When the Dave Peterson Goalie Camp was developed as a part of the CCM High Performance programs 14 years ago, Steve Carroll and his team knew they wouldn’t be able to completely change how goalies play within the short time they had them at camp. Instead, they decided to put the focus on introducing the state’s top goalies to a variety of coaches, drills and ideas and empower the goalies to implement what works best for their own game.
The same philosophy continues today in the Dave Peterson Goalie Camp, which concluded Sunday in St. Cloud, MN.
“Why would you not want 15 or 20 different perspectives on how to do things,” said Carroll, who continues to serve as camp director. “We’ve never said that ‘Coach #6, if you listen to him, you’re going to the NHL.’ The idea has always been listen to all of the ideas that are out there, take them in, incorporate what you think helps your game and go for it.”
This unique approach has played a key role in attracting many of the state’s top goaltenders, including current professionals Zane McIntyre, Adam Wilcox and Charlie Lindgren, as well as helping each participant achieve their goals.
“There are some very talented goalies that attend this camp,” said Carroll. “We want to fine tune them and help them elevate their game so they can continue to succeed in high school. Many of them have aspirations of playing beyond high school, whether it’s college or professional.”
Two great examples from this year’s camp include Alexa Dobchuk and Atticus Kelly. Dobchuk has helped guide the Eden Prairie Eagles to back-to-back MSHSL Class AA State Tournament appearances and was chosen to attend USA Hockey’s Select 66 National Camp this spring. Kelly also led his high school team, St. Thomas Academy, to the Minnesota Boys State High School Hockey Tournament and was selected to attend the USA Hockey Select 17 Player Development Camp.
“Usually when you go to a camp, it’s for one thing or one team or one coach,” said Kelly. “There’s a ton different coaches here and you work on a variety of things. You get to take and pick what you like to use for your game.”
Dobchuk, who participated in camp for her third year in a row, took it a step further saying she brings a notebook in order to write down the drills she likes as well as areas she needs to work on.
“There’s just so many things that you can improve on in a relatively short amount of time,” said Dobchuk. “It’s really good to get all of the information, and then you can go home and use it.”
For players such as Dominik Caspers, who lives and plays in Marshall, MN where there isn’t immediate access to the state’s top goalie coaches, the wealth of ideas and concepts presented at camp also offer him an opportunity to elevate the level of goaltending throughout his community. Caspers said he planned on sitting down with several of the other goalies back home to share what he had learned.
“As goalie coaching becomes more prevalent at every level, they’re going to come across all kinds of different coaches with different theories,” said Osaer. “Much like forwards and defensemen might come across coaches with different systems. It’s a great opportunity for the goalies to figure out who they are and what works best for them. That’s growth and that’s development.”
“The kids like it,” said Carroll. “Once they understand that we’re here to help them get better, and that’s our goal. Then, it really becomes a cool learning environment.
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