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President's Corner

U10 Black hockey team smiling from the bench at a tournament

2019 - 2020 President's Letter

Dear Parents and Players:

The 2019 – 2020 season marks the 20th since the inception of the Shoreline Sharks in 2000. It’s hard to believe that in the past five years we’ve grown from 56 players and 12 coaches to 270 players and over 40 coaches. We are the largest all-girls program in Southern Connecticut with 11 travel teams, three hockey development clinics, and a newly formed house league!

This growth is grounded by our passion and purpose: to provide girls of all ages and hockey abilities opportunities to learn, play, and love the sport. We are proud to deliver a high quality hockey experience through our expansive program that includes teams at all age ranges (U8 – 19), a mix of competitive levels through our participation in multiple leagues (NEGHL, CHC, and CGHL), partnerships with Pro Crease Goaltending and IPH Hockey to provide formalized, best-in-class skill development, our continued commitment to growing the game with our learn hockey initiatives, and a focus on adding female role models through our coaching selection.

2018-2019 ACHIEVEMENTS
Our measure of success is always development and a commitment to providing opportunities for our players to continually advance to their next level, as hockey players and people.  Before we look forward, let’s celebrate and acknowledge our notable accomplishments from last season:

Competitive Success

  • 2 teams qualifying for New England Tier II Regionals (U14 Black and U19 Black)
  • 1st place in Tier II league play (U16 Black/CHC)
  • 1st place (U10 Black/CGHL) and finalist (U16-19 Green/ Fall CGHL) in state tournament play

Exposure & Opportunity

  • 10 players invited to New England District Select Weekend
  • 5 players participated in the CGHL Biscuit in the Basket Showcase
  • 8 players selected for all-state high school teams (SCC/FCIAC)
  • 9 players committed to top boarding schools to play hockey, totaling 21 in two seasons
  • 18 Learn to Play Clinic players graduated travel teams 

Programming

  • 20 players registered for our first annual Try Goalie for a Day event
  • Expanded skill sessions to include IPH Hockey training
  • Expanded goalie training to include mini goalie camps
  • Alliance formed with the Mid Fairfield Stars to allow Sharks players a path to Tier I

WHAT'S NEW
Season to season, we work hard to make improvements that strengthen our organization and our ability to serve our members. We’re excited about the enhancements for the 2019-2020 season:

  • New Coaching Director:  Michael Barrett joins the team, bringing tremendous experience from his time as the head coach of the Quinnipiac Unversity Women’s team, an instructor at USA Hockey development camps and a coach of various youth hockey teams including our U19 Black Regional Finalists in the 2017-2018 season. Learn more about Michael’s background.
  • Additional Female Coaches: We have increased the number of female coaches to 9 from 6 last season and none five years ago. It’s a win-win as our players gain role models and our new coaches have the chance to give back to the next generation of hockey players.  
  • House League:  Weekly cross-ice scrimmages complement our Learn to Play programs, giving players new to hockey the chance to improve skill and transition to gameplay in a fun, fast, high-touch format. The league starts in November, click here for more information.
  • Expanded U16-U19 Offering:  Options for girls ages 16 – 19 become limited as they get older. We will have four U16/19 teams this year including a Winter team that allows players an opportunity to skate for the full season. Over 60 players in this age bracket enrolled for our White, Green and Black split teams. 
  • Winter Whiteout Tournament:  We will host our first annual regional tournament on December 27 -  29 at the Northford Ice Pavilion for U8-U14. Learn more about our winter tournament.
  • Website: Our new website launched recently.  It delivers more content, better functionality, and improved mobile responsiveness. The transition should be seamless, and the URL remains the same: shorelinesharkshockey.com.
  • Values: Members tell us our organization is different. We’ve spent time defining our values with the intent that they guide decisions and reinforce our uniquely Sharks’ culture. Look for our rollout as the season starts.  

PLAYER SAFETY
USA Hockey and the Shoreline Sharks take player safety very seriously and have a zero-tolerance policy for abuse and misconduct. USA Hockey’s SafeSport program focused on preventing any abuse, bullying, threatening, or hazing. All of our coaches and board members and as of this season, players 18 and older, must become SafeSport certified to participate in any official Sharks activity. 

SafeSport policies address areas were misconduct can occur, including the locker room, electronic communication, and travel. In support of these policies, we require each team to designate a SafeSport-certified locker monitor for every practice and game. Part of the protocol is that CELL PHONE USAGE IS NOT ALLOWED in the locker room, a policy our coaches, team managers, and locker room monitors will enforce. If a player needs or wants to use their phone, they need to step outside the locker room. We ask for your support in reinforcing our policies and keeping our players safe. Click here to review our locker room policy.  

THANK YOU
We want to acknowledge our coaches, volunteers, and board members for the time and energy they devote to the Shoreline Sharks. Their efforts, along with the support and trust we receive from our families, reinforce the positive, development-minded culture that makes us special.

We are proud of our ability to inspire and empower girls through the sport of hockey and look forward to another season filled with growth, friendships, and fun.  

Please don’t hesitate to contact me with any thoughts, questions, or ideas.  

 

Ed Rodham
President

Program Highlights

At the base level, all youth hockey clubs have the same purpose: to provide programming that enables kids to play hockey.  However, the execution is the differentiator.

Here are our core priorities:   

  • Strong, positive organizational culture grounded in principle and shared values
  • Player development centric organization focused on helping each player reach their potential and next level of play
  • Absolute focus to growing the game through our Learn to Play Clinics, reaching girls of all ages (3 – 19)
  • Membership in multiple leagues (CGHL, CHC, and NEGHL) to achieve the ideal competitive balance for each team
  • Tiered travel team structure (White, Green, and Black) allows us to offer multiple teams (11 in total) at all age brackets (U08 - U19), optimizing growth and development at all level of play
  • Extensive development opportunities outside of team practice, including best-in-class goalie training program, in-season skill sessions, tournament opportunities, and pre-season camps
  • Top-tier coaching team using a consistent methodology that aligns with the USA Hockey American Development Model to optimize development
  • Champions of the girls’ hockey experience, giving access to female role-models through our expanding number of female Sharks coaches or our partnerships with like-minded organizations like Pro Crease Goaltending or the QU Women’s Hockey Team.

We are focused on delivering an exceptional hockey experience for girls of all ages and hockey ability.  We hope to see you on the ice!

Shoreline Sharks President Ed Rodham Coaching a Game

Ed Rodham President

Importance of Long-Term Athlete Development

USA Hockey has a great overview as to why practice is critical in a development- focused model.

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