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House hockey or (Tier 3) is less commitment and cost than Travel Hockey, with a focus on fun and skills development in the game of hockey. It is for all skills levels from beginner to advanced. Players must have at least minimum skill and skating ability to participate. Participants may need to participate in a draft skate for the purpose of evenly creating teams but no one is turned away based on skill set.
Players are typically placed on teams based on birth year (see below for "playing up" policy). We offer teams from the 6U level (mini-mite) to 14U (Bantam). Lakeland teams are a part of the MAHA District 4.
Our programs follow the American Development Model or ADM. Our 6U and 8U teams play half ice games. These teams also participate in the I-275 league. The intent of the I-275 League is to give Mite and Mini-Mite age players an opportunity to play within their own age group and skill level in an environment that stresses fun, learning, sportsmanship, and team play with minimum emphasis on wins and losses. The League recognizes that some associations may have a limited number of teams and this is an opportunity for those players to engage in game play with minimal drive time. The I-275 League was established to enhance these objectives and give greater game variety.
Our 10U Squirts through 14U Bantams participate in the Little Caesars Amateur Hockey League The purpose of the LCAHL is to provide a positive and rewarding experience for amateur youth hockey players in the Metro Detroit area and surrounding regions. The LCAHL shall emphasize, among other areas, the following:
Mini Mites/ Mites
Our Mini Mite and Mites teams will follow USA Hockey's American Development Model (ADM) and play 1/2 Ice Games. Our teams will again be participating in the I-275 League this year. Typically skating 2 times a week.
Mini Mites- Wednesdays & Sundays (2023-24 Schedule)
Mites- Wednesdays & Sundays (2023-24 Schedule)
I-275 League Participants: Compuware, Novi, Plymouth, Canton, LC Farmington Hills, Livonia, & Orchard Lake.
Squirts, Pee Wee's, & Bantams
*With teams typically skating on Fridays & Sundays
Our Squirt though Bantam house teams participate in the Little Caesar's Amateur Hockey League (LCAHL), which require some travel for away games. These age levels skate 2 times per week, with an additional day for away games once league games begin.
Mini Mite ( Ages 5 & 6)
Mite (Ages 7 & 8)
Squirt ( Ages 9 & 10)
Pee Wee (Ages 11 & 12)
Bantam (Ages 13 & 14)
The House Hockey draft is one of the most misunderstood processes in all of youth hockey. The draft is only open to one representative from each team and Board Members, leading to complaints and allegations of stacked or rigged teams. The house hockey draft rules are dictated by MAHA regulations and each division's draft is attended by a MAHA D4 representative. Draft regulations include number of 1st vs. 2nd year players, out of district players, and goalie selections. The goal of the draft is to create as even teams as possible, across each division.
How does one team end up being better than the other? Pure luck. This includes which coach receives the 1st pick and reverse order in other rounds. While the evaluation skates give a glimpse into each player; some kids perform better in drills than game situations or vice versa. And while some kids are still on summer vacation, some kids improve quickly, while others take a little longer adapting to changes in the game and get back into hockey mode. Since most complaints arise around the midpoint of the season, it is recommended that families work with their coaching staff to help grow and strengthen as a team.
Coaches are not given players names or ratings until just before the draft. Certainly some coaches earn a slight advantage by knowing the kids, by making their own evaluation notes, and being able to know how to draft. Each coach comes to the draft with their own plan: some take top rated players each time, some select players/families they know, others seem to use a magic 8-ball or pick by name during the draft.
Prior to the draft, coaches are warned not to agree to any deals and to avoid additional protected player requests. They are also urged to report any pressure to comply.
In the end, the MAHA representative present at the draft, as well as the Lakeland Hockey Director, have the power to invalidate the draft if there appears to be any integrity issues. This could lead to coaches having to re-draft or teams being assigned based on ratings alone. The draft results are final and we are not allowed to make any changes.
Each year Lakeland Hockey receives numerous requests to be placed with a certain coach, avoid another coach, ride-share, best-friend, etc. Unfortunately, these requests are not allowed under MAHA regulations. Each coach is only permitted one protected player (which is usually their son/daughter). Families are allowed to make requests known to various coaches, but the final decision lies with the coach and is limited to the availability of those players.
PLEASE NOTE: Lakeland Hockey does not offer any promises or guarantees for players to be placed, or not placed, on any certain team. Refunds will not be considered for players who are not drafted on any specific team, with specific teammates, by any specific coach, or any other team request.
NON ROSTERED PLAYERS/COACHES ON THE ICE OR BENCH
The only people allowed on the ice during a practice or on the bench during a game are rostered players or coaches. Having others on the ice or the bench invalidates the USA Hockey insurance and puts the head coach at risk for disciplinary action and potential lawsuit should an un-rostered individual be injured. The USA Insurance coverage will not cover you or anyone on the ice, including an injured party. The rule applies to player siblings, coaches other children, friends, and even those rostered on other Lakeland teams. This is NOT optional, and coaches will be suspended immediately pending a hearing if it occurs. This is not a LHA rule, but a USA Hockey / MAHA rule and it will be strictly enforced.
All coaches on the ice are required to wear a helmet. Guest 'coaches’ on the ice must also wear helmets. It is the head coaches responsibility to make sure this policy is followed. If your team has someone come to your practice to work with your team and they are on the ice, they must have a helmet. NO EXCEPTIONS. These coaches must also be USA Hockey registered. Again, failure to follow this policy puts the head coach at risk for disciplinary action. Both of these are USA Hockey rules and are not negotiable.