On Ice Officials-Referees

2019-20 Team Photos

We also would like to thank the team sponsors for their support throughout the season.

On Ice Officiating Clinic – Level 1, 2, 3

This years Officiating Clinic will take place at the Best Western Barclay Hotel on Friday September 27, 2019 from 5:30 pm to 10:00 pm.


If you are a NEW Level 1 official:

  • you are required to complete the Hockey University ‘Officiating 1/2′ modules prior to attending the face to face clinic, mentioned above.

  • If you have not registered for this course you can do so at https://bchockey.net/Clinics/Clinics.aspx or https://ehockey.hockeycanada.ca/ehockey/ClinicDetail.aspx?cid=124816

  • Please make sure that your email address is correct upon registration as your link to the Hockey University modules will be in an email response to that specific address.

  • Hockey University (online) will take approximately three (3) hours to complete. They will prepare you for the face to face clinic (Sep. 27th at Barclay Hotel) which takes approximately four (4) hours to complete.

  • Once the Hockey University ‘Officiating 1/2’ course is completed (including the final survey) you will be free to register for the HCOP level 1 clinic.

If you are a returning official:

  • you may proceed with your HCOP clinic registration.

Register online for the HCOP clinic:  https://www.bchockey.net/Content.aspx?id=295

If you have any questions, please contact:

Francois Warren, AVMHA Referee-in-Chief

ph: 250-720-5407  email:  francoiswarren@shaw.ca

Local Awards from VIAHA AGM

ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS:  June 4, 2019 – Local Sports

Alberni hockey official honoured for dedication to his sport

Isaac McDonald received the VIAHA Most Deserving Official Award (in photo).

Blake Moore received the 2019 Summer Officiating School Scholarship.


IMPORTANT – News from the 2019 VIAHA AGM

2019 Awards Banquet

April 5, 2019 – AVMHA Awards Banquet was held at Glenwood Centre to a full house.  Thank you to Granny’s Chicken & Quality Foods for providing the dinner (Pizza, chicken, salads, vegetable trays).
Here are the highlights:

Team Player Awards went to:


Atom Team 1 – Tigers Coach:  Mike Foster

  • Most Dedicated Player – Linden Higgins
  • Most Sportsmanlike Player – Dean Holcombe
  • Most Improved Player – Jean Smit

Atom Team 2 – Knights Coaches:  Brad Golbeck, Katie Isherwood

  • Most Dedicated Player – Alex Fred
  • Most Sportsmanlike Player – Aiden Wilson
  • Most Improved Player – Sierra Scott

Atom Team 3 – Vicious Grapes Coaches:  Kerri Poirier, Jasmine Meikle

  • Most Dedicated Player – Malcolm Shillito
  • Most Sportsmanlike Player – Gavin Saran
  • Most Improved Player – Lane Dumont

Atom Development Coaches Shai Porter, Mike Doucette, Dan Cheetham, Kord Kozocari.

  • Most Dedicated Player – Deacon Massop
  • Most Sportsmanlike Player – Mackenzie Alarie
  • Most Improved Player – Bennett Moes

Peewee Team 1 – Coaches:  Kyle Penner, Keith Austin, Tyler Brown, Ryan Sexton

  • Most Dedicated Player – Kaleena Penner
  • Most Sportsmanlike Player – Justin Barrowcliff
  • Most Improved Player – Tony Nickel

Peewee Team 2 – Coaches:  Rob Ivezich, Chris McCollister, Kyle Alarie

  • Most Dedicated Player – Hunter Alarie
  • Most Sportsmanlike Player – Kaitlyn Saunders
  • Most Improved Player – Josh Sutherland

Peewee Tier 3 – Coaches:  Mike Souchuck, Shawn Austin, Trevor Ruel

  • Most Dedicated Player – Jace Fedirchuk
  • Most Sportsmanlike Player – Brynn Austin
  • Most Improved Player – Alex McKenzie

Bantam Team 1 – Coaches:  Bob King, Curtis Buxton, Mike Cole

  • Most Dedicated Player – Ryshard Pouliot
  • Most Sportsmanlike Player – Jimmy Cook
  • Most Improved Player – River O’Neil-Johns

Bantam Team 2 – Coaches:  Steve Tramer, Kelly Brossoit, Trevor Ruel, Mike Bray.

  • Most Dedicated Player – Ryann Tramer
  • Most Sportsmanlike Player – Wiley Olson
  • Most Improved Player – Aiden Poirier-Barnes

Bantam Tier 3 – Coaches:  Wade Nicklin, Shawn Banman, Matt Netzer.

  • Most Dedicated Player – Jacob Hebert
  • Most Sportsmanlike Player – Blake Moore
  • Most Improved Player – Hudson Swann

Midget Team 1 – Coaches:  Brent Rose, Scott Rushton, Dave Shanks.

  • Most Dedicated Player – Mason Maddison
  • Most Sportsmanlike Player – Zakeysha Corey
  • Most Improved Player – Austin Kuc

Midget Team 2 – Underdogs – Coaches:  Ryan Dwolinsky, Kord Kozocari

  • Most Dedicated Player – Jordan Villafane
  • Most Sportsmanlike Player – Brad Kozocari
  • Most Improved Player – Cody Sutherland

Midget Tier 3 – Coaches:  Shawn Elder, Kevin Erickson, Brock Elder

  • Most Dedicated Player – John Pley
  • Most Sportsmanlike Player – Noah Braiden
  • Most Improved Player – Carson Steel

Individual Awards presented:

Jessica States Memorial Award

  • Brynn Austin

Rookie Referee of the Year

  • Ethan Sutherland

Top Referee of the Year

  • Riley Swanson

Coach of the Year

  • Ryan Dwolinsky

Volunteer of the Year (Marilyn Gibson Trophy)

  • Sarah Bielert

Above & Beyond:

  • Karen Kozocari

“All Female Officiating Crew” AV News


From left to right: Avery Cole, Kylie Scott and Nicole Gagnon. ELENA RARDON PHOTO

Alberni Valley hockey tournament features all-female officiating crew

The three officials went through Alberni Valley Minor Hockey program

The most recent Bryan Mason Memorial Tournament at the Alberni Valley Multiplex featured something a little unusual—a game with an all-female officiating crew.
Kylie Scott, Nicole Gagnon and Avery Cole all grew up in Port Alberni and started playing hockey with the Alberni Valley Minor Hockey Association (AVMHA) at a young age. It was through the AVMHA that they picked up an interest in officiating, as well. Minor hockey players with the club can start officiating as soon as they turn 12 years old.
“I started as young as you can,” explained Scott, who is currently a student at the University of Victoria. She comes back to her hometown of Port Alberni during breaks to volunteer with the local hockey club. “I thought it was cool and wanted to try it.”
Gagnon learned about the opportunity from Scott. “I found out you could get work experience, so I got involved,” she explained.
Gagnon currently attends North Island College in Port Alberni, and strives to balance school with work and volunteering. “I try not to overwork myself,” she added.
Cole is currently a student at Alberni District Secondary School and also plays bantam hockey with the AVMHA. “I definitely like playing more [than officiating],” she said. “I play on three different teams. Sometimes it’s a lot.”
Scott, who referees in Victoria, had a chance last year to officiate at a female peewee provincial tournament in Dawson Creek. Although there are many female players involved in hockey in Port Alberni, the AVMHA doesn’t have any all-female teams yet, which made it an unusual experience for Scott.
“It was awesome,” she said. “Terrifying, but awesome. It was different, because it was girls’ hockey, and we don’t have that here. That was a really cool experience.”
Scott says she likes officiating, rather than playing, because you get to see the “other side” of hockey.
“You just get a different perspective of the game,” she explained.
Gagnon, meanwhile, says she doesn’t necessarily like one or the other more.
“I like being on the ice as much as possible,” she said. “Officiating helps you play so much better because you know more of the rules. You know what’s going to happen.”
According to Francois Warren, the AVMHA referee-in-chief, it is “a bit of an oddity” to have all three girls on the ice at the same time. On Saturday, the three of them made up the whole officiating crew for one game, with Scott acting as referee and Gagnon and Cole as the linespersons.
“It definitely doesn’t happen very often,” he said.
“Every four or five games there will be two of us on the ice,” explained Gagnon.
“But with me in school, it doesn’t really happen this year,” added Scott.
The Bryan Mason Memorial Tournament, which drew teams to the Alberni Valley Multiplex from all over Vancouver Island, ran from Feb. 15-18 and featured both a peewee and bantam recreational tournament. One of Port Alberni’s peewee teams placed third in the tournament with a 7-3 win against Port Hardy, while the other team finished sixth. Port Alberni’s bantam teams finished sixth and eighth in the tournament.

Elena Rardon Feb. 25, 2019 Alberni Valley News – Local Sports


100 Great Moments in BC Hockey History

AVMHA Alumni, Rob Shick makes list of 100 Great Moments in BC Hockey history.
BC Hockey is proudly celebrating our 100th Year Anniversary. The organization was created on February 9, 1919 in Vancouver, BC and there has been an incredible amount of history and tradition of hockey in Pacific Canada. On June 9, 2018, BC Hockey announced the list of 100 Great Moments in BC Hockey history.

Rob Shick spent 23 years in the National Hockey League (NHL) as a referee. He worked over 1,300 NHL games and added another 130 games in the playoffs. Some of Rob’s most notable assignments include the 2001 Stanley Cup finals between the Colorado Avalanche and New Jersey Devils, as well as two (2) All-Star Game appearances. He also refereed what remains the NHL’s third longest game in history, during the conference final matchup between the Pittsburg Penguins and the Philadelphia Flyers in 2000.
Rob’s jersey hangs in the referee room in his hometown of Port Alberni, where he stays quite active despite him living in Los Angeles. Rob hosts a charity golf tournament in the Vancouver Island town annually.


Referee Clinic

Officiating Clinic will be held Friday, Sep. 15th, 5:30 pm at the Best Western Barclay Hotel

Registration for clinic is done through bchockey.net website, prior to attending the clinic.

As a NEW Level 1 official you are required to complete the Hockey University ‘Officiating 1/2′ modules prior to attending the face to face clinic.

On Ice session will be Saturday, Sep. 16th, 9:30-11:00 am.  Participants will need their skates and helmet.

For more information, contact Francois Warren, AVMHA Referee-In-Chief – francoiswarren@shaw.ca  (250)720-5407

2015 On Ice Officials (Referee) Clinic

2015 Referee Awards

2015 Referee Awards

Every year we welcome AVMHA players (12 yrs. +) to our Referee Program.  If you have any questions, please contact our Referee-in-Chief Chris Canuel.

LEVEL 1’s (aged 12 to 15 years) AND THOSE NEW TO OFFICIATING (aged 16 years and up) receive certification in a blended model requiring the completion of both an online E-Learning Course and attendance at a face to face clinic.  The E-Learning Course must be completed prior to attending the clinic!

Registration Process

Search – Search available clinics via Hockey Canada E-Hockey

Register – Register for the face to face clinic of your choice: Officiating Level 1 or Officiating – New Adult Referee. (In some cases, you may have received a link to register for a private clinic sent from your association.)

Complete – Once you have registered and paid for the face to face clinic, you will receive two (2) emails to the email address you used to register.  Please make sure your email address is correct.  Your link to Hockey Canada E-Learning modules will be in one (1) email and the second email is your receipt.

E-Learning Modules

  • The E-Learning modules will take approximately 3.0 hours to complete
  • Delegates pay for both the e-learning modules and the face to face clinic in one payment. A receipt is emailed to delegates upon payment.



Level 1

  • 12 – 15 years of age as of December 31 of the current calendar year
  • Non-competitive minor hockey
  • E-learning component

Level 2

  • Minimum of 16 years of age on or before December 31 of the current calendar year
  • 70% required on national exam (45 questions)
  • Competitive minor hockey

Level 3

  • Minimum of 18 years of age on or before December 31 of the current calendar year
  • Must have been registered as Level 2 for previous two (2) consecutive years
  • Must have Referee Committee member approval to upgrade to Level 3
  • Referee minor hockey playoffs
  • 80% required on national exam (45 questions)

 AV Minor Hockey Officials (Referee) Clinic Level 1-2-3

 September 11, 2015

5:30 – 9:30 pm at Barclay Hotel

Sign Up online 

Contact:  Chris Canuel  chriscanuel10@gmail.com – 250-735-2310

On-Ice Referee Clinic – Sat. Sep. 12th – Coulson Rink – 11:45 am to 1:15 pm

Tournament Refs

Tournament Refs


Players on each team (Recreational & Competitive)in Atom, PeeWee Bantam and Midget, were awarded for Most Sportsmanlike, Most Improved and Most Dedicated Player. These awards were presented by the team coach(es).

 (Click on any of the photos below for a larger image.)

Coach of the Year – Bob Kimoto (absent)
This year’s Coach of the Year had many nominations not only this year but in past year’s. These nominations came from parent, players, officials and fellow coaches. This coach has been described as always being fair and treating all kids equally.

He became a member of AVMHA at age 11 when he played for 2 years on the PeeWee Recreational team before his family moved out of town. In 1998 with a child of his own he began coaching his son in the Nanaimo Minor Hockey Association.

In 2002 the family moved to Tofino and his son wanted to continue to play hockey which then renewed his membership in AVMHA. This coach has dedicated his years coaching both his son and daughters teams within the AVMHA. He has logged many kilometers and many hours travelling from Tofino to make his commitment to his children and to this association. Congratulations to Bob Kimoto.

Volunteer of the Year – Nicki Bezanson

VOLUNTEER OF THE YEAR - Nicki Bezanson (presented by AVMHA President, Meranda Vallee)

VOLUNTEER OF THE YEAR – Nicki Bezanson (presented by AVMHA President, Meranda Vallee)

Our minor hockey association wouldn’t be what it is without all of our volunteers.  From coaches to scorekeeprs and elveryone else in between, each and every volunteer is appreciated.

This volunteer has always gone above and beyond for her team and division.  Every year she steps up and bvolunteers, always willing to help out where ever need be.  She made sure everything ran smoothly at our first ever Bryan Mason Memorial tournament which was a huge success.

She is a kind, dedicated, hard working team mom and any team is lucky to heave her.  Congratulations to Nicki Bezanson.


Top Referee of the Year – Jordan Lavertu

TOP REFEREE OF THE YEAR - Jordan Lavertu (presented by Referee In Chief, Chris Canuel)

TOP REFEREE OF THE YEAR – Jordan Lavertu (presented by Referee In Chief, Chris Canuel)

Jessica States Memorial Award – Zakeysha Corey

JESSICA STATES MEMORIAL AWARD - Kakeysha Corey (with 2013 recipient, Nicole Gagnon & AVMHA Volunteer, Roxanne Leyland)

JESSICA STATES MEMORIAL AWARD – Zakeysha Corey (with 2013 recipient, Nicole Gagnon & AVMHA Volunteer, Roxanne Leyland)

This award is named after Jessica States, who was an active female hockey player when she was sadly killed in 1996, at age 11. Today she would be turning 29.

I look at the 17 previous award recipients and proudly see these enthusiastic young ladies continued on to play recreational and competitive hockey.

No doubt this year’s recipient will do the same. She has shown talent and skill that keeps on improving. She gets along with her team mates and has a great attitude on and off the ice. She definitely shows sportsmanship and dedication to the game. Oh behalf of Alberni Valley Minor Hockey and the States Family, Congratulations to Zakeysha Corey.

2014 Graduating Players;

Each graduate received a personalized jersey that was sponsored by local business.

Each graduate received a personalized jersey that was sponsored by local business.

Above and Beyond – Kord Kozocari

For going ABOVE & BEYOND, Kord Kozocari, presented by AVMHA President, Meranda Vallee

For going ABOVE & BEYOND, Kord Kozocari, presented by AVMHA President, Meranda Vallee

Kord has been involved since his kids started in hockey. When there was anything that needed some help, he was there. He coached kids in Atom when we were very desperate for coaches. He was voted in as Director at Large at last years AGM and after a full season, he has done a great job.





$5000. Cash Raffle Winner – Dan Shiner

Winner of April 2014 $5000. Cash Raffle - Dan Shiner

Winner of April 2014 $5000. Cash Raffle – Dan Shiner

VIAHA BULLETIN – Game Handshake





Vancouver Island Amateur Hockey Association has issued the following bulletin regarding the Post Game Handshake.




Click on image to for larger view

Referee Clinic

The annual referee clinic will be held in Port Alberni September 29th at the Best Western Barclay Hotel from 5:00 pm to 9:00 pm

LEVEL 1’s (aged 12 to 15 years) AND THOSE NEW TO OFFICIATING (aged 16 years and up) receive certification in a blended model requiring the completion of both an online E-Learning Course and attendance at a face to face clinic.  The E-Learning Course must be completed prior to attending the clinic!

Full details and registration instructions can be found on the BC Hockey website:  http://bchockey.net/Clinics/clinics.aspx

If you have any other questions, please contact our Referee In Chief, Chris Canuel –  chriscanuel10@gmail.com – 250-735-2310


Referees Enforce the Rules


The letter (below) is from the Nanaimo Minor Hockey Association highlighting a few rules that referees have often given leeway with but will no longer be doing so.  All referees have been been instructed to call it by the book and no longer give any leeway in these situations.

It is posted here to share with all Coaches, Parents and anyone else who may have some interest in the way we are going to try and enforce these rules.  Thanks.

Chris Canuel
Referee In Chief,  Alberni Valley Minor Hockey Association


In the past we have always instructed to use the Rule book as a guide and to apply it when necessary. We have encouraged the officials to communicate with the coaches (instead of through the captains or alternates) directly as it can be very effective at keeping cooler heads. Some coaches have abused that by having the officials over multiple times in a game thus slowing it down. We then instructed the officials to go only twice to a bench (when asked) to communicate with a coach but always bring a linesman with them.  This was contradictory to the rule book.

The rule book (2.4a) says all communication will be done through the Captain or Alternate when they are on the ice. It also says the Referee may allow the privilege of this conversation, which means he does not have to talk.

Based on recent events where this approach was considered unsubstantiated because no penalty was called we are now instructing all officials to call the game by the book, with special focus on the bench penalties from Team officials. The rule book clearly states that there are penalties for verbal abuse of officials and penalties pertaining to intimidation acts. It has also been apparent that each person’s opinion of what is verbal abuse is different. Because each person thinks this, we will make it simple. There will be NO communication from the bench directed towards any official. There will be no intimidating signals (9.2) come from the bench (hand gestures, no clapping, no throwing arms up in the air). The penalty for any such action will be a Bench Minor on the 1st occasion and a Game Misconduct on the 2nd. The rule book also states that an official does not have to assess a Bench minor before the Game misconduct. Please note that based on discrimination (9.2f) and all matters that deal with racial slurs, intimidation and all speak out related topics a Gross Misconduct can also be assessed. FYI a Gross Misconduct is an automatic 3 game suspension in BC Hockey.

Because the officials will follow the rule book to the letter and to the best of their ability there are 3 situations where the officials will communicate with the bench. The 1st is the fair play initiative. Each official will shake hands with each team official on the bench prior to the start of the game. Any refusal from any team official will be assessed 1 of the 3 following penalties (bench Minor, Game Misconduct or Gross Misconduct). Any official not doing the hand shake will be reported to the RCM and a 14 day suspension may be imposed. The 2nd communication (2.5g) between the bench will be with signals during the line change procedure. The referee will look at the visitor’s bench to allow a line change. Once 5 seconds are up OR the maximum numbers of players are allowed on the ice, the referee will raise his/her hand signaling the line change for the visiting team is complete. The referee will then look to the home bench and allow the home team 5 seconds or sooner (if they have put out the maximum number of players already) to change their players. Once this has happened the referee will lower his/her hand and the fast face-off rule will come into play.  The coach may choose (but does not have too) to give the referee a nod of the head or put 1 hand up (lower than the shoulder) to signal that he is not changing players. The 3rd communication is if any team tries to make a late player change and the referee has to send the players back to the bench the referee is directed to give a coach 1 warning and any subsequent late changes will be automatic Bench minors. Please note that any warning given to any team official constitutes the 1 warning. It became apparent that some coaches feel each of them is allowed their own warning. The onus is on any team official to relay this warning to all other team official’s.

In the past we have allowed the team official’s to ask about a rule because they do not know the rule. There are a multitude of rules and almost every rule has a case book situation to explain the rule. We have always offered a rule question or interpretation because there are a lot of rules in the rule book. Of course this courtesy is no longer. If you want to know the rule we encourage all team officials to read the rule book and casebook.

Below we have highlighted some common misconceptions on rules.

Body Contact is ALLOWED. Body Checking is NOT

You can only check a player that has the puck.

You cannot poke or jab at the goalie at ANY time regardless if the whistle is gone or not. If the puck is loose you can take the puck provided there has been no jabbing or poking of the goaltender.

Once the whistle has been blown, all players will cease doing anything to the other team. This includes the ever growing excuse, “I was protecting my goaltender”.

3 people control a hockey game (1 referee and 2 head coaches). If you feel 1 is not doing their part then the other 2 must step up and carry the extra weight. If you truly feel the referee has lost control then you must do your part to control your players. If you feel the referee has lost control and the other coach is not doing his part to control the players then add that to your game report that you have to file after every game.

Remember. Players get slashed, tripped, illegally checked and injured all BEFORE the referee blows their whistle.

This directive is harsh and one that will put us back 30 years and one that we are not happy to send. We are hoping that after we all see the reality of the rulebook working to the letter people will realize that the system we have been trying to invoke is far better.

Please take special attention to the following rules:

Rule 5.1 (b), (d)

Rule 2.4 (a), (c), (f) also casebook situation 3.

Rule 10.14 (a), (e) Note: (e) is very important to know.

Rule 9.2 (a), (f), (i). Read the entire rule (if you want) but (a), (f) &(I) are very important to know. Also special attention should go to situation 6 from the casebook. It says Linesman cannot physically call a bench minor or misconduct but must report the infraction to the referee at the next stoppage. At that time the referee will call the penalty that the linesman has reported. We mention this because a lot of people do not know Linesman can call bench penalties.

Also READ page 13. In Bold Letters it is under Supplementary Discipline.

 Please note we have never been a fan of calling a game by the rule book as we have always used the rule book as a guideline. Yes this is the best way! The rule book is very harsh and can grind a game to a standstill. However when push comes to shove and coaches and lawyers and other participants start demanding that correct procedures and calls were not made the only thing we have to fall back on is the hard core rule. Unfortunately the unwritten rules of game flow and communication that all participants have worked over the years to establish have all been wiped out by a few who do not understand the leeway allowed to them. We do apologize to all the good people out there who surely will suffer because of a few.

We know this is going to be difficult and we hope this madness will end. It is up to each you to decide on how to handle it and who to take your frustration out on. Please do not take it out on the officials. They are only doing the best that they can and no one is perfect so mistakes will be made, calls will be missed, kids will have injuries and goals may or may not be counted. These are unfortunately part of the game. That is why it is called amateur hockey.

Please note that all rules quoted are from the CHA rulebook which can be found online. Also note that associations can add to the rule book but never take away. The pecking order is as follows:

CHA Rulebook, BC Hockey Constitution which includes special rules, VIAHA Handbook, Nanaimo Minor Hockey special rules.

Thank you and we are deeply sorry we have been forced to go down this road.

Officials and coaches can still have communication prior to opening face-off. This allows the coaches and officials to get the game sheet correctly done.

R.F. Hodgson                                                                                                Hank Aarsen

Referee in Chief                                                                                           Referee Committee Advisor

Nanaimo Minor Hockey Association                                                      Nanaimo Minor Hockey Association