FYHA coaches a positive mix of knowledge, patience, attitude
As the coaching coordinator for the Flagstaff Youth Hockey Association, Travis Johanson has an enjoyable role when it comes to the Northstars coaches.
Johanson said it’s a position that takes a lot of time but is well worth it for the good of the FYHA players.
“A lot of our coaches have ties to FYHA in that they played here once upon a time,” said Johanson. “You look at Reuben Gibbs (16U coach) and Matt Gibbs (12U), I had those guys as coaches when I played for FYHA. This year, those two tag team the 16U and 12U teams and do a tremendous job there. They’ve been with the program a long time and have always done a great job teaching these kids and developing their games.”
Glen Austin coaches the FYHA Jr. Jacks’ 18U tournament team this season and is another longtime FYHA coach.
“Glen grew up playing for FYHA and now, he has a kid on the 18U team,” said Johanson. “It’s kind of crazy to think how time flies, you know?”
Brian Levin-Stankevich (12U), Ryan Haar (10U), Chris Whitney (6U), Mathew Sabicer (10U, 12U, 14U) and Kris Walsh (8U) also coach in the FYHA program.
“Ryan and Chris, like the rest, including our wonderful assistant coaches, just do a spectacular job,” said Johanson. “For these club teams, they need to make the most of their time, and all of them do just that. I really appreciate the time and effort everyone puts in here.
“We may not be as well known as some of the associations down in the Valley, and there is nothing wrong with that, but we are continuing to grow and build a great hockey community up here in Flagstaff and it all starts with our coaches.”
— Matt Mackinder
(Dec. 20, 2018)