For the 2015-2016 season Hanover Hockey will operate the following programs:
Ages are as of December 31 of the current season
General information is below
Learn to Play Wild (LTPW) age 4-8 coed
Wild Mites (WM) (Mite House program) age 5-8 coed
Travel Mites age 7-8 coed
Squirts age 9-10 coed
PeeWees age 11-12 coed
Bantams age 13-14 coed
Midgets age 15-17
Girls Development girls age 8-12
Girls 10U Travel girls age 9-10
Girls 12U Travel girls age 11-12
Girls 14U Travel girls age 13-14
Hanover Hockey Association (HHA) offers a progressive series of programs for boys and girls from age 4 through high school. For very young skaters (players turning age 4-8 by Dec. 31), and just learning to play hockey, HHA offers the LEARN TO PLAY WILD (LTPW) program. For young and entry-level players (players turning age 5-8 this calendar year) who have played Learn To Play for at least one year and are starting to learn the game of hockey and are ready for a bit more action, HHA offers the WILD MITES (WM) program.
Beginning at the Mite level (Mites are players age 8 and under as of December 31) and continuing through the Bantam level, HHA also offers Travel teams that play in the Granite State League (GSL) and, in some cases as determined year to year, on an independent basis. The GSL is a competitive New Hampshire hockey league that has multiple tiers within each age group with Tier 1 being the most competitive level. Hanover Travel teams are placed at levels that allow them to have a competitive hockey experience. Additionally HHA has over the past three years worked to build a House/Local hockey program for boys and girls age nine and older.
The Association also offers a Girls Program that either plays in the GSL or an independent schedule. Each of these programs are described below with additional information on the GIRLS page on this site.
LEARN-TO-PLAY WILD (LTPW)
New players ages 4-8 with no previous hockey experience will register with Learn To Play Wild (LTPW). We expect that LTPW players have enough skating skill to move forward on the ice without assistance. (A select few older players, and those who demonstrate sufficient skill, may be invited to join the Wild Mite program no later than early December, if numbers allow). The on-ice sessions will feature an active clinic-style approach to the practices with lots of hands-on coaching and instruction. There will be three separate 7-week sessions, so players can register for all three, or just one session. Registration for each session is open all year. The LTPW program is designed so that the youngest players (for instance, those starting LTPW at age 4 and 5) can spend a second season in LTPW before moving up to the Wild Mite (WM) program; younger players should consider this option.
For more info, please click on the Learn To Play tab.
Players ages 5-8 who have completed one year in the LTPW program are eligible for Wild Mites (WM), which is a developmental House Mite program. The WM program is important to player development as skating and puck skills are reinforced while the fundamental elements of team play, rules and team hockey skills are taught. The program is designed so that players can spend multiple years in Wild Mites and it is recommended that players strongly consider a second year in the Wild Mite program before trying out for travel hockey. The WM program will feature a clinic-style pre-season followed by a team season including team practices, games between the HHA Wild Mite teams, and some games between our teams and house mite teams from other local associations. These games will be cross-ice initially and may move to full ice games. Last year we sent one team to an invitational tournament and concluded the season with a Jamboree at Thompson Arena.
For more info, please click on the Mite tab.
Players age 7-8 who have played at least one season with the Wild Mites are encouraged to try out for Travel Mites. Travel teams usually practice 2 times per week (generally on weekday afternoons/evenings) and play 1-2 games per weekend. The games will be against teams from other hockey associations in NH and Vermont so there can be travel throughout the twin-state area but efforts are made to keep the travel as close as possible. The team will likely go to 1 or 2 tournaments during the season. The commitment to Travel Mites is a step up from Wild Mites not only in the frequency of skating but also in the expectation that kids (and families) will attend practices and games as they are truly part of a team that depends on them.
Tryouts at the Squirt level will determine whether a player will be assigned to the Green, White, Blue, or Red team. In general, it is expected that players registering at the Squirt level will have been introduced to hockey via at least the Learn To Play Wild program and will have experienced competitive play at the House level, if not also at the Travel Mite level. However, it is possible for a novice skater to begin playing at the Squirt level and make rapid progress, and the Squirt Blue/Red team is appropriate for a beginning hockey player.
The teams practice twice per week with an additional Skills Practice each week until Christmas and generally will often have games on both Saturday and Sunday. They will complement league play with games against non-league opponents in New Hampshire and Vermont. This team typically plays in the GSL season ending tournament if they qualify.
The Squirt Green team will emphasize refinement of individual skills and the ability to execute at high speed and under more competitive situations. Team play will be further developed by emphasizing positioning and introducing more complex team situations. The Squirt White team can be expected to incorporate more complex individual skills and team concepts. Players at this level are expected to have a sound understanding of the rules of the game and will begin developing a deeper appreciation of team play. The Squirt Blue team will focus on continued development of basic individual hockey skills utilizing numerous drills and small area games. This team generally plays a GSL schedule made up of games against teams of comparable skill. Travel on this team is sometimes more limited than the other GSL teams.
Hanover is in its third year of hosting a Pee Wee Elite team, which is open to players from VT and NH and plays a highly competitive Tier I schedule with significantly more travel than the traditional HHA PW teams. Team skates three times a week for practice and has games most every weekend.
The Pee Wee Green, White, and Blue teams are in the GSL and play with games against other New Hampshire and Vermont teams. Each team has two practices per week plus a Skills practice until Christmas and generally will have games on both Saturday and Sunday. These teams typically play in the GSL season ending tournament if they qualify and often one or two other tournaments. At this level, all players are assumed to be relatively skilled in the basics of skating, understand team concepts, and know the rules of the game.
The Bantam level is the first level at which body checking is permitted. While "Body Contact" is part of the game at the younger ages and encouraged by USA Hockey and taught as part of being a successful player at all ages, speed and size are major factors in successful play. Although many players look forward to checking, the nature of growth patterns can cause a very large disparity in the players' sizes. Legal and appropriate methods of checking, and the preparation for being checked, will be taught by the coaches.
Speed, size and intensity are even more important factors at Bantams. At Bantams, players are developing physically at very different rates, and coaching will emphasize high levels of skill and speed and execution with strength. Players are developing the skills that will allow them to try out for the High School team. Shooting, passing and moving without the puck are strong requirements, as are a demonstrated understanding of the rules and efficient team play.
Bantam teams will complement GSL play with games against other New Hampshire and Vermont teams and teams will play in the GSL season ending tournament if they qualify plus one or two additional tournaments.
Hanover currently does not sponsor a Midget team, but in the past has operated both Boys and Girls Split-Season teams with success. These teams are decided on annually and HHA may operate a team again in the future.
For detailed information on the Girls Program, please Click Here
Open to girls ages 8-12 that are new to hockey and are looking for a less competitive option for hockey. This team will play a limited travel schedule starting later into the season. There will not be a tryout held for this team.
12U White Travel Team
This team will be an independent team (not in the State league) and designed for players with some experience (ie. coming out of the Development Program) but how are not ready for the level of play of a Green team or the time commitment. Team will play 20-25 games with many being local. The team will attend 1-2 tournaments and practice twice a week with additional Skills Practices in the beginning.
10U - 12U- 14U Travel Teams
These teams will be based on a tryout. They all play in the Granite State Hockey League and will be a competitive travel hockey teams.