|South Jersey Ice Hockey:
Hollydell Hurricanes Mites A Team Looking to Make the Hall
Wednesday, January 15, 2003
By Mike Costantino
SJSports Staff Writer
They've been together as a team practicing and playing for the last 18 months and come Super Bowl weekend, they will be playing in a tournament that would gain them entry into the Hockey Hall of Fame. The Hollydell Hurricanes Mite A team, consisting of 15 boys born between 1994 and 1995, will travel to Michigan to play in the Silver Stick National North American Championships. The round robin tournament consists of teams from across North America, with the winner recognized in the Hall of Fame.
Guy Gaudreau and two assistants, Bud Robinson and Mike Siciliano, coach the Mites. Over the Thanksgiving holiday, the Mites traveled to Boston for a tournament and came home winners. While that experience should help the Mites, they are probably too young to even realize the pressure of playing in a national tournament. Assistant Coach Siciliano, who also coaches at the high school level, believes "the talent level for this age group is really unusual and it's the first time we have a team competing at this kind of level." The team was comprised by kids from the local area and has spent a year playing in-house hockey.
The Mites qualified for the tournament by winning the regional held in West Chester earlier in the season. Most of the team, along with their parents, will make the 11 hour trip via the bus. Planning and organizing the trips all fall into the lap of the manager Maureen Robinson, entering her third year. Maureen enjoys the friendships she has developed and watching the kids enjoying themselves. Between scheduling, planning, making reservations and being a hockey mom, Maureen could probably use a few more hours in the day.
Running the team through their drills is Coach Gaudreau, born in Vermont near the Province of Quebec, has been coaching since 1980. Coach Gaudreau feels this team is special, "They do a lot of extra stuff during practice, they've learned the game extremely well, our defenseman and forwards know how to regroup and breakout of the zone." While most of South Jersey will be watching the Super Bowl and marking the end to a great season, the Mites will be trying to make their own mark and become the first team from South Jersey to win this prestigious tournament. We wish them well.