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Youth Hockey

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NIHL Premier Elite Select Division

The Northern Illinois Hockey League is excited to announce the new Premier Select Level of play, which will launch during the 2021 – 2022 season.

The Admirals are excited to put our best teams forward to a spot in this new NIHL division.  Teams competing for a spot will be by birth year.  Players can play up a level, but never down.   

Qualifying for the Premier Select Level will be based, solely, on a team’s on-ice performance during seeding round play or the teams’ previous year’s performance. 

This format will assure that only the strongest Tier II teams in Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin and Iowa, playing in NIHL, will ascend to the highest level of play in the Midwest. 

At the end of the season the new Premier Select Level’s divisions will join all the other NIHL divisions in our prestigious and well respected NIHL Blackhawks Tournament.

Northern Illinois Hockey League

Elite AA-A level travel (Squirt-Midget & Girls)

Players will participate in a tryout process.  Player selection will occur at this time.  Our Hockey director and head coaches evaluate players based on the following criteria: skating, puck control, physical ability, shot strength, play making ability, sense of the game, work ethic and coach-ability.  Each coach may weigh these differently based on coaching philosophy and/or team needs.  Players are given a rating by all evaluators.  The highest rated players are selected for the first team, then the second team, etc.  In the NIHL league, player positions and ice times will vary and are at the discretion of the coaching staff.  NIHL is a competitive travel league.  The season can have up to 40 games, tournaments and might require out of state travel.     

Chicago United Hockey League

8U Mite (CUHL Junior Admirals)

The Admirals will have CUHL league teams at the 8U Mite level.  Players will participate in an evaluation during which the head coaches will evaluate players based on the following criteria: skating, puck control, physical ability, shot strength, play making ability, work ethic and coach-ability.  Each coach may weigh these differently based on coaching philosophy and/or team needs.  Players are given a ranking by all evaluators.  The highest rated player are selected for the first team, then the second, etc.

CUHL is a mite only league governed by the AAU (Amateur Athletic Union) and is not affiliated with USA hockey.  CUHL typically has 90+ teams in four divisions, each with several tiers, ensuring parity and appropriate competition.  Depending on team placement, the season can have up to 24 games plus playoffs, and may require out of state travel.  The CUHL season runs September – February.

NorthWest Hockey League

B-level (Squirt-Midget)

Players will participate in an evaluation during which the hockey directors and head coaches will evaluate players based on the following criteria: skating, puck control, physical ability, shot strength, play making ability, work ethic and coach-ability.  Coaches may weigh these differently based on their coaching philosophy.  After the last session of evaluations, players will be placed on a team. Players are assigned a ranking, and balanced teams are formed.  In NWHL league, players are given balanced and equal ice time.  Players registered for B-level NWHL do not need to attend to A-level tryouts unless they are interested in playing on a NIHL Team.