Development Stream FAQ's (Whitby Girls Hockey Association)

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WGHA Development Stream Program FAQs

What is DS?

Development Stream (DS) is a subset of House League intended to further develop those House League players looking to bridge the gap between House League and Competitive Hockey (in skill or availability). The House League Development Stream Program (DS) began in 2011 as a pilot project in response to requests from members of the OWHA to find a solution to bridge the gap between house league and competitive (rep) play. This season, we will have teams for all divisions U11 - U18.

Who can play?

It is important to note that the DS program supplements the house league program meaning that all DS players must be registered in house league and attend house league games and practices regularly. This may result in players having two games/practices on the same day. DS teams will not schedule games or practices that conflict with the house league schedule without consent from the Executive. All House League players may tryout and there are no residency restrictions.

How can players try out?

As a development program, every house league player is eligible to attend a tryout. Tryouts are conducted and from there, cuts are made such that teams will have a maximum of 17 rostered players (2 goalies, 15 skaters). There are spots for alternates to practice with the team and play when rostered players are absent. 

How will teams be selected?

Each team will consist of a maximum of 15 skaters and 2 goalies with up to 8 named alternates that may be added throughout the season. In order to play on a DS team, the player must attend all tryouts for her age group or receive an exemption in advance from the DS coach of that division and approved by the HL executive (2ndVP or HL Director). DS teams are intended as a development program for House League players to improve their game and as such the team selection may reflect this intention at the discretion of the DS coach and tryout evaluators for that division.

Why was my daughter cut at the tryouts?

Players at tryouts are evaluated and compared to the other players at the tryout. Background information on a player may be taken into consideration such as their performance during Wolfpack ice, past performance, and the DS team’s pre-tryout evaluation skate. Other factors such as the purpose of the program (development) may also be factors being considered. Please ask the coach as to why your daughter was cut and you may express your concern to the 2nd VP of HL and the Executive Member for Player and Coach Development. If there are less than 15 players and 2 goalies at the tryout, the executive along with the coach will make a decision with respect to the team.

How many games and practices will there be?

The OWHA has stipulated that DS teams can play a maximum of 8 exhibition games against other DS teams and enter a maximum of 3 DS tournaments and games/tournaments are to be scheduled without conflicts to House League games. The number of practices will be determined by the coach in consultation with the team and parents to match desired commitment and budget levels after taking consideration the predetermined allocated ice from the WGHA to the DS teams.

How much travel will be involved?

This will depend on what other associations will be icing DS teams and the number of games and tournaments that a DS team choses. We anticipate that associations such as Kingston, Barrie, Leaside, Markham, Clarington, Aurora, Mississauga, Durham West, Oakville and Etobicoke will ice teams. As such, travel should be within a 60 minute distance other than any “away” tournaments that teams choose to enter (there are many local DS tournaments without the need for hotel accommodation).

How much will it cost?

The largest expenditure for hockey teams is the cost of ice. In addition to ice costs, there other expenses such as jerseys, tournament entry fees, referees, etc. that will come into play. Each coach will prepare a team budget that will be determined based on team costs and size. As a rough estimate, the cost per player is expected to not be more than $1000 (that is an upper limit estimate) assuming a team of 17 players.

What is the difference between an Evaluation Skate and a Tryout?

The evaluation skate is a pre-tryout session where players will get a sense of what a tryout is like without the pressure of going through an actual tryout. Consider it much like a dry run or a practice tryout. Players cannot be cut from an evaluation skate and attending an evaluation skate does not represent an obligation or intention to attend a DS team’s tryouts. On request from parents before the evaluation skate to the DS coach running this session, an evaluation from the coach will be provided after the session – observed strengths and areas for improvement. You must request this before the session in order to receive it.
Where are the schedules for DS teams posted?

Each DS team will communicate the schedule once it is known. Because other associations cannot hold DS tryouts until November 1st, it is difficult to book games with other associations in the event that there is a lack of player interest and teams are not formed. Once a DS team holds its tryouts and the team is approved by the WGHA Executive, the schedule is formed fairly quickly as games are arranged and tournaments booked.

DS Tryout Dates, Times and Locations will be posted on the website.

Questions or Concerns not addressed above?

Please discuss with your division’s DS coach or contact a Director for House League at [email protected]  
OR the Junior House League Director at [email protected]


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Printed from on Tuesday, January 26, 2021 at 5:27 PM