Skill improvement at all levels

Owen Kindree

There is no shortage of talented players who train at Snipe Academy, which was launched by a AAA hockey coach and provides high-quality instruction and programs for players looking to improve their games. And that includes a trio of youngsters – Owen Kindree, Ryan Jonsson and Jacob Couchie – who play for the London Jr. Knights’ Major Bantam AAA team.

And perhaps no one at Snipe knows these particular players better than Johnny Warren, who serves as their shooting and puck handling coach at the Academy. That means working on different types of shots, from in tight around the net to further out shots, as well as performing a number of puck handling drills.

“We get a lot done in the one-hour sessions,” says Warren, who is in his second year of coaching at Snipe Academy. “They’re all so highly-skilled, and a characteristic these boys all share is a strong work ethic, so there’s so much we can work on.”

Kindree, Jonsson and Couchie attend Snipe sessions at least once per week in the summer, and they also go in frequently during their winter seasons as well. And their coach says it has showed.

“Their shots have all improved, and their puck control keeps getting better all the time,” says Warren, who himself played for the Jr. Knights and then the St. Thomas Stars and the London Nationals before spending a season with the London Knights and Saint John Sea Dogs before retiring. “These boys work hard, and we get a lot done. They are here with a purpose – to get better and to learn. Every time they’re in they always compete and push each other to get better … it’s fun to watch.

“We also have a lot of laughs,” Warren says. “And they’re three of the nicest kids I get to work with at Snipe.”

Contributions by Johnny Warren for Snipe Academy