Tregenza, Rooney lead hockey team to tourney win
Anyone who is interested in playing local youth ice hockey is either all too familiar with Newport County Youth Hockey Association (NCYHA) or will be very soon. The hockey season is long, the rinks are cold, and the kids and parents are often at practice before the sun comes up, but ice hockey continues to be a popular sport for kids of all ages.
NCYHA is comprised of over 25 house and travel teams, which practice at St. George's School and Portsmouth Abbey ice rinks.
Beginning with the Learn to Skate and Instructional programs, skaters can then continue to play in-house or travel on one of the many age-based Mite, Squirt, Pee- Wee, Bantam and Midget teams.
The season starts in early October and at age 3 kids can join in the Learn to Skate program, which teaches the fundamentals of hockey skating. In the Instructional Program, ages 4 through 8, emphasis is on power forward skating, backward skating, stopping, crossovers, stick-handling, passing and shooting. The goal is to ready players for the following season of Mite House League and/ or Mite Travel.
The NCYHA House League Hockey Program is intended for the beginner and intermediate player to enjoy the sport of hockey with emphasis on players' skills, sportsmanship and love of the game. House league skaters are evaluated early in the season to assure even player distribution on the house teams and every player is assigned to a team regardless of skill level.
The NCYHA Travel Program is more intense in practice and competition. The Whalers Travel program competes in the Rhode Island Youth Hockey League, comprised of teams from across Rhode Island and Southeastern Massachusetts and the season runs from September through April.
Middletown resident Brad Read is on the board of directors and divides his time as a coach of the Squirt A2 and Mite B travel teams. With over 300 skaters in the program, Read noted the commitment of players and parents. "We (NCYHA) are a total volunteer organization. Without the coaches and the parents we would not be able to survive," he said.
Teams are co-ed and according to Read, it has been the norm for girls to compete on co-ed ice hockey teams since the early 1990s. "In general, the girls pick up the game fast and are incredibly coachable," Read said.
Island residents participating in NCYHA include Ian Brayman, Mason, Max, and Michael Coletta, David and Matthew DeMeiri, Gage DeVellis, Talley Larkin, Aili and Colin Moffet, Aidan and Fergus O'Farrell, Bud Olderwurtel, Conor Rooney, Charlie, Jack and Madison Tregenza, and Adrian van der Wal. Jamestown coaches include Michael Coletta, David Moffett and John Tregenza.
Rooney and Tregenza star in hockey tournament
Conor Rooney and Charlie Tregenza are members of NCYHA's Squirt A2 travel team, which recently won the 2007 Holy Name Tournament, which was played Nov. 16 through 18 at the Springfield, MA. Olympia Ice Center.
Islanders Rooney and Tregenza each scored goals in the first game of the round robin tournament and Tregenza had an assist to win the first game against Holy Name 5- 0. Newport took the second game and Rooney had a hat trick. Newport lost the third game to Capital Youth of Albany, NY but got a chance to retaliate in the championship game when they played them a second time. Only six minutes into the first period, Rooney scored his first goal making it 2- 0. He also scored the last goal of the game, giving the team the 7-2 win.
Rooney ended the four-game tournament with 13 points in goals and assists. Tregenza had two goals and one assist. When asked what the coach said before the final game, Tregenza said, "We went over what we had to work on and what plays we should do. He said to do your best."
Rooney summed up why Newport played so much better in the final game against Capital Youth by saying, "We had more time to talk to our coach before the game and we went to bed earlier."
Head coach Brad Read said, "We have been lucky this year. This team has a really good work ethic for 10 year olds. They have the ability to listen and they take well to coaching; watching these kids pass is remarkable."
The winners took home the 5- foot-high trophy, which will be passed around to each player on the team for a week.
NCYHA Mite B travel team play during P-Bruins game
NCYHA's Mite B travel team played against Lincoln between the second and third periods of the Providence Bruins game versus the Manchester Monarchs on Nov. 25. Throughout the season local Mite teams are invited to play between periods of the P-Bruins hockey games at the Dunkin Donuts Center in Providence.
The final score was 1-1 with Newport's lone goal scored by Jamestown resident Madison Tregenza. Seven-year-old Tregenza has been playing hockey since she was 3 and when asked what her favorite thing is about hockey, she said, "Skating hard and scoring a goal". Other islanders on the team include Mason Coletta and Colin Moffet.
For more information on Newport Hockey, visit www.ncyha. org.