1. U12A goalie from Delano wins set of Brian’s gloves

    Steve Carroll  ·  

    Congratulations to Maria Manuel, a U12A goalie from Delano, Minnesota, who was selected to win a customized set of gloves from Brian’s Custom Sports.

    Manuel was fitted for her GNETiK 8.0 gloves during the 2017 Let’s Play Hockey Expo held in mid-March in St. Paul.

    Her name was chosen from the hundreds of goalies who had their shutouts posted on the Carroll Goalie School/Brian’s Custom Sports Shutout Wall and each week in Let’s Play Hockey Newspaper.

    Brian’s Custom Sports sponsors the Carroll Goalie School.

    L-R: Brad Johnson, Brian’s Custom Sports, Maria Manuel, U12A goalie from Delano, Steve Carroll, Carroll Goalie School.

  2. Gustavus goalie earn’s All-American honors

    Steve Carroll  ·  

    Gustavus women’s hockey sophomore goaltender Amanda DiNella (Oakbrook Terrace, Ill.) was selected to the 2017 NCAA Division III CCM Women’s Hockey All-American West First Team, released this evening by the American Hockey Coaches Association. DiNella becomes the 15th player, fifth sophomore, and first ever goalie in Gustavus Women’s Hockey history to earn the prestigious honor, the last recognition coming from current assistant coach Courtney Boucher in 2015.

    Goalie Coach Steve Carroll with Amanda DiNella at 2017 NCAA Division III National Tournament.

    DiNella, a Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference All-Conference Team member, finished the regular season as the league’s goaltending champion, posting the MIAC-best save percentage (.947), goals against average (0.92), winning percentage (.813), and most shutouts with eight.

    In 20 appearances and 17 starts, DiNella has compiled a record of 13-3-2. She owns an NCAA-best 1.08 goals against average and is tied for the most shutouts with eight. In addition, her .778 win percentage ranks eighth while her .944 save percentage ranks 13th. In 1,108:21 minutes played, DiNella has accumulated 329 saves and allowed just 20 goals on the season.

    DiNella has backstopped a Gustavus defense that ranks sixth nationally in goals allowed per game (1.41). She is the first Gustie goaltender to post 13 wins since Lindsey Hibbard posted 16 wins in 2012-13 and is one shutout away from tying a program record of nine shutouts in a season, set by Breanna Scavo in 2007-08. DiNella has greatly exceeded her numbers from her freshman season, improving her win total from three to 13 while nearly cutting in half the number of goals allowed. March 10th at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls, DiNella helped guide Gustavus to its first NCAA Tournament victory since 2013 as she registered a career-high 38 saves in the 3-2 NCAA Tournament first round win.

  3. State tournament memories

    Steve Carroll  ·  

    I had the opportunity to play goalie in the eight-team state hockey tournament during my senior year at Edina-East High School in 1977. We had a good team that season. In fact, 14 of the 18 players on the playoff roster would go on to play either NCAA Division I or Division II hockey.

    In the section finals, played before at a near capacity crowd at the Met Center in Bloomington, we knocked off our cross-town rivals from Edina-West 6-2 to advance to state.

    The 33rd annual tournament was played at the St. Paul Civic Center, the historic old arena that featured the clear dasher boards.

    The talented tournament field included Rochester John Marshall (22-2), Mounds View (23-1), Hill-Murray (22-2), South St. Paul (18-1-5), Minneapolis Southwest (15-7-2), Edina-East (22-1), Grand Rapids (19-3-1) and Roseau (23-0). The record of the tournament qualifiers was 164-17-8.

    In the opening round, we played the late game on Thursday night against Neal Broten, his brother Aaron and Busty Erickson from Roseau. The Rams were ranked number one in the state, we were second.

    I seem to recall there some sort of pre-game mix-up as both teams took the ice for warm-ups wearing their green jerseys. We eventually made the switch to our white sweaters and it was time to play.

    I remember the ice was soft, the lights were bright and it was hot in the Civic Center. There was a also standing room only crowd of 17, 409, which, at that time, was the largest crowd to ever watch a hockey game in Minnesota.

    A majority of the fans in the building were pulling for the northern Minnesota school, except for a couple of sections in the corner where the Hornet faithful were seated.

    I was so excited to be there – achieving a goal I had been dreaming about since I first strapped on the pads as a peewee.

    But I was also nervous, playing on such a big stage, in front of a record crowd and with thousands more throughout Minnesota watching the game on WTCN-TV with announcers Joe Boyle and Lou Nanne.

    Once the puck dropped, I couldn’t wait to make my first save. After that, I was able to settle down and focus on the task at hand.

    It was a back and forth contest with both teams exchanging excellent scoring chances.

    Teammate Bret Bjerken broke the scoreless tie a couple minutes into the third period. Another Hornet tally by John Donnelly a few minutes later sealed the 2-0 victory.

    That set-up a semifinal showdown against the two-time defending state champions from Grand Rapids. Their team featured a number of future Division I hockey players including current University of Minnesota Head Coach Don Lucia.

    This game turned out to be a shootout from the opening face-off. Grand Rapids built up a 4-2 lead in the second period before we came storming back with four straight goals to take the lead in the third. Grand Rapids added one late but we hung on to win it in electrifying fashion 6-5. Current Michigan Tech Head Coach Mel Pearson scored two goals in that game for the Hornets.

    With the win, we advanced to the finals to face Rochester John Marshall, a team we did not know a whole lot about. But what we did know was the squad from southern Minnesota could put the puck in the net and had one of the best goalies in the state in sophomore Paul Butters who would go on to play at the University of Minnesota.

    Rochester scored on a breakaway 36 seconds into the title game and added another seven minutes later. But we battled back on goals from Dave Terwilliger and Tom Kelly to tie the game at 2-2 after two. But that was a close as we got. JM added two in the third to win it 4-2.

    Even though we team lost in the championship – playing in the state tournament was a wonderful experience and something I’ll never forget.

    And if I ever need a trip down memory lane, I can pop in a DVD and watch the games from that memorable March 40 years ago.


    Fourteen players on the 1976-77 Hornets team
    would go on to play college hockey.

    Name                                     College
    John Anderson                       Gustavus Adolphus College
    Bret Bjerken                            Michigan Tech
    Steve Carroll                            Mankato State
    John Donnelly                        Dartmouth
    Mark Gagnon                          Cornell
    Paul Gagnon                            Notre Dame
    Gordie Hampson                    Michigan
    Scott Hampson                       Colorado College
    Tom Kelly                                Colorado College
    Mike Lauen                             Michigan Tech
    Mel Pearson                            Michigan Tech
    Steve Pepper                           Minnesota
    Bill Peterson                           Hamline
    Dave Terwilliger                    Minnesota


  4. Coach Carroll featured in hometown magazine

    Steve Carroll  ·  

    I grew up playing hockey in the Edina Association and made the switch to goalie during my last year of peewees. The coach of that team saw me playing goalie in a neighborhood floor hockey tournament during the summer and asked if I would be interested in playing goalie on skates. I said I would give it a try and he picked me to be one of the goalies on the “A” team.

    After that season, I played two years of bantam “A” hockey before earning a spot on the Edina-East High School varsity squad. In high school, we made it to the state tournament during my senior season. We won our first two games in the tournament at the St. Paul Civic Center before falling in the championship tilt. Nonetheless, it was quite the thrill and something I will never forget. Thanks for the magic of videotape, I have the games from back then and periodically watch them to rekindle the memories.

    Last fall, the Edina Magazine contacted me about doing a feature story on my hockey career in the community and my goalie school, which is now in it’s 23rd season. The Carroll Goalie School holds a three-day clinic at Braemar Arena in Edina, the exact rink I learned to play the game in.

    Here is my story that appears in the February issue of Edina Magazine: http://edinamag.com/protecting-pipes

  5. 2017 CGS schedule now available

    Steve Carroll  ·  

    I am excited to let you know that our 2017 schedule has been posted on our website.

    This will be our 23rd year of goalie development excellence as we help boys and girls, ages 6-15, achieve success between the pipes!

    Our popular skill development programs are filled on a first-come, first-served basis, so I encourage you to register early for best selection.

    Sessions offered include:

    • Intro to Goaltending
    • Intermediate Skills
    • Advanced Skills
    • Tryout Tune-up

    The sessions will be held on weekends at Richfield Arena, Eagan Civic Center, Braemer Arena (Edina) and Schwan Super Rink (Blaine).

  6. CGS getting set for our 23rd season

    Steve Carroll  ·  

    We are getting ready for our 23rd season of helping goalies improve their skills, consistency, confidence and overall game performance at our popular weekend camps that will be held throughout Minneapolis-St. Paul area.

    Check out our 2017 schedule.


    Coach Carroll helping a goalie at one of his weekend sessions.

    This year, CGS will offer four different skill development programs: Intro to goaltending, intermediate skills, advanced skills and tryout tune-up. Ice times are at night and on weekends at Braemar Arena (Edina), Eagan Civic Center, Richfield Arena, Schwan Super Rink (Blaine)

    In 2016, goalies from throughout Minnesota and five other states (Alaska, California, Iowa, North Dakota, Wisconsin) joined us for a weekend of skill development.

    Goalie parents like the variety of programs we offer because they realize that training under the watchful eye of Director Steve Carroll and his staff can make a significant impact in the development of their kids.

    Here is what some last year’s participants said about their CGS experience.

    “CGS has improved our son’s goalie skills tremendously the past two years. Coach Carroll and his staff always treat the goalies with respect and you can tell they love what they do.”
    Megan A., Woodbury, Minnesota

    “Is it a coincidence; five years with Carroll and five winning seasons?
    Logan C., Lakeville, Minnesota

    “Our son learned a lot about goaltending and had a blast doing it. We will be back for more camps for sure.”
    Steve F., Mason City, Iowa

    “This is our second time with Steve Carroll. We love the camp, from the good price/value, coaching, ice time, and skills that are developed. Once again we highly recommend Steve’s camp/clinics. He is very knowledgeable, has a great heart, and truly loves helping the kids. Thank you Steve and coaches for another great, successful camp, which our son Ethan Kalafatich truly enjoyed!”
    Brian K., Mahtomedi, Minnesota

    “Ty made some big improvements in his skating. Namely shuffles and c-cuts. I would highly recommend this school just for skating instruction alone. Coach Carroll was also very approachable and helpful with his answers to my questions. Great job!”
    Chad S., International Falls, Minnesota

    “Coaches are very knowledgeable and pushed my daughter beyond her comfort zone.”
    Joshua S., Delano, Minnesota

    “My son wanted the weekend to be longer!!!”
    Kristi B, St. Paul, Minnesota

    “Really friendly instructors who care about everyone and made it fun and helpful.”
    Brandon B, Sartell, Minnesota

    “Great camp and a good learning experience for my son. He came off the ice with a smile on his face everyday!”
    Mark U., Duluth, Minnesota

  7. Wonderful trip to Europe

    Steve Carroll  ·  

    As the goalie coach for the Gustavus Adolphus College women’s hockey team, Coach Steve Carroll had the wonderful opportunity to visit Switzerland, Austria and Italy over the holiday break.

    We flew into Zurich, Switzerland and spent the day touring downtown. From there we headed by bus to Bolzano, Italy. On the next day, we were off to the resort town of Kitzbuhel, Austria. Even though it was early January, they did not have any snow on the ground. The ski hills were open thanks to snowmaking machines.

    On day three, we visited downtown Bolzano and all the Christmas markets that were still open and very festive. Then we were off to Milan, Italy, the financial and fashion hub of the country. There were tons of people there and that place was something else.

    After that, we moved on to Como, Italy. More Christmas markets were open and they also had an outdoor skating rink nearby that was filled with locals. We returned later that night for a New Year’s eve celebration. Many of the buildings in the courtyard area had colorful winter scenes projected on the walls, which made for a spectacular setting. At midnight, there was a huge fireworks show over Lake Como.

    On our last full day, we journeyed to Lugano, Switzerland and toured that wonderful city on a lake. Besides all the spectacular places we visited, the squad posted a 3-0 record in the exhibition games.  Overall, it was an awesome and memorable trip.


  8. Goalie coaching workshop set for Dec. 18 in Brooklyn Park

    Steve Carroll  ·  

    Minnesota Hockey and USA Hockey have announced they will cooperatively host a High Performance Goaltending Coaching Workshop from 1:30-8:30 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 18 at the Brooklyn Park Community Center. The workshop is designed to teach youth hockey coaches of all skill levels how to effectively work with and develop goalies.img_5988

    The clinic will include a series of classroom presentations as well as an on-ice session where participants will observe demonstration stations and get a chance to try various goalie-specific skating movements.  Coaches should bring skates and gloves and must wear a helmet during
    the on-ice session.

    Scheduled presenters include:

    • Phil Osaer, USA Hockey’s ADM Goaltending Manager
    • Mike MacMillan, USA Hockey’s National Coach-in-Chief
    • Steve Carroll, Minnesota Hockey’s Goalie Development Coordinator
    • Justin Johnson, goalie coach for the University of Minnesota men’s hockey team.

    The workshop is open to registered USA Hockey coaches of all skill levels.

    Click here to download the paper registration form. Pre-registration is required.

    The High Performance Goaltending Coach Clinic is the latest in the series of initiatives focused on boosting the recruitment and development of goaltenders in Minnesota.

    This summer Minnesota Hockey purchased 300 sets of the newly released QuickChange goalie pads, which are designed to introduce more players to the position.

    Then, Goalie Development Coordinator Steve Carroll hosted eight goalie skill sessions in September. This coaching clinic brings the initiatives full circle by providing coaches throughout Minnesota with the tools and resources to help young goalies reach their potential.

  9. Have your goalie’s shutout posted on the Wall

    Steve Carroll  ·  

    For the third straight season, we have partnered with Brian’s Custom Sports and Let’s Play Hockey newspaper to sponsor a “Shutout Wall.”

    Know a youth hockey goalie who earned a shutout?

    shutoutwallEmail the following information to editor@letsplayhockey.com: Goalie’s name, team name, level of play, opponent, shutout date, total saves, final score, mailing address.

    Submitted shutouts will appear in Let’s Play Hockey and on this page of www.letsplayhockey.com.

    One goalie each week will be randomly chosen to win a Carroll Goalie School jersey and Brian’s t-shirt.

    Also one lucky goalie will win a set of Brian’s goalie gloves with the winner announced at the Carroll Goalie School/Brian’s Custom Sports booth at the 2017 Let’s Play Hockey Expo.

    2016 Winner from Woodbury

    Coach Carroll presenting Otto's his new set of gloves from Brian's Custom Sports.

    Coach Carroll presenting Otto’s with his new set of gloves from Brian’s Custom Sports.

    In March, Woodbury Peewee “A” goalie Otto Altman was selected to win a customized set of Subzero gloves from Brian’s Custom Sports. He was fitted for his gloves and picked out the color combination during the 2016 Let’s Play Hockey Expo in St. Paul.

    Altman’s name was chosen from the hundreds of goalies who had their shutouts posted on the Carroll Goalie School/Brian’s Custom Sports Shutout Wall online at www.letsplayhockey.com and each week in Let’s Play Hockey Newspaper.


  10. Coaching goalies at Gustavus

    Steve Carroll  ·  

    This October, I begin my 16th season as an assistant coach of the Gustavus Adolphus College women’s hockey team. I primarily work with the goalies but also assist with recruiting future student-athletes.

    My older brother Mike is the team’s head coach, while a younger brother, Pat, serves as a volunteer assistant.

    Coach Carroll is an assistant coach at Gustavus Adolphus College.

    Coach Carroll is an assistant coach at Gustavus Adolphus College.

    I usually make it to practice on Wednesday nights. During that time, I work with the three goalies as a group and also get one-on-one time with each of them.

    I then rejoin the team on weekends and am on the bench during games.

    During our the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference schedule, we face-off against St. Thomas, Augsburg, Saint Benedict’s, St. Catherine’s, St. Olaf, Concordia, Saint Mary’s, Bethel and Hamline.

    Our non-conference games are against UW-Eau Claire, UW-Stevens Point, UW-River Falls, UW-Superior and St. Norbert’s.

    Also this year, we are going to Europe and will have the opportunity to play a handful of exhibition games.

    I am looking forward to another exciting season of coaching the Gusties.