Dear BYH Community,
First and foremost, my apologies for the delay in this communication as we, the BYH Board of Directors have been actively communicating and monitoring the CDC and State mandated guidelines, startup of Phase 2 activities, and information from USA and Mass Hockey. We determined we didn’t want to announce anything before we had as much information as possible on the upcoming BYH season. The last several months have been a very difficult time for everyone, and we hope that all of you are in good health and spirits during this unprecedented situation.
We write to provide updates on the upcoming BYH program for the 2020-2021 year. It will not be surprising to you that some aspects of the program remain entirely uncertain, as we move through the different phases of the State’s phased reopening, and we wait to hear from the authorities and leagues regarding what will be permissible come the August/September timeframe. While you can be reassured that your players’ safety is our foremost priority, we also understand that everyone is anxious to receive information about the coming year, including especially our upcoming plans for team selections, additional tryouts, and the beginning of the season.
For team selections, we were fortunate to have been able to conduct at least one try-out for each level from the Mites through the Bantams prior to the closings. We are going to use those tryout scores, plus the coach evaluations from end of the 2020 season (which are very importantly considered), to select players for next year’s teams.
Given that there was only one tryout day (Mites-Bantams) and that there was players who registered to tryout who may not have had a chance to make the one tryout, never mind other aspects to consider, we will be intentionally selecting a smaller number of players for the upper teams.
We will continue to evaluate all players during the start of the season during parity and will make additional permanent team selections to round out the teams. We understand that there is anxiety associated with players wanting to know what team they have made, so we are preliminarily setting teams, but our goal is to ensure that each player will be placed on the best team for their skill set. Please understand this is an unprecedented time of events and we are adapting our approach to be the fairest to all players/families. We would appreciate you hold off on any questions regarding this process until/if the season starts as we are hoping and planning for.
Unfortunately, the U18 (Midget) Teams and all of our Goalies from PeeWee to Midgets did not have the opportunity to have a try-out. We are working on a plan to accommodate at least a single day try-out for both the U18 players and the Goalies. We are currently waiting on what the guidelines from the State for Phase 3 will be for the next round of openings.
Our plan is to release the initial team placements through the respective head coach by the second week of August for the Mites through Bantams. At that time, if we have adequate information, we will also announce our plans for the try-outs for the U18 players and goalies.
For our younger skaters, we will wait for State and VHL guidance regarding our cross-ice and learn-to-skate programs, but we are hopeful that they will be able to start on their normal fall schedule, albeit perhaps with modifications.
We hope that all of our skaters are working hard to stay in shape, utilizing off-ice workouts or just running around being kids. There are so many great resources online that focus on skill-developing drills, and of course so many other ways to work to stay fit, even at home. We also know that certain of the local skills program providers have started to open programs (with appropriate attendance limits), so those are worth investigating if you are desperate to get on the ice.
Thank you all for your patience and understanding during this difficult time, and hopefully we will be on the ice soon enough with this COVID-19 Pandemic behind us.
We greatly appreciate your continued cooperation, understanding and support.
BYH Board of Directors