At only 23 years old Aaron Kaatz has been coaching hockey for the past 6 years of his life. When he was forced to leave playing hockey due to a knee injury, he quickly turned to coaching and giving back to the game he loved. Aaron is in his second year of AAA coaching and is with the Bantam 1 Hawks team this year. Just this year he obtained his High Performance 1 coaching certification where he is also a trained hockey instructor. Recently completing his Bachelor of Business Administration at the University of Winnipeg and maintaining a very high GPA made him a perfect candidate for the Fleming Family Hockey Coach Scholarship.
This scholarship was created by Jennifer Fleming, in memory of her father Jake Fleming and her brother Wayne Fleming. The scholarship recognizes an upcoming Manitoba hockey coach who demonstrates similar coaching and leadership traits that were characteristic of both Jake and Wayne.
About the Fleming family:
The Fleming family hockey obsession solidified in the early 1960’s which lead Jake to establish and operate the Canadian Professional Hockey Schools until 1991. Jake’s leadership was also instrumental in getting the AAA tier system started in Winnipeg, which makes tonight’s presentation to a AAA coach very special. In the meantime, Wayne’s love of coaching began with the CPHS. He went on to play four years for the Manitoba Bisons in the 1970s and was the team’s head coach for nine seasons in the 1980s. Wayne coached Team Canada in multiple Olympics, including the 2002 Gold Team, as well as numerous NHL teams.
Congratulations Aaron and thank you on behalf of AAA Hockey Winnipeg for all of you hard work in coaching hockey’s future stars!
On Thursday January 10th AAA Hockey held their annual All-star game press conference which showcased 6 players, 2 from each division, and served as the lead up event to the All-star day which was on January 12, 2019. The players that represented the divisions were Lukas Hansen and Peter Magnus who represented the Bantam 2 division, Jason Ruff and Jackson Sirrell to represent the Bantam 1 division and finally Rhonan White and Anton Uruski who represented the U17 Midget Prep league. Each of the players coaches wrote a short biography on them and their impact on the team this year which you can see below.
Team East - Lukas Hansen – Bantam II Warriors
Lukas Hansen is the captain of the b2 Winnipeg Warriors. He is what every coach wants in a player. A very high skill set, a great work ethic and a passion for the game that keeps him motivated and honest. He currently leads the league in goals with 15 goals through the first 18 games.
Team West - Peter Magnus – Bantam II Monarchs
Peter is an outstanding student athlete, and AAA teammate. Boosting the best shot in the league Peter is a danger to the opposition every time he touches a puck. Leading the Monarchs in goals (10) and third in points (19), number 10 has the ability to change a game at a moments notice. He is a wonderful teammate with amazing grads and attends the prestigious St. John’s Ravenscourt. The future is very bright for this young man.
Team East - Jason Ruff – Bantam I Monarchs
As the captain of the Bantam 1 AAA Monarchs Jason Ruff is a true leader on and off the ice.
On the ice the 6’1” rugged and skilled defensemen shows his leadership by controlling the play offensively and defensively. Offensively he anchors the power play and boasts an impressive 8 goals and 8 assists in 20 games. 5 on 5 he leads the team with a very impressive plus 35 ranking.
Jason’s leadership off the ice is second to none. He garners everyone’s respect and teammates feed off his positive attitude. Jason’s work ethic, skill set, and leadership makes him a very deserving candidate for the 2019 AAA Eastern All Star team.
Team East – Jackson Sirrell – Bantam I Sharks
Jackson is a great team player who is able to remain positive in all situations on and off the ice. This is truly shown with the respect that he gives to his fellow players as well as his coaches. Jacksons hockey sense, ability to see and make plays and his powerful shot has made him one of the elite players in the Bantam 1 division. Jackson is currently sitting at 7 goals and 11 assists for 18 total points this season.
Team East – Rhonan White – U17 Midget Prep Sharks
Rhonan is a big character player, in his 2nd year playing defense. He has the ability to make big plays, and is a competitor with a big heart. You can always find Rhonan smiling, and is always respectful with all his teammates and peers. He is currently sitting 3rd among league defence in scoring with 5 goals, 11 assists totalling 16 points. His great work continues beyond the rink and into school where he has 1st honors at MBCI School. Rhonan is a coach’s definition of a true captain.
Team West – Anton Uruski – U17 Midget Prep Monarchs
Anton is the Captain of the U17 Monarchs who plays a complete 200 ft game. His offensive abilities (6G-16A-22PTS) make him the 2nd ranked offensive defenseman in the U17 Midget Prep League behind only his line-mate Hayden Forrest.
Anton is a master of the first pass to break out of the zone and a keystone on the Monarchs Power Play and Penalty Kill units. Anton’s offensive skills, though impressive, are not solely what make him a great hockey player. The defensive side of his game is second to none in the league, and he does it all with an edge that has also earned him 54 PIM. Opposing players rarely even try to get by Anton in a 1 on 1 situation, and for this they cannot be blamed.
Take all of these qualities and add to it a natural affinity for leadership, and an unrivalled effort and compete level, and you get the ultimate defenseman and captain. One which any coach in the league would be ecstatic to have in their arsenal.