AP's Coaches Blog; Dog Days of August

Before I divulge into a boatload of news from the hockey universe, I would like to share my thoughts on the recent happenings in Charlottesville, VA. There is absolutely no place in any country for racial discrimination of any kind - Mr Trump, if you really want to Make America great again, the fastest way to doing that is to deactivate your Twitter account. It is time for all countries to rid themselves of alt-left and alt-right groups and to unite as one because, above all, we are all human beings regardless of skin colour, religion, or sexual orientation.

#xhockeyalums Maggie Connors scored her first international goal in Lake Placid, NY on Sunday morning! The St. Johns, NL native had umpteen glorious chances in Game 3 of the rubber match between Canada and the USA, and managed to convert on a third period PP. Connors walked up the half wall before firing a wrist shot short side on the American goaltender. In my opinion, Connors and her linemate Sarah Fillier were the two most dangerous players on the ice (for both teams) on Sunday morning. Congrats Mags; I think its safe to book your ticket to Russia!

We have completed 4 weeks of summer hockey camps, and I believe that all of them have been a smashing success. Our first-ever Goaltender-Only and Female-Only camps were our first attempt at full-day programming, and the feedback that I have received on these camps was very, very positive. With Redmond Hunt returning to the fold on a more full-time basis, I feel that our goaltending program will continue to be very strong for a long time! Great work Reddy! Our Shooter-Goalie and Development Camps went off without a hitch as well - kudos to all #xhockeyplayers and #xhockeystaff for a job well done. For photos of all camps to date, please throw a like on our Facebook page at facebook.com/xhockey or follow us on IG instagram.com/xhockey

Congratulations to Dekon Snow on his commitment to HOA Prep School for the 2017-18 season. Snow has skated with Xtreme sporadically in the past, and has been on the ice in our Bantam night skates this summer. A lot of people have asked me what I think about kids going away at 13, and here's my two cents; from a development perspective, I can see the rationale. The Hitmen AAA Bantam team is going to be near impossible to make as a 2004 this year, with Evan Martin, Will Dyke and Jack Benson fighting for 2 spots. But that being said, I think that 14 is the youngest that I would send my kid away if I had kids, and my kid would have to be very, very mature in order to do that. In no way do I disagree with the Snow's on their decision; they know their son much better than I do, or anyone passing judgement for that matter. I wish Dekon the best; he has always been a good kid to me, and he is a big kid who has great athleticism!

#xhockeyplayers Anna Barrington has made HNLs U16 team as an underager! Congrats to Anna on this achievement. While the team hasnt been announced publicly, #xhockeyplayers Mackenzie Cahill, Claudia Walsh and Abby Newhook will also sport the HNL colours this Fall. Special shout-out to Jayme Guy for receiving a first alternate designation as well.

The HNL U14 and U15 teams have been selected, and while the teams have not been posted online (to my knowledge), congrats to all #xhockeyplayers who made these teams! I am especially happy for program regulars who were not on the U14 team last year, but persevered and cracked the line-up this year (Brett Hudson, Brady Mitchelmore, Will Dyke). That being said; making these Provincial teams is fantastic, but does not define a players future career.

Our Evolve Hockey - Xtreme Hockey 2003 Chowder Cup trip to Boston at the end of July was a success! The goal of the tournament was exposure, which I believe will open some doors for #xhockeyplayers in the short and long term. Both teams finished with respectable records (Evolve 2-1-1, Xtreme 1-2-1) and players expanded their friendship networks by getting to play with players from another country. Thanks to Ben McManama, Chris Collins and Greg Collins for a great weekend, and to Providence College for allowing our kids to tour and practice at their world-class facility.

To any player who trained with me on-ice this summer and has gone away to a Major Junior, Junior A, or Prep School program - good luck! It is always fun to have the opportunity to work with kids who developed in the Xtreme Hockey program and have taken their games to higher levels.

Until Next Time,