VJW Junior A Team Featured in USA Junior Hockey Magazine
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Since advancing to the EJHL quarterfinals for the second straight season, Andy Heinze and his VJW Junior A coaching staff has been hard at work putting together another stellar group of players for the 2012-2013 season.

The program's recent success has drawn much attention... most notably from the USA Junior Hockey Magazine which published the following season preview for the Warriors in its September 2012 issue.

Warriors Hope to Improve On Fine Last Season

Nearly six months after advancing to the EJHL quarterfinals for the second straight season and earning three post-season honors (the most of any league program), the Valley Junior Warriors are still flying high and packed with even more talent this time around.

"We are excited about the upcoming season and looking forward to getting started," said Andy Heinze, who last spring captured his third career EJHL Coach of Year honor. "We have made some strides forward over the past few years and having a strong group of returning players will certainly help us out of the gates."

Leading the charge and returning for their third year with the Warriors are forwards John Jackson (Bixby, OK) and Brett Mason (Rowley, MA) as well as defenseman Marcus Moles (Lake Placid, NY), who logged a combine 114 games last season. In total, Heinze has seven returning players. Included in that list are John Needham (Medford, MA), Albee Daley (Averill Park, NY), Nick Pichette (Massena, NY), Devin Smith (Andover, MA) and John Rogeri (Katy, TX).

"Our returning guys have more confidence in their own abilities and they understand the challenges of playing junior hockey," said Heinze. "They are also more physically developed which will make us faster and more consistent through our lines and better able to match up against the teams we will be competing against."

Those returning players will be complemented by an explosive incoming group that will no doubt be led by three standouts who have recently gained national attention.

In June, Brendan Collier (Charlestown, MA) was selected in the seventh round (189th overall) of the 2012 NHL Entry Draft by the Carolina Hurricanes. And just last month, Devin Tringale (Medford, MA) and Ryan Fitzgerald (North Reading, MA) were part of a select group of players who were selected to compete in the inaugural CCM/USA Hockey All-American Prospects Game on September 29 in Buffalo, NY.

Collier and Fitzgerald – who played together while leading Malden Catholic to two straight Super 8 titles – will continue on at Boston University and Boston College, respectively, in 2013, while Tringale has committed his talents to Harvard University.

Also looking to make an impact immediately for the Warriors will be defensemen Perry Holcombe (Cumming, GA) and Gus Harms (Pelham, NY) as well as forwards Nick Leonard (Methuen, MA), Chris Hamel (Roswell, GA) and Julian Fialkow (Newton, MA). Fialkow – much like Fitzgerald and Collier – has already committed to play at Colgate University next fall.

"We worked very hard to find character kids who have talent but who aren't done developing," explained Heinze, who works closely with his assistant coach Jeremy Tabb in year-long recruiting efforts. "These kids are ready to work hard and put forth a great effort for themselves, for the program and for the players in the locker room."

While those players are known talents in this region, Heinze will be welcoming two new netminders again this season in Marcus Born (Kumia, Sweden) and Brendan Leahy (Reading, MA). Last year, a question mark in net turned into a jackpot when Fabian Sivnert – whom Heinze saw only on video prior to the start of the season - finished as the EJHL Goaltender of the Year.

Heinze relied on his same sources in Sweden when he signed Born to battle for time in net with Leahy, who was part of the Boston Jr. Bruins team that won the 2011 USA Hockey Tier III Junior B National Championship.

"We know that Marcus is younger and we expect some growing pains but there is no question that he has talent," said Heinze. "He and Brendan will challenge each other and give us some strength and depth in a position that sets teams apart from each other in this league."

Another addition to the program this year comes in the form of Mike Boyle and his staff, who took over all strength and conditioning responsibilities for the Valley Junior Warriors. They have also set up a state-of-the-art training facility on the mezzanine level of the Haverhill Valley Forum, the home facility of the Warriors.

"This is a big reason why a lot of these players have jumped on board," said Heinze of Boyle, who - for more than 25 years - has worked with the Boston University hockey team and currently helps to train the United States Women's Olympic hockey team. "We now have everything in our building, which allows the players to fit in more training time between their college classes."

In addition to team practices, film work and off-ice training, the Warriors also have the opportunity to work one-on-one with Tabb and other members of the Warriors staff - many of whom are current or former NHL scouts - who have years of experience developing young players.

"We have more ice time available to us than probably any other program," said Heinze. "Players know that they will get the best and most comprehensive training when they come to the Warriors."

Heinze, a former Merrimack College standout who currently ranks 10th on Merrimack's all-time scoring list, is looking forward to putting all of the pieces together and seeing it culminate in something special during the 2012-13 season.

"All of the players have worked hard this past summer and are ready to go," said Heinze. "I have a lot of confidence in the group that we have. As a coach it is now about putting it all together and getting the most out of them."

VJW Junior A Players College League Awards & Announce Future Plans
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VJW 00 Elites Win NEHL 00 American Championship Title
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Season Ends for VJW Junior A Team in EJHL Semifinals
Weekend Sweep Sets Stage for EJHL Semifinals for VJW Junior A Team
VJW 00 Selects & 05 Elites Advance to Finals of HNE Playoffs
It's Here - EJHL Quarterfinals Set for This Weekend in Haverhill
VJW Junior A Team Cruises Into EJHL Quarterfinals... Again!
Just Announced - VJW Midget & Junior Tryouts Set for April
Former VJW Star Loren Barron Leads Top-Ranked Quinnipiac
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Former VJW Standouts Have Sochi Olympics on Their Minds
Former Player & Coach Marc Griffin to Join the VJW Coaching Staff
VJW Junior A Team Sweeps; Extends Winning Streak to 4 Games
Brendan Leahy & Jake Schechter Earn Player of the Week Honors
VJW Junior A Defenseman Jake Schechter Commits to Northeastern
Dave Sacco Takes On Double (Coaching) Duty for 2013-14 Season
VJW Seeking a Mite Minor (2006) Coach for 2013-14 Season
VJW 02 Selects Win Green Mountain Tournament In Exciting Shoot-Out
Fitzgerald Makes January Mid-Term Rankings for 2013 NHL Entry Draft
Defense & Goaltending Key for Junior A Team Heading into 2013
Mark Your Calendars Today for 2013 VJW Tournaments
VJW 03 Elites Compete in the 2012 Summit Series Challenge Cup
John Jackson & Ryan Fitzgerald Named EJHL Players of the Week
VJW Junior A Team Enjoys Weekend Sweep Over Portland
VJW 00 Selects Find Time to Give Back to Their Community
VJW 02 Selects Defeat Islanders to Win 2012 Turkey Tournament
Sam Kurker Scores Game Winner; Leads BU Over Top-Ranked UNH
VW Junior A Star John Jackson Proves He is Here to Stay
VJW & Long Island Gulls Come Together In a Time of Need
VJW Teams Shine at 2012 Warrior Thanksgiving Tournament
VJW '04 Selects Look to Bring Cheer to Troops This Holiday Season
Ryan Fitzgerald Scores Four Goals at 2012 World Junior A Challenge
VJW Junior A Team Continues Its EJHL Dominance
Fast Hockey to Live Stream at Warrior Thanksgiving Tournament
2012 Warrior Thanksgiving Tournament Comes to Haverhill
2012 Warrior Classic Kicks Off on Friday
Ryan Fitzgerald Named to USA Junior Select Team
VJW 05 Elite Player Receives Weekly NEHL Honor
VJW Junior Teams Continue to Win Big in League Play
Ryan Fitzgerald Stars in All-American Prospects Game
VJW Junior A Team Remains Undefeated in EJHL Play
VJW Junior A Team Off to Impressive & Fast Start
Brian Pinho Accepts Hockey Scholarship to Providence College
Sep 9, 12
VJW Junior A Team Featured in USA Junior Hockey Magazine
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VJW Teams Perform Well at 2012 Warrior National Showcase
Blackwell Shines at 2012 U.S. National Junior Evaluation Camp