SIMSBURY YOUTH HOCKEY TRYOUT PROCEDURES
(Including Roles/Responsibilities, Evaluation Criteria)
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Each year in the early Fall, the Simsbury Youth Hockey Association (SYHA) conducts a tryout process for those skaters wishing to participate on a Travel team. The goal of the process is to fairly evaluate the skills and abilities of each player and, in so doing, ensure that each player is selected for the appropriate level team.
SYHA will select teams for each of the boys and girls divisions after a weeklong evaluation process during which each player will be evaluated at least twice and in the vast majority of cases three times. Dates and times for the tryouts are posted on the SYHA website (http://www.simsburyhockey.com) and typically announced via email to the parents/guardians of all registered players. What follows is a description of the process, along with the roles of those people responsible for conducting the evaluation and selection process.
Typically, SYHA fields two or three travel teams in each division (Mite, Squirt, PeeWee, Bantam, Midget). Those teams are registered with the CT Hockey Conference and are typically designated as A, B or C or, in some years, A, A1 and B. For the purposes of this document, A, A1, and B are used.
Tryout Process Personnel, Roles & Responsibilities
The following information summarizes the roles & responsibilities for the key people involved in the tryout process including the President, Division Director, Director of Coaching, the A team Coach and Evaluators.
- Sends an email to entire community at the start of tryouts to let people know where they can find appropriate information on the website regarding tryouts.
- Conducts a meeting with Director of Coaching, each Division Director and the A team Coach to make sure they are all in agreement as to the process. (can be one group meeting)
- Fields calls as required after tryouts
- Makes sure SYHA policies and procedures are followed
- Educates parents about who the evaluators are at the parents meeting
- Emails parents of all players in their division prior to tryouts to inform them of the tryout dates and of the meeting held during the first night to go over process and answer any questions
- Holds a meeting the first night of tryouts to explain the process and answer any questions for any interested parents.
- Assists the A team Coach with lining up evaluators as necessary, making sure there are a minimum of three at each session
- Provides evaluation sheets on clipboards w/ pens to all evaluators & the A team Coach
- Obtains pinnies from equipment manager, Assigns pinnies to players, Records pinney numbers
- Collects and records evaluation results from evaluators.
- Answers any questions that may arise during the process
- Makes sure the A team Coach has appropriate on-ice help during tryouts
- Acts as a liaison between the A team Coach and evaluators if the evaluators are requesting certain drills during a session
- Emails postings of player assignments (which session to attend) after each day of tryouts to web coordinator
- Emails final team postings to web coordinator
Director of Coaching:
- Meets with the Division Directors, President, the A team Coach and Evaluators to make sure everyone is on the same page regarding expectations and responsibilities during tryout process
- Attends as many tryout sessions as possible in his/her capacity of assisting coaches and Evaluators, but is not watching sessions as an Evaluator.
- Assist the A team Coach with lining up evaluators as necessary, make sure there are 2 to 4 at each session
- Answers any questions that may arise during the process
- Makes sure the A team Coach has appropriate on ice help during tryouts
- Makes sure our policies and procedures with regard to team selection and player ratings are being followed
A Team Coach:
- Attends meeting with the above prior to tryouts to make sure he/she is fully aware of responsibilities during tryouts,
- Picks qualified evaluators who can be there all 3 nights,
- Researches players by obtaining feedback from prior year’s coaches,
- Makes sure he/she is prepared with an on-ice plan for tryouts,
- Makes sure he/she has adequate on-ice help so he/she can spend maximum time watching players instead of only running drills,
- May add observations to assist in the final roster selections,
- Contact team members via phone to congratulate them and welcome to the team after the team is posted on the website
The evaluations and team assignments for each division will be the responsibility of an Evaluation Team made up of the A team Coach and 2-4 evaluators. Evaluators will be chosen from within and outside SYHA by the Division Director and the A team Coach and approved by the Director of Coaching. Outside evaluators will be used to the extent possible. Inside evaluators will not have any children in the division being evaluated. The Division Director will organize the off-ice components of the tryout, provide additional information requested by the Evaluation Team and make sure that all SYHA tryout policies and procedures are followed. Evaluators will attend all division sessions to the extent possible. The A Team Coach will run the on-ice sessions and can enlist whatever on-ice assistance the coach desires. If coaches for the A1 and/or B team are named during the tryout process, those coaches will join the Evaluation Team and may participate in subsequent on-ice sessions. The Evaluation Team may also add an additional evaluator(s) to the Evaluation Team at any point in the process to focus on goalies.
Squirts, Pee Wees and Bantams - Those wishing to tryout for a travel team will skate from the beginning of the process. Those not wanting to play travel will be assigned to a house team. A post-tryout evaluation session for those players may be scheduled by the Division Director.
*Session 1 and 2 – Players will skate by birth year as listed on the Tryout Schedule.
*After Sessions 1 and 2, the Evaluation Team will determine the groups for Sessions 3 and 4. Those assignments will be posted on the SYHA website.
*After reviewing the performance of all the players at the first four sessions and additional information deemed relevant by the Evaluation Team, the Evaluation Team will determine the groups for Sessions 5, 6, and 7. Those assignments will be posted on the SYHA website. Those players assigned to Session 5 will make up the A team and a portion of the A1 team. Those players assigned to Session 6 will make up the remainder of the A1 team and a portion of the B team. Those players assigned to Session 7 will make up the remainder of the B team or will participate in the house program.
*After the conclusion of Session 7, the Evaluation Team will review the performances at all seven sessions and additional information deemed relevant by the Evaluation Team and assign players to the appropriate level within the division. Each player will receive a phone call from the coach of the team to which they have been assigned as soon as practical after assignments are complete.
The exact number, order and nature of the sessions after Session 3 and 4 may be subject to minor revisions if a Division Director determines, pursuant to SYHA policy, to use a format other than A, A1, B and house format.
Goalies may be asked to attend sessions in a different pattern than that outlined above for players at the discretion of the Evaluation Team.
Mites - Session 1 - All players eligible for and desiring to play on a travel team will skate and will be evaluated by the Evaluation Team. The Evaluation will then determine the groups for Sessions 2 and 3.
Those players determined to have the highest potential to play Mite A hockey will be assigned to Session 2. Those skaters not included in that group will be assigned to Session 3.
After reviewing the performance of all the players at the first three sessions and additional information deemed relevant by the Evaluation Team, the Evaluation Team may assign players who have demonstrated the highest qualifications to play A level hockey to the A team. Those players may be excused from Session 4 at the discretion of the A Coach. In addition, the Evaluation Team may assign players who are deemed not ready for travel hockey to the house program after Sessions 2 and 3. All players not excused or assigned to the house program will skate in Session 4.
After the conclusion of Session 4, the Evaluation team will review the performances at all four sessions and additional information deemed relevant by the Evaluation Team and assign players to the appropriate level within the division. Each player will receive a phone call from the coach of the team to which they have been assigned as soon as practical after assignments are complete.
Important Note: A player’s status on past year’s teams in no way guarantees placement on that team for the current season. Example: A player assigned to the A team in 2014 is not automatically assigned to the A team for the 2015 season. However, a player not selected by the evaluation team for at least the same team as the prior year will be discussed and final decision on the roster placement will be finalized by a committee that includes President, VP of Hockey Ops, Director of Coaching and the Division Director.
General Evaluation Criteria
Evaluators will be given specific instructions for conducting their evaluations and what they are looking for with each player. Evaluators will be instructed to:
- Review, in advance, all of the drills and skills to be observed so that they are clear on the on-ice process
- Review the evaluation criteria prior to the process to ensure that all evaluators are evaluating the same skill with the same intent
- Stay separate from the other evaluators and the spectators during the entire on-ice process
- Make sure that all evaluators have the same evaluation page with the same pinney numbers and colors
- Review their evaluations at the end of the session to ensure they have not made any entry errors
The following are the general areas of skill that the evaluators are looking at during the tryout process:
Skating – speed, quickness, technique
♦ Forward and Backward
♦ Turn both directions
♦ Stop both directions
♦ Is the player in a good position for stability and strength?
Passing – technique, control, vision
♦ Forehand and Backhand
♦ To both moving and stationary targets
♦ Vision – does the player take a look and select best option
♦ Advanced – board passes, chips, saucer passes
Puck Control – technique, open ice, confined space
♦ Open carry with speed
♦ Execute dekes and fakes on the 1 on 1
♦ Can the player handle the puck in traffic and tight space
♦ Ability to maintain control while being poke-checked or body checked (age appropriate)
Shooting – technique, accuracy, velocity
♦ Forehand and backhand
♦ Wrist shot, snap shot, slap shot
♦ Shot Selection – does the player select the best shot for the opportunity?
Game Understanding – Principles of Offense and Defense
♦ Player understands positional play
♦ Player supports the puck on the defensive and offensive side of puck
♦ Player communicates with teammates
♦ Player has the ability to read and react.
Absentees - A player must attend the sessions they are assigned to; there will be no exceptions. If a player is unable to attend one assigned session from among sessions 1-4 (mites 1-3) due to illness, injury or other good cause, the excused player will be assigned to a subsequent session as determined by the A Team Coach and Division Director. If a player is unable to attend their assigned session from among sessions 5-7 (mites 4) the player will be placed on a team determined by the Evaluation Team and approved by the Vice-President of On-Ice Operations. If a player misses two or more assigned sessions, the player will be placed on a team determined by the Vice President of On-Ice Development, the Division Director and the Director of Coaching after consultation with that team’s coach.
Team Size - All Travel Teams will consist of a target size of 15 players up to the maximum allowed by CHC guidelines. The final roster size of the team will be at the discretion of the Head Coach, the Vice President of On-Ice Operations, and the Division Director. If a team consists of fewer than 20 regular players, additional players may be added to the roster (to the CHC division maximum) as alternates to be called up in the case of injury or unavailability of regular players.
Selections will be made based on skill and ability to play at a particular level, and not with an objective of building for the future; if all other things are equal, placement preference will be given to the older player.
Other Coaches Input - To allow coaches for A1 and/or B team coaches (who are not named until after the tryout sessions are complete) to have input as to the final composition of the team they will be coaching, final decisions on those rosters will be made in the day or two following the final session so that those coaches can be included in the discussions.