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2016-17 EHL Champions

    Recent EHL Junior Team News

    SEASON PREVIEW 2017-18

    By Joe Sindoni 08/21/2017, 1:00pm EDT

    Recap of Last Year and A Look at the 2017-18 Season

    PHOTO CREDIT: MARISA MASSO

     

     

    With summer winding down it means the start one thing, Jr. Flyers Hockey Season! This is the fifth season of the Eastern Hockey League and one of the top priorities is getting players scouted and committed to College. The Jr. Flyers sent 12 players off to DIII Hockey for the upcoming season. There are a few changes to the league for the upcoming 2017-18 season. Last season the EHL was divided into two divisions, Premier and Elite (Junior A, Junior B)

    For the upcoming 2017-18 season the divisions will be:

    • EHL (Junior A)
    • EHL Premier (Junior B)

    Last season the EHL it went by Premier and Elite, so let’s do a quick recap. The Jr. Flyers Premier (Junior A) team had an outstanding season. Despite injuries to key players throughout the season there was a next man up mentality and the team caught fire. In the second half of the season, after the holiday break, the Jr. Flyers were one of the hottest teams in the EHL and carried a 14 game win streak into the playoffs. The wins came against top opponents such as the Little Flyers, Revolution and Cyclones. The Jr. Flyers won 20 of their final 21 games and the only loss was in overtime so they still gained a point. The success continued into the postseason beating the Hartford Jr. Wolfpack, and East Coast Wizards in the first two rounds. The Jr. Flyers met the defending Champion New Hampshire Monarchs in the semi finals and swept them earning them a spot in the EHL Finals against their biggest rival, the Little Flyers. In a best of 5 series the Jr. Flyers won the title in overtime of game 5 crowning them the Champions of the Eastern Hockey League.

    The Jr. Flyers Elite team also had a successful season. Scoring wasn’t a problem as goals came from lines one through four on a daily basis. It was their depth that made them such dangerous team. All season the bounced back and forth with the rival Philadelphia Revolution. The playoffs were different in the Elite Division so the 1st round of the playoffs was Round Robin. It was in this round that the incredible season for the Jr. Flyers would end.

    EHL Division

    Now that we are caught up, let’s get back to the changes for the upcoming season. For the EHL Jr. Flyers team the season has been extended to 50 games, two games more than last year. They will play inside their division (Mid Atlantic) for 18 games, meaning they’ll see the Philadelphia Revolution, Philadelphia Little Flyers and Wilkes-Barre Scranton Knights 6 times each. A big thing changing this year is the Playoff Format. There will be 12 teams that make the playoffs and each division winner will get a first round bye (4 teams total). For the rest of the teams it will be a Best of 3 series. The 2nd round will carry the same format and is best of 3. For the first two rounds, the lower seed only gets a home game if the venues are within 125 miles or less from each other. When there are four teams remaining the playoffs will shift to a neutral site. It will be just one game to see who goes to the finals and then the final two play one game to crown a champion.

    Here are the division breakdowns for this season:

    NORTHERN CONFERENCE

                New England Division

                            Vermont Lumberjacks

                            New England Wolves

                            Valley Jr. Warriors

                            New Hampshire Avalanche

                Boston Division

                            Boston Jr. Rangers

                            East Coast Wizards

                            Walpole Express

                            Total Athletics Seahawks

    SOUTHERN CONFERENCE

                Central Division

                            Connecticut RoughRiders

                            Connecticut Oilers

                            New York Applecore

                            New York Bobcats

                Mid-Atlantic Division

                            Philadelphia Jr. Flyers

                            Philadelphia Revolution

                            Philadelphia Little Flyers

                            Wilkes-Barre Scranton Knights

     

    EHL Premier Division

     As of right now there is no clear playoff format for the Premier Division, and the teams will play in a 44 game season. In the EHL Premier are 13 teams that will be divided into two conferences.

    NORTHERN CONFERENCE

                Boston Jr. Rangers

                New England Wolves

                Valley Jr. Warriors

                Vermont Lumberjacks

                Walpole Express

    SOUTHERN CONFERENCE

                            Central Penn Panthers

                            Jersey Wildcats

                            New Jersey 87s

                            New Jersey Renegades

                            New York Applecore

                            Philadelphia Little Flyers

                            Philadelphia Jr. Flyers

        Philadelphia Revolution

     

    You can watch every Philadelphia Jr. Flyers game (Both Divisions) this season live on HockeyTV.com. Just log on and subscribe and Jr. Flyers games will be accessed at the click of a button. You can watch the game from any smart device (phones, TVs, IPad etc.)  and if you miss a game you can go back and watch it in the “On Demand” section of HockeyTV.

    Want all things Jr. Flyers? Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter @EHLJRFlyers. Here you'll find in game scoring updates, highlights, and weekly articles. If you want to see what’s happening around the league check them out at easternhockeyleague.org. Also check out the league on Facebook (Eastern Hockey League and Eastern Hockey League Premier) and on Twitter @EHL_Hockey and @EHLP_Hockey.

    The preseason is right around the corner as both teams will be taking on the Hampton Road Whalers on September 1st, preseason games won’t be aired but that could change. If so we will notify on our social media platforms. The 2017-18 season is just around the corner as training camp ends on Friday (8/25) and the Jr. Flyers will be in action soon.

     

    By: Joe Sindoni

    Staff Writer

    Play By Play Announcer

    BLOOMER COMMITS

    By Joe Sindoni 05/18/2017, 7:30pm EDT

    Defenseman Matt Bloomer Commits to DIII Hockey

    (PHOTO CREDIT MARISA MASSO)

     

    JRFlyers defenseman Matt Bloomer is heading to NCAA DIII Hockey. The 5’11 Rochester, New York native will be suiting up for Castleton University in Vermont next season. Bloomer didn’t start the season with the JRFlyers. He was part of the Northern Conferences New Hampshire Monarchs. Two years ago as part of their Elite team then moving up to the Premier team for the 2016-2017 season.  Bloomer was on the move again in December but this time he was heading to West Chester, PA to join the JRFlyers. As soon as he got there he was put right in the middle of the action. Multiple injuries to the JRFlyers defensive unit had Bloomer in the starting lineup upon arrival. I actually found out that I was going to be joining the JRFlyers after the Holiday Break right before the JRFlyers vs Monarchs game the day before break. The transition from the Monarchs to the JRFlyers was fairly smooth as I knew I was coming from one successful organization to go to another. The JRFlyers started out the year strong so I was excited to be joining a winning atmosphere where I could help the team be successful. Not really knowing anyone at first was something that I had never experienced before. Immediately I felt the veteran presence in the locker room, and all of the guys made me feel welcomed and comfortable in a new atmosphere. I am extremely thankful that the guys made the transition so simple.” There was one more chapter for Bloomer with the Monarchs. The JRFlyers and Monarchs met in the Eastern Hockey League Semi Finals where the JRFlyers swept the Monarchs (Who were the reigning Champs from the year before) to advance to the Finals. “Playing against my old team was something that I was certainly looking forward to once I got moved and I knew it wouldn’t happen until late in the playoffs. I had a very close relationship with most of the guys, and played with some of them the past two seasons. Although this was the one series that I was very excited about, I knew that we had to handle it just like any other series we played and in the end we moved on.” In the Finals the JRFlyers won the Championship over their division rival, the Little Flyers in overtime of Game 5. Bloomer is the 12th JRFlyer that has committed to play DIII Hockey next season.

    It was certainly a great ride for Bloomer as he leaves junior hockey a Champion. But also reflects on what has helped him become a better player. “The biggest learning experience playing for the JRFlyers is that if everyone buys in and competes, in both games and practices, you will have success. The whole year we competed hard, never gave up, and out worked our opponents. This hard working mentality will transition to college and will lead to success.”

    Castleton is the next step for Bloomer in his hockey journey. While attending he plans on getting his degree in Accounting, and already has goals set. “The biggest goal for me is to continue to be successful. We have all seen what hard work leads to, so working hard in the classroom and on the ice will lead to success in terms of education and on the ice as well where the goal is to win. With that being said, I also just want to take everything one day at a time and success will come.” Bloomer will be joining fellow defenseman Chris Butryn who committed to Castleton earlier in the season, and he talked about continuing hockey with a teammate. “Going to Castleton with Bootch (Butryn) will not only make the transition from juniors to college easier, but I think we will work well together on the ice. We had times when we played together this season and we complement each other very well. We know how each other play and if we have the chance to be partners I believe we can thrive together.”

    Coach Domish is excited for Bloomer’s next challenge as he heads to DIII Hockey. “I knew he was a great skater and that is very important at this level. Matthew is a very hard worker who is very willing to learn and very coachable. He’s a great skater who has the capability to become a power play defenseman. He keeps everything simple and plays within himself; he takes very little risk and is very good defensively. He will be a very solid d-man at Castleton and should be able to be an everyday player. It will be fun knowing that he and Chris Butryn will get to play for another four years together. I think them being together will be great as they can talk to each other as they go through the ups and downs of this sport.”

    Bloomer’s career at the junior level has come and gone but he wanted to thank those who have helped along the way and leave a final message to his teammates. “I would like to thank my family for always supporting me no matter where I am. All of my coaches, especially Coach Jerry Domish and Coach Jason Kilcoyne for giving me the opportunity this season and helping me become a better player. Thank you to everyone else that helped the team, our trainers, our announcer Joe Sindoni, and our equipment manager Chris Cowan. I also need to thank Coach Silengo at Castleton for giving me this opportunity. And last, but not least, all of my teammates, without them I would not be where I am today. To all of my teammates on the JRFlyers I would like to say thank you again, you guys really made this year a special one and one that we will never forget.  Also, good luck to all of you as you move on with your careers whether it is in college or juniors.”

    Congratulations Matt on a successful junior career. All of your hard work has paid off, thank you for your dedication to the JRFlyers.  Even though your time here was short, your impact was huge for this organization. You leave as a Champion and we are grateful to have you as a member of the JRFlyers family.

     

    By Joe Sindoni

    Staff Writer

    Play By Play Announcer

    CASTAGNA COMMITS

    By Joe Sindoni 05/12/2017, 7:15pm EDT

    JRFlyers Defenseman Sean Castaga Headed for DIII Hockey

    (PHOTO CREDIT MARISA MASSO) 

     

    JRFlyers defenseman Sean Castagna has committed to play Division III Hockey next season. The 6’0 d-man from Wilmington, Delaware is heading to Worcester State University in Massachusetts. This was Castagna’s second year with the JRFlyers, and he was a core member of a veteran defense for the team which won the Eastern Hockey League Title.  Castagna wasn’t the type of defenseman that would light the lamp every game. Instead, what you saw was a player who led by example. A player who consistently gave his best effort day in and day out each time he was on the ice. Castagna was on the ice a lot contributing to the power play and penalty kill, categories in which the JRFlyers were near the top in the league. He didn’t have a flashy game but he was fundamentally sound, and did the little things correctly and that’s why he had success at the junior level. Castagna ends his junior career a championship; it doesn’t get any better than that, as he reflects on his time in West Chester. “The last two years have flown by, but I'm so glad I chose to play juniors. The friendships and bonds that I have formed are ones that will never be broken. The amount of adversity that we had to overcome this season was unbelievable, and we overcame it all and won the Championship to end our junior career. I have learned how to adapt to new systems, new work ethic, and most importantly how to keep my game simple. I have learned how to protect myself better, and also that if a team works together, it will find a way to win together.”

    Worcester is the next step for Castagna as he heads to College hockey. Right now he is undecided what he will major in but still has goals set for his future. “My number one goal for college hockey is to be the player Worcester saw in me. I want to continue to play great defense, but graduating with a college degree might be just as important.” Castagna also joins teammate and forward Matt Manning who committed to Worcester earlier in the season so they will continue to be teammates as the road to college hockey approaches. “I think the ‘Manno-Stags’ offensive-defensive combination will be great. We know how each other plays. We will be able to read each other and help the play. If we are on the ice together we know we have each other's backs so the game will come naturally.”

    Head Coach Jerry Domish is thrilled for Castagna next step as he moves to College Hockey. “I was very glad he came back to play a second season with us. He is a very good defenseman. His skating has improved a lot in the time he has been here, and he is an excellent skater now and as a d-man that is important. He has good poise with the puck, and he is a strong player on the offensive blue line. Worcester has always been a decent team but couldn’t get over the hump. I think him and Matt (Manning) are going to help them in a big way, I don’t think they realize yet just how much those two will help them.”

    It was a successful career for Castagna, but he sheds light on all of those who helped along the way. “I would like to thank all my family, friends, teammates and coaches that have helped me get to where I am today. I would like to thank Jerry (Domish) and Jason (Kilcoyne) for the last two years for believing in me and helping me improve my game. I would also like to thank Joe Sindoni for all his hard work with the team all year, and I would like to thank Chris Cowan our equipment manager for all he did this season.”

    Castagna leaves the JRFlyers which wasn’t just a team, but more like a brotherhood. He turns the page to the next chapter, but leaves one final message to his teammates. “I would like to thank every one of my teammates who have helped push me in practice and games to get to where I am.  I would most importantly like to thank the one player who has been there with me from learning to skate at four years old, to winning a championship together. Doc (Tommy Dougherty-JRFlyers Captain) I’m going to miss you buddy.  We will always be brothers and that bond will never be broken.”

    Congratulations Sean on a successful junior hockey career. Thank you for all of your hard work and dedication to the JRFlyers. Best of luck as you move on to the next phase of your hockey journey. Thank you for being part of the JRFlyers family now and forever.

     

    By Joe Sindoni

    Staff Writer

    Play By Play Announcer

    • CHAMPIONS !

    • By Joe Sindoni 04/15/2017, 6:30pm EDT
    • JRFlyers Win the EHL Title in Dramatic Fashion
    • Read More
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    EHLJRFlyers EHL JR Flyers EHLJRFlyers

    2016-2017 Jr Flyers Commits

    CLICK PLAYER NAME FOR FULL ARTICLE

    TYLER WILLIAMS  - SUNY BROCKPORT 

    ADAM PAPAYOANOU  - SOUTHERN MAINE U.

    CHRIS BUTRYN - CASTLETON UNIVERSITY 

    JOSH HINDERLITER - TRINE UNIVERSITY 

    JACK O'NEIL - KINGS COLLEGE

    MATT MANNING - WORCESTER STATE U.

    TOMMY DOUGHERTY - NEUMANN UNIVERSITY

    CASEY KUBARA - NAZARETH COLLEGE