scouting. Don't berate them. Demand punctuality and unselfishness for practice and games. That's it. Passion is in someone, or it isn't. One can't implant passion in their child. My primary motive in letting my kids play hockey is exercise, physical fitness and the development of lower-body and core strength that will one day land them on a VH1 reality show that will pay off their student loans or my second mortgage.
4. Actually, I do demand two things from my 10-year-old Squirt, Jackson. Prior to every practice or game, as he turns down AC/DC's "Big Jack," gets out of the car and makes his way to the trunk to haul his hockey bag inside a cold, Connecticut rink, I say, "Jack, be the hardest, most creative and grittiest worker ... and be the one having the most fun." That might be four things, but you know what I mean.
5. Your kids should be dressing themselves and tying their own skates by their second year of Squirt. Jack is 67 pounds with 0 percent body fat and arms of linguini, and he can put on, take off and tie his own skates. If he can, anyone can. I don't go in the locker room anymore. Thank goodness; it stinks in there.
6. Do not fret over penalties not called during games and don't waste long-term heart power screaming at the referees. My observational research reveals the power-play percentage for every Mite hockey game ever played is .0000089 percent; for Squirts, .071 percent. I prefer referees to call zero penalties.
7. Yell like crazy during the game. Say whatever you want. Scream every kind of inane instruction you want to your kids. They can't hear you. In the car ride home, ask them if they had fun and gently promote creativity and competiveness, but only after you take them to Denny's for a Junior Grand Slam breakfast or 7-Eleven for a Slurpee. Having a warm breakfast after an early morning weekend game will become one of your most syrupy sweet memories.
8. Whenever possible, trade in your kids' ice skates and buy used skates, especially during those growing years and even if you can afford to buy new skates every six months. Your kids don't need $180 skates and a $100 stick no matter what your tax bracket is. They will not make them better players.
9. Missing practice (like we stated above) or games is akin to an Irish Catholic missing Mass in 1942. We take attendance at hockey games very seriously. Last week, the Islanders' Brendan Witt was hit by an SUV in Philadelphia. Witt got up off the pavement and walked to Starbucks for a coffee, and then later played against the Flyers that night. Let me repeat that: BRENDAN WITT WAS HIT BY AN SUV ... AND PLAYED THAT NIGHT! Re-read that sentence 56 times a night to your child when they have a case of the sniffles and want to stay home to watch an "iCarly" marathon. By, the way Philadelphia police cited Witt for two minutes in jail for obstruction. Witt will appeal.
10. Teach your kids not to celebrate too much after a goal if your team is winning or losing by a lot. And by all means, tell them celebrate with the team. After they score, tell them not to skate away from their teammates like soccer players. Find the person who passed you the puck and tell him or her, "Great pass." We have immediate group hugs in hockey following a short, instinctive reaction from the goal scorer. I am proud of my boy for a lot of things, but I am most proud at how excited he gets when a teammate scores a goal. He is Alex Ovechkin in this regard.
11. There is no such thing as running up the score in hockey. This is understood at every level. It's very difficult to score goals and unexplainably exhilarating when one does. Now, if we get to 14-1, we may want to take our foot off the gas a tad.
12. Unless their femur is broken in 16 places, Mites or Squirts should not lie on the ice after a fall on the ice or against the boards. Attempt to get up as quickly as one can and slowly skate to the bench.
13. Do not offer cash for goals. This has no upside. Passion and love and drive cannot be taught or bought. I do believe a certain measure of toughness and grit can be slowly encouraged and eventually taught. Encourage your kid to block shots and to battle hard in the corners. It will serve them well in life.
Enjoy the rink. Keep it fun, keep it in perspective and enjoy the madness. In this digital world of electronics, you may find hockey to be the most human endeavor you partake in. Cell phones run on batteries. Hockey players run on blood. Blood is warmer. Welcome.