Avon-Brockton-Holbrook-Randolph-Stoughton, MA

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Southeast Cyclones(SEC) Youth Hockey Tryout Process/Policy


Tryouts for all travel teams (Mite-Midgets) typically begin in April. The Board of Directors is responsible for establishing the rules and formats associated with the tryout sessions. Note that to be eligible for tryouts, a player must be registered in advance online at secycloneshockey.org and must be in good financial standing with the organization.
The purpose of tryouts is to evaluate a player's skating ability and hockey skills in order to place him or her within a team that will provide the best environment for improving their self-confidence and enjoyment of the sport of ice hockey.
Players or families that have past due tuition balances from prior seasons will not be allowed to try out until outstanding balances have been paid in full or satisfactory payment arrangements have been made with the association's Treasurer and President.
A Board-approved evaluation group using a scoring system will evaluate skating ability, hockey skills, and game awareness at each level during scheduled tryout sessions. All levels will include a scrimmage component as part of the evaluation process.
Additional input to a player's respective hockey abilities and understanding of team concepts will be provided by the previous year's coach(es). That input will be solicited through a standardized player evaluation form that is provided to coaches prior to tryout. The evaluations are confidential. At no time will the evaluations be shared or witnessed with any non-approved Board member including parents or players.
When a player's inability to attend the tryouts as a result of a family-related conflict and/or illness or injury, a player may request in writing that they be evaluated at a later date. This is only in extreme cases, and no evaluation will be conducted unless the request is provided in writing to the President and Registrar prior to the commencement of the tryout process. Any decision on whether such an evaluation will be conducted will be made by the Executive Board within 10 business days of the written request.

Player Tryout Specifics

Tryouts provide evaluation teams the opportunity to observe players in 2 structured sessions focusing on skills and scrimmaging. The SEC Board with coaches input will develop the overall tryout format for each particular level. All levels will have a skill session and a scrimmage session.

Player tryout, like player development, is a process. Effective management of the process will make a young player’s experience in hockey a more positive one.

Having a solid player evaluation process in place can help make the process much easier. Not only will it give the SEC a reference point it will also give a starting point to determine where the players are skill wise, thus beginning the process of utilizing the Hockey program, and coaches on importance of developing specific skills.


Each evaluator, working individually, will score every player at that level on their performance during the skills and scrimmage sessions. A player’s total score will be based upon the summation of their respective skill and scrimmage scores. An evaluator will score with a respective number from the scoring chart below in respect to either the skill or scrimmage session.

5= shows mastery of all criteria.

4= various levels of proficiency.

3= ability to execute skills adequately.

2= needs work on skills at various stages.

1= inability to execute skills


Objective of Player Tryouts

To provide a fair and impartial assessment of a players total hockey skills during skating and scrimmage sessions.

To ensure that players have a reasonable opportunity of being selected to a team appropriate to their skill levels as determined during on-ice evaluations of the current year.

To provide coaches with knowledge of player’s abilities for the team for which they are selected. Giving them the opportunity and flexibility to build their team with the right philosophy and skill sessions to create the best players possible for that level of play.

To provide uniformity and consistency in the evaluation process such that a player and parent expectations are consistent from year to year as players move through the various levels of the SEC hockey program.

To form teams to maintain balanced and competitive play where the athletes can develop their skills, participate in the team experience and have fun playing the game of hockey.

To provide feedback in order to develop players on a continuing basis throughout their youth hockey career.

There are 3 key groups involved in the tryout process:

On-ice coaches to take players through the sessions

Off-ice evaluators who will be responsible to evaluate every player on the ice during the time allotted.

On/Off–ice administrators who will be responsible for tracking evaluations, contacting parents and players and scheduling sessions.

Skills overview for tryouts

Skating:  Acceleration, speed, mobility, agility, balance, stride, crossovers, pivots, acceleration out of turns, quick feet, controlled skating, and change of pace.

Passing: Passing, receiving, passing choices, control, touch passing, accuracy.

Puck control: Head is up, good hands, protection, creativity in small spaces, adjustments in traffic.

Shooting: Power, accuracy, quick release, can shoot in motion, goal scorer, rebound control, variety of shots.

Positional Play: Ability to see the play developing both offensively and defensively, support, judgement, anticipation, understands systems, disciplined.

Upon the completion of tryouts the evaluations are collected and organized to match the number of the participant to his/her name. The SEC Board of Directors determines the number of teams that will compete in the following season. Once the number of teams is decided, the players are placed according to score on the appropriate team. After the teams have been finalized, the rosters are posted to each team on the SEC web site.


The SEC Board recognizes that roster placement can cause anxiety and uncertainty among players and parents. The following is intended to minimize anxiety by providing transparency and clarifying the process.

The Roster Placement Process

The roster placement process consists of five steps.

  1. Coaches season ratings
  2. On-ice evaluations at tryouts
  3. Current season team level
  4. Coaches roster review
  5. Board team placement

The first three items provide numerical rating data used for initial stacked ranking. The last two are qualitative adjustments to make sure the math makes sense.

Roster Placement Principles

  • Every player trying out will be evaluated and considered for placement on the highest team, regardless of prior season team placement or age.
  • If two players are being considered for the last spot on the same team and both have been evaluated and determined to be of equal skill, the second year player will be placed ahead of the younger player.
  • Due to shifting numbers of players in a given age group and the talent level of the incoming, younger age group, a player may remain stationary or in some instances drop down

Placement Requests

Specific team assignment requests are generally not permitted and should only be made in cases of extreme hardship. All such requests must be submitted in writing to the Board of Directors detailing the need for the placement and will be considered only if the request is for participation on a lower level team within the player's age bracket. Placements will not be made if it would significantly impact the makeup and skill level of a lower level team. 

A Note to Parents

  • Help your child deal constructively with the evaluation and placement process. Your encouragement to play hard and have fun will do more to promote success in hockey and beyond than moving up one team level.
  • Understand that the Roster Placement Process is subjective. Each evaluator values hockey attributes differently. Those involved in the placement process must make difficult decisions at times. The Board has made every effort to create a fair process that relies on volunteers doing their best.
  • Rosters are structured such that there is some room for upward mobility at the beginning of each season. Each team most often needs to add one or two skaters, and there is a process for calling up the best players from the team below. Encourage your player to commit to being the best they can be when that opportunity presents.
  • SEC Youth Hockey is a town hockey program comprised of volunteers. We prioritize players having fun, wanting to return next season, and improving hockey skills in that order, and that is independent of team placement level.
  • If you have a question about where your child was placed, please contact the SEC President.

Final Note

The goal of the SEC Tryout process is to fairly evaluate players, and place them on the best team that matches their skill level, and ability in the fairest way possible, using many ‘checks and balances’. SEC recognizes that there is no perfect process, and that there will always be players and parents who will disagree with the decisions. This will always exist in the case of a selective tiered (1, 2, 3…) system. We believe that our process is reasonable and fair, providing a player the opportunity to play on a team that is matched to that player’s overall ability.


Player Evaulation Sheet