A youth hockey league in Nassau County is looking for recruits to hit the ice. The New York Islanders High School Hockey League is in playoff mode right now, but the conference is already accepting players for the 2019-20 season.
“There are 800 kids because there are 20 or so clubs who recruit all of those kids,” Richard Rosa, vice president of the middle school division, said. “The league provides the infrastructure and facilities for those clubs to exist. The credit for 800 players really goes to the teams.”
The league has squads across Nassau County, including Levittown/Hicksville, Wantagh/Seaford/Plainedge, Syosset, Manhasset, Garden City, Massapequa, Plainview, Farmingdale and other areas. Some school districts are associated with the league, while individual students whose schools don’t work with them can sign up by themselves. For $400, a player can enter a pool to be placed on a team for next season.
Currently, the organization is home to more than 800 student-athletes, each of whom learn the ins and outs of ice hockey. There are middle school, junior varsity and varsity leagues.
“The people who are involved all played hockey, and we just want to give back so kids have the chance to play,” Thomas Carroll, coach of the Levittown/Hicksville team, said. “We want to try to teach them, and it’s been going on for a long time.”
The Islanders got involved with the league, which was originally called the High School Hockey League of Nassau County, this season. Discussions began more than a year ago and the team has been on board since the get-go.
With the help of the Islanders, Northwell Health Ice Arena in Eisenhower Park will host the New York State Varsity High School Tournament from March 1-3. The tournament will see the state’s top high school hockey teams face off against one another in hopes of being crowned champions.
“The benefit of that is we get to cross-promote with them,” Rosa said. “They’re going to start promoting our league on their website. More and more leading up to next season, we’re going to do more things with them jointly. They’re going to help with things along the way that we don’t even know we need yet.”
Contact coach Carroll at 917-682-4059 or via email at TDcusbhockey@aol.com to sign up for the Levittown Ice Falcons.