District 3 Officials' Night in Rockland

January 10, 2024

There were some special guests on the ice prior to the Ottawa Junior Senators and Rockland Nationals Junior A matchup on Friday January 5th. They were members of the District 3 Referee Association who invited their officials to take part in a unique learning experience.

Prior to puck drop, the group was treated to some pizza and a meet and great with the game crew of Chad White, Jacob Lamothe, Al Bérubé and Max Frost. The officials arrived at the rink early so they could share with the newer officials, things about their game preparation and what they are looking for during a game. The floor was then opened to questions and a great discussion was had about how to improve and advance as officials.

Four young officials, Jacob Thibault-Lafreniere, Zacharie Lamoureux-Therrien, Devon Bonneau and Vincent Mayer were then chosen from the group to take part in some on-ice festivities. The four officials got to suit up in their official’s gear and jump on the ice for the pre-game skate with the game crew, checking of the nets, meeting the coaches, national anthem and referee fist bumps. “It was exciting to be on the ice. It was fun being out with the Junior A’s. I can’t wait to ref one of those games”, said Devon Bonneau, who is enjoying his first season of officiating.

The young officials then joined the rest of the group, which included Myles McLaughlin - St. Isidore Referee in Chief (RIC), Stephane Vinnete - Rockland RIC and Richard Morin - Embrun RIC in the stands to take in the game. The group discussed the officials’ positioning, rules and game management. Myles even challenged the group to a fun contest of correctly naming who scored and assisted on goals before it was announced on the PA system. Luckily it was a high scoring affair and official, Jaxon Highley got it correct on the 5th goal of the game.

“We will definitely be doing this again next year with more notice to get as many referees out as we can whether new or not.”, said Myles McLaughlin, St. Isidore RIC. The night was an overall success with lots of fun had and lessons learned.

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