Tuesday, June 20, 2017
BC Hockey, along with the Yukon District, have announced that their zone programming for the 2017-2018 season will include a Bantam Tier One (1) team based in Whitehorse, Yukon to join the zone pilot league to include eight (8) Bantam and Midget zone teams across British Columbia and Yukon.
The team will be called the Yukon Rivermen. Player interest form Alaska, Northwest Territories, and northern British Columbia is welcomed. The mandatory Yukon Zone Identification Camp will take place August 4-6, 2017 in Whitehorse at the Canada Games Centre.
Along with the North West, East Kootenay and the Okanagan, the Yukon Zone Team will participate in the pilot program aimed at giving opportunities for players to join regional teams which was developed to allow players to play at the highest level and allows districts to provide regional teams and pull from a greater draw zone.
Hockey Yukon anticipates the Rivermen will have a 60-plus game season at Tier One (1) and AAA levels with exposure to teams from Western Canada and Alaska including the BC Hockey Zone Team League. Regular off-ice and skills training will be a core component to the program.
Martin Lawrie has been named the head coach of the Yukon Rivermen Bantam Zone team. He has engaged in the development of players, teams, and minor hockey organizations in Yukon, Whitehorse Minor Hockey Association (MHA) and Hockey Yukon, for over a decade.
A native of Churchill, Manitoba, Martin moved to Whitehorse and immediately engaged the hockey community. First as a player on the Senior men’s team in Yukon winning respective gold and silver medals in 1992 and 1994. Martin started his focus on coaching in 2004 and has developed a network throughout the recreational and competitive levels in the north, Alaska and western Canada. Martin has been an integral contributor and leader within Hockey Yukon developing high performance options and exposure for northern athletes. As head coach of the 2014-2015 Bantam Yukon Mustangs, he led the team to be the first Yukon-based team to win a BC Hockey Championship. His coach leadership is also felt on Team Yukon, as Men’s Head Coach for the 2015 Canada Winter Games and program mentorship of Team Yukon at Arctic Winter Games. Recently, Martin was the founding head coach for Hockey Yukon’s 2016-2017 and 2017-2018 U16AAA Mustangs.
Additional team staff assignments will be coordinated between BC Hockey and Hockey Yukon.
Hockey Yukon is a long-standing District Amateur Hockey Association within BC Hockey and the Territorial Sport Governing Body for amateur hockey in Yukon.
This past season, the Regional Zone Pilot Program was implemented in the Okanagan and has been very successful, allowing players in the region the opportunity to participate in Tier One (1) and Tier Two (2) hockey.
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