April 10th the Genesee Amateur Hockey Association held its Annual Awards Banquet at Batavia Downs. The event was attended by 330 players, family members and honored guests. Jen Bower, president of GAHA served as the Master of Ceremony for the event.
The Sponsors were recognized as GAHA is extremely grateful for their support of youth hockey in the Batavia area. The 2015-16 team sponsors were: Alex’s Place, Baltz Concrete, Castilone Chrysler Doge Jeep, Clark~Patterson~Lee, Collin Crane Memorial, Falleti Motors, Garland Enterprises, Graham Manufacturing, Michael Napoleone Memorial Foundation, Reed Eye Associates, T.F. Brown's, Toyota/Scion of Batavia and Turnbull Heating and Air.
Other sponsors at the Red, White and Blue level were: Bed & Bones Pet Lodge, Chesley’s Automotive, Falleti.com, Ken Barrett, Valle Jewelers, Viele Construction, Lambert’s Design Jewelers, Tomaszewski Funeral Home and T-Shirt’s Etc.
The Beginner Program is sponsored by Tim Horton’s.
Erik Triftshauser presented the individual teams and recognized their accomplishments throughout the season. Overall GAHA had a great hockey season and four teams participated in the State finals. The 2015-16 season was made up of 14 teams including a girls team which excelled. GAHA also had a Session I and II Beginners Program, which included 50 players many of whom will move up to team play next season.
Three local companies/foundations also contributed not only as sponsors but additional financial contributions toward GAHA’s cross ice boards for our Mite Program – these young teams play cross ice to better their skating and hockey skills and these boards will be used to divide the ice. Those contributors are the David McCarthy Memorial Committee, Alex’s Place and Viele Development and Construction.
The 2015-16 Genesee Amateur Hockey Associations awards were given to:
Jack Porter Coach of the Year for the Empire Division was presented to Kevin Snieszko, and for the WNY Division to Michael Webb.
WNY Division Manager of the year to Chaunda Hertel and for the Empire Manager of the Year to Sarah Lemley.
Zac Johnson Memorial Award to a GAHA player who shows dedication and love for the game of hockey was presented to Hagan Triftshauser.
Jon Wiseman Sportsmanship Award presented to an Empire Player who exhibits outstanding sportsmanship was awarded to Jimmy Reardon.
Pam Borden Memorial Award presented to a GAHA player who best exemplifies strength, determination and perseverance while dealing with adversity awarded to Nick Baumler.
Tom Scott Volunteer of the Year Award to Kathy Antinore.
Matthew Mondi Award to be presented to a Mite (4-8 yrs.) player and this year awarded to Samuel Pies.
Sharon Valyear Dedication Award was presented to two female players that showed hard work and commitment to the sport of hockey and was awarded to Katie Smith and Katie Carmichael.
Herbert Heschke Memorial Award is presented to a Squirt Empire (9-10 yrs) player who has shown the greatest improvement this season is awarded to Alex Bartz.