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Top Players Experience Goalie Nation

By Minnesota Hockey, 08/10/15, 3:00PM CDT

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The 2015 CCM HP Dave Peterson Goalie Camp, which ended this past weekend, provides the goalies with a unique experience.

The 2015 CCM Minnesota Hockey High Performance Dave Peterson Goalie Camp wrapped up this weekend after providing 50 of the top Minnesota goalies with a unique goaltending experience. The 25 boys and 25 girls, who received invites based on their participation in the CCM High Performance programs, were exposed to four days of specialized instruction on and off the ice.

The camp supplies goalies with 12 hours of on-ice instruction and a number of classroom sessions on topics such as mental skills development, vision training, yoga and opportunities after high school.

“These are highly motivated and highly talented goalies who want to take their game to a different level,” said Camp Director Steve Carroll. “We’ve had about 500 kids come through in the 11 years of our program, and the kids love it. It’s like goalie nation for a weekend.

With about 15 coaches from different goalie groups, four current collegiate goalies serving as counselors and a number of former goalies as administrators, the camp definitely earns that nickname.

“Even though a lot of these guys and gals run their own goalie camps or goalie schools, they come together for the weekend,” said Carroll. “They get involved and help these kids. They know that it’s for a good cause, and they can make a difference for this high end group of kids.”

The opportunity to interact with so many different coaches and to have one-on-one time with the Division I and Division III counselors sets the camp apart for many of its participants.

A great example is current Burnsville netminder and Bemidji State recruit, Lauren Bench. Bench has been coming to the camp since she was a freshman and continues to find new ways to improve her game each year.

“I really like all of the different coaches and learning different techniques and styles,” said Bench.  “I don’t always like every style that every coach is teaching, but it helps learning what other coaches think and even if you don’t like it, changing it a little to help your game… A lot of times when you get a new coach they see things the other coach didn’t just because you’re getting a new perspective. It helps you fix little things maybe you’ve been missing.”

Recent participant at the USA Hockey Boys Select 15 Player Development Camp, Keegan Karki echoed that sentiment.

“It’s better than anything I’ve ever had with a single goalie coach because you get points from each coach to try and improve your game,” said Karki, who is entering his sophomore season at St. Cloud Cathedral. “[You] take little bits and pieces of everything, put it into your game and see what works.”

The camp’s unique take on goalie development is evident in every aspect. During each on-ice session, the players are rotated through six stations where they participate in a new drill, often from a coach they’ve never worked with.  Between reps, the counselors spend time with the participants, mentoring them on a range of topics from the recruiting process to how to implement a new skill. Perhaps, most importantly, the coaches create a culture that encourages kids to be open to trying new things, even if it contradicts what they’ve been taught previously.

“The best part is that there isn’t a right or wrong way,” explained three-time participant and three-time counselor Amanda Koep.  “All of these coaches know that, and that’s what these coaches strongly encourage, ‘This is just one way to get from pipe to pipe’. It’s not, ‘Oh my gosh, you’re doing it wrong’. It’s, ‘Let’s try this’ and I think that’s very, very beneficial for a lot of people.”

With the goalies experiencing so many new drills and styles in just four days, it can be information overload. For many of them, that’s a good thing because they may not have a full time goalie coach on their high school team, but the challenge becomes how to capture the most important details so they can continue to hone those skills.

“The kids that are really paying attention take notes after each session,” said Carroll. “They’ll show me their notebook at the end of camp and say look at all of the stuff I’ve learned. High school kids taking notes in the summer on goalie development. I think it’s awesome. Those are the kids that truly want to get better. You have kids that want to play D-I hockey and D-III hockey, and they’re making the most of this experience.”

If history is an indicator, several of these players will eventually find themselves achieving that goal in the next few years as the camp has a growing list of boys and girls that have gone onto collegiate hockey.

“A couple years ago we had Zane McIntyre come through as a counselor,” said Carroll. “He came through as a high school kid. He won the Mike Richter Award as college hockey’s top goalie and signed a pro contract. Adam Wilcox did the same thing. He came through our camp as a high school player and came back as a counselor. We know that we’re helping in some manner. Are we the reason they’re at that level? No, but we know that we’ve helped them in some aspect of their game.”

The goalie camp is an official component of the CCM Minnesota Hockey High Performance programs which are conducted in conjunction with USA Hockey and are referred to as "Select" programs in other part of the country. The camp is named in honor of Dave Peterson, a former Minneapolis Southwest High School hockey coach, who was a passionate leader in goalie development for USA Hockey and served as the head coach of the U.S. men’s Olympic hockey teams in 1988 and 1992. 

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The 2015 CCM Minnesota Hockey High Performance Dave Peterson Goalie Camp wrapped up this weekend after providing 50 of the top Minnesota goalies with a unique goaltending experience. The 25 boys and 25 girls, who received invites based on their participation in the CCM High Performance programs, were exposed to four days of specialized instruction on and off the ice.

The camp supplies goalies with 12 hours of on-ice instruction and a number of classroom sessions on topics such as mental skills development, vision training, yoga and opportunities after high school.

“These are highly motivated and highly talented goalies who want to take their game to a different level,” said Camp Director Steve Carroll. “We’ve had about 500 kids come through in the 11 years of our program, and the kids love it. It’s like goalie nation for a weekend.

With about 15 coaches from different goalie groups, four current collegiate goalies serving as counselors and a number of former goalies as administrators, the camp definitely earns that nickname.

“Even though a lot of these guys and gals run their own goalie camps or goalie schools, they come together for the weekend,” said Carroll. “They get involved and help these kids. They know that it’s for a good cause, and they can make a difference for this high end group of kids.”

The opportunity to interact with so many different coaches and to have one-on-one time with the Division I and Division III counselors sets the camp apart for many of its participants.

A great example is current Burnsville netminder and Bemidji State recruit, Lauren Bench. Bench has been coming to the camp since she was a freshman and continues to find new ways to improve her game each year.

“I really like all of the different coaches and learning different techniques and styles,” said Bench.  “I don’t always like every style that every coach is teaching, but it helps learning what other coaches think and even if you don’t like it, changing it a little to help your game… A lot of times when you get a new coach they see things the other coach didn’t just because you’re getting a new perspective. It helps you fix little things maybe you’ve been missing.”

Recent participant at the USA Hockey Boys Select 15 Player Development Camp, Keegan Karki echoed that sentiment.

“It’s better than anything I’ve ever had with a single goalie coach because you get points from each coach to try and improve your game,” said Karki, who is entering his sophomore season at St. Cloud Cathedral. “[You] take little bits and pieces of everything, put it into your game and see what works.”

The camp’s unique take on goalie development is evident in every aspect. During each on-ice session, the players are rotated through six stations where they participate in a new drill, often from a coach they’ve never worked with.  Between reps, the counselors spend time with the participants, mentoring them on a range of topics from the recruiting process to how to implement a new skill. Perhaps, most importantly, the coaches create a culture that encourages kids to be open to trying new things, even if it contradicts what they’ve been taught previously.

“The best part is that there isn’t a right or wrong way,” explained three-time participant and three-time counselor Amanda Koep.  “All of these coaches know that, and that’s why these coaches strongly encourage, ‘This is just one way to get from pipe to pipe’. It’s not, ‘Oh my gosh, you’re doing it wrong’. It’s, ‘Let’s try this’ and I think that’s very, very beneficial for a lot of people.”

With the goalies experiencing so many new drills and styles in just four days, it can be information overload. For many of them, that’s a good thing because they may not have a full time goalie coach on their high school team, but the challenge becomes how to capture the most important details so they can continue to hone those skills.

“The kids that are really paying attention take notes after each session,” said Carroll. “They’ll show me their notebook at the end of camp and say look at all of the stuff I’ve learned. High school kids taking notes in the summer on goalie development. I think it’s awesome. Those are the kids that truly want to get better. You have kids that want to play D-I hockey and D-III hockey, and they’re making the most of this experience.”

If history is an indicator, several of these players will eventually find themselves achieving that goal in the next few years as the camp has a growing list of boys and girls that have gone onto collegiate hockey.

“A couple years ago we had Zane McIntyre come through as a counselor,” said Carroll. “He came through as a high school kid. He won the Mike Richter Award as college hockey’s top goalie and signed a pro contract. Adam Wilcox did the same thing. He came through our camp as a high school player and came back as a counselor. We know that we’re helping in some manner. Are we the reason they’re at that level? No, but we know that we’ve helped them in some aspect of their game.”

The goalie camp is an official component of the CCM Minnesota Hockey High Performance programs which are conducted in conjunction with USA Hockey and are referred to as "Select" programs in other part of the country. The camp is named in honor of Dave Peterson, a former Minneapolis Southwest High School hockey coach, who was a passionate leader in goalie development for USA Hockey and served as the head coach of the U.S. men’s Olympic hockey teams in 1988 and 1992. 

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