No Red Lights: Hockey: Princeton Packet Article on Textbook Goaltending - Goalie News And Instruction By Roxanne Gaudiel

Princeton Packet Article on Textbook Goaltending

Here is a recent article on the Goalie Camp I coach at in Central New Jersey.

Goaltending Camp helps prepare students for life
Fiander camp grooms young players

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Tuesday, November 4, 2008 1:20 PM EST
By Lisa Zola, Special Writer

At a time of the year when most kids are cooling off with a swim in the ocean or a neighborhood pool, 22 serious goaltenders were cooling off with a different form of H2O — ice.

Craig Fiander, founder and director of Textbook Goaltending, held his 10th annual Elite goalie clinic this past summer at Ice Land in Hamilton. Fiander, a native of Canada, has a professional resume including stints with the Montreal Canadiens’ AHL affiliate, the Rochester Americans (AHL) and the Trenton Titans (ECHL). A graduate of Princeton University, where he earned a Bachelor’s degree in economics and a certificate in political economy, Fiander developed his goaltending school with a philosophy centered upon using academic and goaltending skills to ultimately play college hockey.

Fiander tells his goaltenders to “focus on what you can control, not the other goalies, coaches or team/organization politics. Just work hard, compete and be resilient at all times (practice, games and off-ice).” Although most players aspire to make it to the pros or play in the Olympics, the reality is that less than one percent will ever achieve that goal. “Gaining a degree will enable you to lead a successful career in the ‘real world’,” Fiander said. “Along the way you will learn valuable life lessons through the proper approach.” Although former Textbook students have enjoyed pro careers, others are successful investment bankers, aerospace engineers, commercial real estate executives, and dentists just to name a few.

Fiander was trained at Princeton by Mike Geragosian, who is now in his ninth year as the Boston University goalie coach. He believes that “coaches will look for the three H’s when selecting goalies — heart, hope and head.” Fiander has put together a talented staff, including PU men’s ice hockey head coach Guy Gadowsky.

Sharing the same philosophies about education as Fiander, Gadowsky believes that the number one priority for any college bound goaltender is to be an excellent student. Like BU’s coach Geragosian, Gadowsky feels that heart matters greatly. “A few years ago, Keith Bartusch was the number one goaltender in the WCHA,” Gadowsky said. “Before becoming a goalie at the age of 13, Bartusch was a bull rider who later played junior C hockey. He worked hard and had lots of heart.”

One goalie who has the three H’s and exceptional academics is PU goaltender Zane Kalemba, who has been part of Textbook’s Elite staff for several years. “Zane has been consistent throughout the season and comes up with the big saves when we needed him to,” Gadowsky said. “He gives our team so much confidence.” Kalemba added: “The only way to be successful is to constantly work at it, and that takes a lot of patience and time. You have to be totally committed and really want to do it. The bottom line is that if you enjoy the game and want to get better you have to constantly push yourself and take the next step when you are ready”.

Other instructors included former Lawrenceville School and Wesleyan University goalie Steve Binswanger and former Princeton University goalie Roxanne Gaudiel, who has seen a dramatic improvement in the goaltenders over the past few summers since being involved with the camp. “These young goalies are very focused, trying to grab everything they can,” Gaudiel said. “They are like sponges. They have to get out there and go to the showcases where the recruiters are.” She also feels that serious goalies, although needing down time, do not take the summer off. “It is important to stay focused through the summer, using this time constructively to work on strengths and weaknesses,” Gaudiel said.

Student goaltenders have much to gain from this goalie school. James Komianos, a Mercer Chief AA and West Windsor-Plainsboro North High School goalie, believes that Fiander’s camps have helped his game tremendously. “The shooters at the clinic are amazing,” Komianos said. “The coaches give us a lot of power skating drills which help with skating speed between the pipes and endurance. I feel like this has taken me to a new level.” Fiander’s motto with his students is self explanatory. K.I.S.S. — Keep it Simple Square. As the speed and the skill of the game increases, he preaches body control, explosiveness and aggressiveness if they want to take it to the next level.