Three Franchises Added for 2014-2015 Season
One franchise has also changed ownership.
Northern States Junior Hockey League is proud to announce the addition of three teams for the 2014-2015 season.
The Roc City Royals of Rochester, New York, is a new franchise that will join the NSHL. Owner and general manager Jack Slade started the franchise with the goal that it become development program to move players to college hockey or a higher level of juniors.
“I’d seen the league and thought it was a competitive league to play in,” said Slade of his decision to enter his team in the NSHL. “We wanted to have a team in the Rochester area that could be a great place for development.”
Slade has been coaching hockey since 1974 and also has a strong background in recruiting.
“Mainly this (team) is to give local kids a place to play competitive hockey and advance them,” he said. “The response has been good and recruiting has been going very well.”
The Lockport Express, of Lockport, New York, is another franchise entering the NSHL next season.
“We are very excited to be joining the NSHL for the 2014-2015 season. The league provides high quality Junior A hockey and is extremely well run,” said Head Coach and General Manager Frank Vecchio. “We are looking forward to the challenge of building a quality program that provides players the opportunity to advance to the college level and beyond, while also providing the opportunity for a quality education. We fully expect to be an asset to the NSHL.”
The Central New York Stallions will be another new addition for 2014-2015. Team owner Michael Beavis also owns the Syracuse Stampede of the NSHL. Their home rink will be at Morrisville State College.
“Part of the reason for forming the Stallions was the opportunity to help the NSHL brand by creating a solid foundation for an Eastern and Western division for the league,” said Beavis. “Along with the other new members in the West, Lockport & Roc City Royals, the Stallions will join the Syracuse, Wilkes-Barre and Jersey Shore which should be a very competitive division.”
Beavis said the team will build quality relationships will local college coaches.
“I think with the success that the Stampede has had over the past few seasons, the Stallions will be able to add to that with the NSHL franchise actually running out of a SUNY school campus,” said Beavis. “We are currently interviewing several quality coaches for the head coach job with the Stallions. Even though the team has been a bit low key over the past couple moths, there has been quite a buzz in the Central New York area over the formation of the team and its relationship with several area college coaches.”
Finally, the Maine Moose sold their franchise to new owner Jeff Dupere, who has changed the name to the Maine Timberwolves. Dupere worked with the Moose last season and is excited to own a team in the NSHL.
“I’ve been in hockey my entire life and I felt like I was in a position to take that step and purchase a team to work with them and better them, and help them move on in education and in hockey,” he said.
Dupere, whose father was an Olympic hockey player, played major juniors in Canada and had to retire due to injuries. Ever since then, he has mainly worked with hockey players in a strength and condition aspect. This will be his first time coaching juniors.
“I spent this past season working with the Moose and training them and I really enjoyed watching them grow and working with them,” he said. “I’m excited to bring my philosophies to the game and my expertise in training off and on the ice. I’m excited to work with this agr group and turn them into better young men and better hockey players.”