After two years in the developmental program it’s finally time to play some real games. Travel team tryouts are held each March and teams are announced in June. MYH typically has around 12-15 travel teams for mites, squirts, pee wees, bantams and midgets. The teams play in the Valley League and the season begins after Labor Day and ends in Mid-April. A typical week for a travel team player consists of a weekday practice, a weekday turbo scrimmage, a weekday skills practice and a weekend game. MYH primarily holds practices at the Haverhill Valley Forum, Brooks School (North Andover), The Governor’s Academy (Byfield) and Hat Trick Training Center (Middleton). Travel teams are entered into the Valley League according to their experience and skill level and adjustments are made through parity to ensure that divisions are balanced. Games are generally scheduled on Saturdays and Sundays although weeknight games are common for older players. Games are played at a number of rinks on the north shore and the northwest suburbs.
MYH is committed to developing player skills. There are several ways in which this is accomplished. One of the ways in which we develop a players ability is through a “skills program” that is run by outside professionals at the Mite, Squirt and Pee Wee levels. Skills will typically cover one of the following: edge control, balance, stopping & starting, acceleration, pivots, crossovers, stick handling, shooting and 1-on-1 battles. Another method is called “turbo hockey.” Turbo hockey is a scrimmage that is played either 2-on-2 or 3-on-3. A turbo rink is much smaller than a traditional rink and forces player to make quick decisions by taking away time and space. Lastly, practices and games further reinforce skill development through repetition and positional play is taught.
Travel Tournaments & Local Tournaments
Most teams at the Mite level and above will play in one or more tournaments during the course of the season. These tournaments include the Can-Am tournament held in Lake Placid, NY, and the Deep Freeze tournament held in Waterville, ME. Individual MYH travel teams also enter into local tournaments as they see fit. Tournament fees are additional to the annual tuition fee. The tournaments usually consist of round-robin play leading up to a championship game.