Members of the 2014 U.S. Olympic Women's Ice Hockey Team recently made a significant contribution to selected youth hockey associations across the country, sending 300 total sets of OneGoal starter equipment to the programs that helped shape and inspire their own hockey dreams.
Each player on the American roster was provided with 12 sets of equipment to donate to the youth hockey association of their choice. Each equipment set includes shin pads, shoulder pads, elbow pads, pants, gloves, a helmet with a cage, and a bag.
Today, more than 40,000 OneGoal starter equipment sets are in arenas and youth hockey associations nationwide to help families get started in hockey without the initial barrier of purchasing equipment. Total Hockey is a key partner with USA Hockey in the OneGoal equipment initiative.
"The Olympic dream began in many of these local hockey associations for our athletes and they never forget it," said Dave Ogrean, executive director of USA Hockey. "With the OneGoal program, they have an opportunity to help inspire a new generation of kids, while also saluting the people who helped them chase their Olympic dream."
Three-time U.S. Olympian Julie Chu donated to her childhood rink in Connecticut and remembered fondly the role it played in her development.
"It's truly my home rink, where I grew up and developed a love for the game," she said. "I'm so grateful for the time I spent playing there, and I love that I can give back to a place that has meant so much to me."
Minnesotan Anne Schleper, who will be playing in her first Olympic Winter Games, donated to a Minneapolis urban youth hockey association for which she served as a volunteer.
"Every time I had the opportunity to volunteer there, I was immediately filled with laughter and joy," she said. "I hope my donation becomes a great blessing to them and can help contribute to the wonderful standards they encourage every single day in their kids.
"Hockey gave me a way and a voice; all these kids need is an opportunity for the same."
|Kacey Bellamy||New England Junior Falcons Girls||Enfield, Conn.|
|Megan Bozek||Chicago Blackhawks Youth Hockey||Chicago, Ill.|
|Kate Buesser||Back Bay Indians||Wolfeboro, N.H.|
|Alex Carpenter||New Jersey Colonials||Morristown, N.J.|
|Lisa Chesson||Tomahawks Special Hockey||Chicago, Ill.|
|Julie Chu||Wonderland Wizards||Bridgeport, Conn.|
|Kendall Coyne||Chicago Blackhawks Youth Hockey||Chicago, Ill.|
|Brianna Decker||Wisconsin Amateur Hockey Association||Manitowoc, Wis.|
|Meghan Duggan||Danvers Youth Hockey||Danvers, Mass.|
|Jincy Dunne||St. Louis Cyclones / STL Lady Blues||St. Louis, Mo.|
|Lyndsey Fry||Coyotes Amateur Hockey Association / She Wolves||Scottsdale, Ariz.|
|Amanda Kessel||North Metro Youth Hockey Association||Minneapolis, Minn.|
|Hilary Knight||Sun Valley Youth Hockey||Sun Valley, Idaho|
|Jocelyne Lamoureux||Grand Forks Parks District Angels||Grand Forks, N.D.|
|Monique Lamoureux||Grand Forks Parks District Angels||Grand Forks, N.D.|
|Gigi Marvin||Warroad Youth Hockey||Warroad, Minn.|
|Brianne McLaughlin||Elyria Ice Hockey||Elyria, Ohio|
|Annie Pankowski||Anaheim Lady Ducks||Anaheim, Calif.|
|Michelle Picard||Taunton Brewins||Taunton, Mass.|
|Josephine Pucci||Ramapo Saints Youth Hockey||Monsey, N.Y.|
|Molly Schaus||East Coast Jumbos||Boston, Mass.|
|Anne Schleper||DinoMights||Minneapolis, Minn.|
|Kelli Stack||Parma Flyers Hockey Association||Parma, Ohio|
|Lee Stecklein||Roseville Area Youth Hockey Association||Roseville, Minn.|
|Jessie Vetter||Madison Patriots||Madison, Wis.|
Aug. 25, 2016 | Body-checking is a skill, not unlike skating, shooting and stickhandling, and it’s a critical skill to teach. Rhode Island Hockey recently gave it special emphasis with a free on-ice checking clinic open to all players in the 12U, 14U and 16U age classifications. Hosted at Schneider Arena with help from Providence College men’s hockey head coach Nate Leaman and Roger Grillo from USA Hockey, the two-hour clinic welcomed more than 100 players for station-based instruction in the fine art of giving and receiving a body check properly.
“Body contact is sometimes an under-taught skill, but there’s so much value in teaching it, both in terms of helping young players become more successful and also in terms of injury prevention,” said Grillo. “It was great to team up with the Rhode Island coaches and offer a learning opportunity that’ll pay dividends for these kids throughout their hockey careers.”
The event was so successful that Rhode Island Hockey will host a second session Sept. 8 at Boss Ice Arena on the University of Rhode Island campus in Kingston. Led by Kevin Sullivan, Rhode Island Hockey’s American Development Model director, the clinic will likely become an annual offering to enhance players’ skill and contact confidence, especially for 13-year-olds progressing into their first season of 14U hockey.
“The initial idea came from a parent asking if we offer any checking-specific training for players transitioning from 12U to 14U,” said Bob Larence, president of Rhode Island Hockey.
There’s a component of body-contact training that happens at every level, from cross-ice 8U to small-area battle drills for older players, but the idea of a body checking-specific teaching event for tweens and teens seemed a beneficial complement to that team-level training, so Rhody ran with it.
“We all thought it was a great idea, and ultimately, it became a great collaboration with Rhode Island Hockey, USA Hockey and the local colleges – Providence, URI and Brown,” said Larence.