The Walpole Express is dedicated to developing players of all skill levels from Mites to Juniors through a safe and fun environment. The Express Model is based upon three integral components; access to practice ice, professional coaching, and competitive games. Each Express Youth Team receives two practices, one skills session, and a weekly game(s) in order to provide the optimal balance of learning and playing opportunities. The Express Model will allow young players to acquire and assimilate the skills needed to focus on the long-term development of each athlete according to USA Hockey’s Development Model.
Where do the teams play?
New for 2017, our Premier teams have been accepted to participate in the E9/BHL! The E9/BHL is considered one of the top leagues in New England and we are proud to be joining the league. We will also continue to host Elite & Select teams within the Premier Hockey League of New England (PHL-formerly MPDHL). We are allowed to place multiple teams at each level and therefore will make as many competitive teams as possible. The three levels of play provide opportunities for various skill levels to compete at the proper level of play.
What is offered at the Mite Level?
The Walpole Express will host at least one Premier travel team, as well as an in-house Mite League. The Express Mite League will consist of 4-6 teams that play a weekly half ice game. Teams will play 4v4 on our Olympic sheet. The half ice game format allows for players to get more touches on the puck and most importantly always be involved in the play.
What if my child is not yet ready for a Mite team?
We will continue to offer our popular Mite Development League, as well as our Learn To Play Hockey (Little Engines) league. We also offer a Learn To Skate programs. For more information about Learn To Skate, Little Engines, or Mite Development League, click here.
My player skates for their high school team. What programs are available to them?
We offer both split season travel (U18 & U16) and full season options (U16) for High School aged players. For more information, and to register for those tryouts, click here.
Who are the Express Coaches?
All Express coaches are paid professional coaches who are trained accordingly. Each coach must complete 15 hours of training with owner Rob Barletta and Director Taylor Larsen prior to coaching with the Express. There are also guidelines that each coach must follow through out the season to fully develop each player on their team. Coaches are monitored through out the season on a weekly basis. To see coach bios, click here.
Who runs the weekly skill sessions?
For the 2017-18 season, our dryland program will undergo some upgrades. We will debut a new dryland training center within Rodman Arena, staffed by off-ice trainers. These trainers will put players through drills to improve their agility, balance, coordination, and strength to help supplement their on ice training.
Who runs the weekly skill sessions?
Rob Barletta's hockey school will be running the skill sessions for all players. Each week our coaches will work to sharpen the individual's talents and skills. All drills are done at full speed with the coaches pushing each player to their full potential. Areas to be covered are forward and backward skating, shooting, pivoting, crossovers, stops, starts and fundamentals. You can check out RB Hockey’s website at www.rbhockey.com.
Do goalies receive specialized training?
Yes. Goalies are a unique position in the game that require special training. Express goalies get a weekly skill session with our goaltending coach. You can check out the website at www.ngdgoalies.com.
What does the tuition include?
Youth Teams: 2 weekly practices, 1 weekly skills, off-ice training, 1-2 games per week (30 games minimum)
Midget Teams: 2 weekly practices, 1 weekly skills, and an average of 1 game per week
Are there any additional fees?
Full Season Express teams playing within the E9/BHL and PHL (Mite-Bantam) will receive socks and a practice jersey. All players must purchase Home/Away Jerseys, Pant Shell, Team Bag, Team Travel Suit, Black Helmet, and Black Gloves separately. After the teams are chosen, we will have a sizing night. Half Season teams will only be required to purchase jerseys.
If you have pant shells, bags, travel suits, black helmet/gloves from the previous season then they will not be required to purchase additional equipment.
Do players need mouthguards (including goalies)?
Mouthguards are necessary. A player without one will be asked to leave the ice until they get one.
Can my player bring their own water bottle to the bench?
Players are permitted to bring their own water bottles to the bench. The Express provide clean water bottles, however we would never stop a player from bringing their own. Please note that the player is responsible for their own water bottle.
Will players be receiving helmet stickers?
We recommend that players purchase black helmets and require that all players wear Walpole Express decals on their helmets to represent our team in the league.
Players in the Midget levels will not be required to wear decals as we recognize that many players participate on their high school teams.
Will team and individual pictures be taken?
Team and Individual photos will be taken around October/November. Everyone will be notified with the details as soon as it becomes available.
Photos will be taken by Flash Powder Photo.
If interested in learning more about the program, don't hesitate to contact us.