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Tryouts

Registration closes 12/3/2020 at 3PM.

Tryout registration

If you want to be considered for a GSE travel team and you have read all the info below, click on this registration link:

Signings happen in:

0
Days

Larry Cahn

North Manager contact

Chris Hathaway

South Manager contact

Do you want to be considered for a GSE team?

If so, you landed on the right page.  This registration is for serious players interested in trying out for GSE.  Please read all the information below, because this season does not resemble any of our prior seasons.

For returning players, you can skip to "COVID-19 HAS CHANGED EVERYTHING" below.

See our Eagle News segment that covers tryouts and the up-coming season.

General Info on GSE

The Golden State Elite (GSE) hockey program is the top performing tier program in California and we are committed to providing an environment for you to prepare for your most important years ahead. This year we were ranked in the Top 20 AA clubs in the country by Culturama.

Our focus is on you, your development and providing you every opportunity to play this game at the next level. We only attract players who are dedicated to achieving excellence and those players who strive for success. We look forward to helping our players reach their goals.

In our brief history, we have had nationally ranked teams, sent multiple teams to state playoffs, took 5 state titles, and sent 4 teams to Nationals.

In order to accommodate the geographically diverse player population, GSE is split along geographic boundaries: North and South.  North teams will have practices between mainly in Vacaville and sometimes San Francisco.  South teams practice mainly in Cupertino and sometimes in San Francisco .  Weekend practices for all teams may differ.

GSE is a joint venture between Cupertino Cougars, Vacaville Jets, and San Francisco Sabercats.  For more information about us, click on the About menu.

Why tryout for GSE?

We are ranked in the Top 20 clubs in the nation according to Culturama.  Last season, ALL of our 7 teams went to playoffs, 3 teams went to the finals, our teams averaged in the top 6% in the national rankings, and we sent 18 players to CAHA Selects.
 
Top players
The top players throughout Northern California play for us based on our historical performance and the reputation of our coaches.  See our Alumni page for an ever-growing list of players that have advanced.
 

Coaches
Our coaches are the secret sauce to what makes our program great.  See the bios below and ask around.  You will find that we have the best coaches.

Fixed practice schedule
Teams will have the same practice slots through out the season, so families can plan around practices in advance.  This does not apply to any bonus ice a team may receive.

Nationally Ranked
Our  teams are typically highly ranked nationally (according to MyHockeyRankings.com).  Last season, our teams average ranking was in the top 6% in the nation.

Goalies
We pay special attention to our goalies.  Last season, our average goals allowed per game is a NORCAL low of 2.49.  How do we achieve this?  We have dedicated full-time goalie training by professional goalie coaches that do nothing but goalie training.  Goalies receive training during their team practices by our dedicated goalie coaches.

Scouts
A lot of people talk about getting their player "seen" by scouts.  We have a scout in our program.  Mario Morrissette is a scout for the Walpole Express Junior A team (EHL).

In addition, we are frequently contacted by outside scouts.

COVID-19 has changed everything

Be prepared for an entirely different season!  It goes without saying that we are in a pandemic and that causes all sorts of health, safety, and logistical concerns.  Tryouts have already been pushed out by CAHA and NORCAL several times.  On top of that, the State and counties have their own restrictions on rink operations.  No county is the same.

In-person tryouts will not be possible this year.  On 12/4/2020, our coaches will select players for their teams from this registration.  This is called digital signing. Coaches will base their decisions on their knowledge of players from one-on-one experience in clinics, coaching players on prior teams, scouting players within NORCAL, and gathering information from other coaches.

For those of you that want to get in front of our coaches before the digital signing date, there are some pre-tryout clinics that will be made available (space permitting) to players that have registered here.  Registered players will be contacted about these clinics, so sign up early. Registered players will be offered slots in the pre-tryout clinics before being offered to the general public. These clinics will start filling on 11/15/2020, so be sure to register here before then.

Obviously, this situation is not what we want and it is not the type of situation that your player deserves. We have spent a lot of time and effort analyzing every option.  This isn't perfect, but it is the best and safest solution that we can offer given the current environment.

If you are serious about being on a  GSE team, you must fill out this registration to be considered.  Our coaches will select players from this registration for their teams. Be ready to commit the moment you are offered a position on a team.

There is no charge for this registration.  Please be patient and, with your cooperation, we will get through this thing.  

Tryout fee

This registration is online and the fee is:  NONE
 
See the registration buttons at the top or bottom of this page.

Teams

This year we will be forming the following teams:

12U AA, birth years 2008 & 2009:

South (Cupertino) coached by Kevin Nathan
North (Vacaville) coached by Tony Manino
 
14U AA, birth years 2006 & 2007:
 
South (Cupertino) coached by Gregg Rodriguez
North x 2 (Vacaville) (Note: TWO teams will be formed) both teams coached by Larry Cahn
 
As you can see, we will have three 14U AA teams - one in the South and two in the North.  Normally CAHA rules do not allow more than 2 teams, however we were granted a variance from CAHA.  Thank you, CAHA!
 
16U AA, birth years 2004 & 2005:
 
Combined North and South coached by Mario Morrissette
 

Our 16U AA will combine the best players from the North and South onto one team.  Players will practice during the week at the rink most convenient to them (VV, CU, or SF).  On weekends players will come together for a team practice.

18U AA:
 
At the 18U level, we just do not have enough players in our system to field a team, sorry.

Coaches

Gregg Rodriguez

Gregg's Elite Prospect link. Gregg has been part of GSE since its inception and he has coached GSE’ Bantam and Peewee teams. Gregg grew up in Sunnyvale where he played youth hockey for the Cougars, Jr. Sharks, and Blackhawks. He went on to play Junior B for the Syracuse Stars, two years of Junior A for the Capital District Selects in the Eastern Junior Hockey League, and capped his hockey career by receiving a scholarship to Sacred Heart (Division 1) University in the Atlantic Hockey Association.

Mario Morrissette

Mario has coached GSE’ teams from Peewee to Midget, some of his teams have ranked in the top 6 in the nation. With GSE, he has 2 state titles and made one trip to Nationals. Mario is a scout for the Walpole Express Jr. A team (EHL) and current Norcal coach who has achieved Midget Tier I Championship in the Southwest Youth Hockey League, 16AA State Finalist, 4 CAHA State Championships and 5 Norcal Championships.

Larry Cahn

In addition to being a GSE founder, Larry has coached GSE’ Peewee, Bantam, and Midget 16 teams. He is a USA Hockey Level 5 coach and in 2013, Larry was named Pacific District Coach of the Year. Larry is former Director of Coaches for both Norcal and SCAHA as well as a staff member for the USA Hockey National Development Program. Larry is a former scout for the WHL's Medicine Hat.

Mike O'Maley (goalie coach)

Michael O’Maley played for Gilmore Academy 18AAA then moved on to Junior Hockey for New Jersey Hitmen where he finished his playing days. O’Maley has coached in Sacramento and Vacaville over the past 4 years.

Tony Manino III

Tony is product of northern California having played for the Cupertino Cougars. He is a USA Hockey Level 5 coach and has been coaching in NORCAL for 8 years. He has coached everything between Mites to Midgets. The last 4 seasons, Tony has been an assistant coach on GSE teams for Larry Cahn and has been the head coach of the Vacaville Jets 18U A teams. In his coaching career, he has won 4 NORCAL Championships and a State title.

Kevin Nathan

He started his hockey career at Vallco playing for the Cougars. In 2009 he started coaching teams for the Cougars and in 2015 he, also, coached for GSE. With a background in Kinesiology and over a decade of experience, Kevin is the Strength & Conditioning coach for the Cougars and GSE. Kevin started his own company, called Kevin Nathan Sports Performance.

Program details

Since the season starts so late, we are extending the season beyond playoffs and Nationals.  We are in the process of making arrangements to play X games through early to mid-May.

Due to the late start, there will be no CAHA weekends.  All league games will be played locally within NORCAL.  The top 2 teams from NORCAL will play in CAHA's State championship.  USA Hockey does have a Nationals tournament for 14U and 16U.  In addition, we plan to send our teams to highly competitive tournaments.  Per USA Hockey ADM, a Nationals tournament is not offered to 12U.

Since, there are no CAHA weekends and the NORCAL schedule has not been announced, we are moving game fees into the team fees (not listed here) along with tournament fees and coach expenses.

Item Description
Practices

Beginning in December through early May, players will have 2 practices per week. A third practice on the weekend will be conducted when not playing games, playing at tournaments, or on holiday. No practices will be conducted on holidays or while the team is at or traveling to a tournament. Drylands and chalk talks may be included with practices.

Goalie training

Goalies will be trained by professional goalie coaches.

Coach expenses

Coaches' USA Hockey registration, training, etc and annual stipend.

Internet

Includes team pages, season fee payment processing, mobile app, internal Facebook site, etc.

regular season dues

To be clear, these costs do not include games.    In addition to the dues below, you will pay team fees to cover games, tournaments, and coach expenses.

Level Fees
AA (December-May) $3,000

If your player makes a team, be prepared to pay a $500 deposit immediately.

Everyone will be billed monthly for five months, starting in January, $500/month.  The last payment will be in May.  

Note: These fees DO NOT include games, tournament, playoffs, etc.  Those additional costs will be collected by the team manager, as-needed.

FAQ

Q: What is the difference between North and South? Depending on the numbers and strength we see at tryouts, we may divide an age group into north and south teams.  North teams will be based out of San Francisco and Vacaville. South teams will be based out of Vallco and San Francisco.  Weekend practices may be conducted at any GSE rink.

Q: Can I specify my preference for North or South even though I don't live near my preferred region? Yes.

Q: Do I have to play for one of the three GSE clubs to tryout? NO.

 

Questions?

Contact:

William Stone

Co-Founder

Registration link

Ready to be evaluated?  By filling out this free registration, you are seriously interested and want to be considered for a GSE team.  Good luck!  We hope to see you wearing our sweater this season!

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