By John Robert
When Andy Greene played hockey for Trenton High School, it was impossible to predict he would make it to the National Hockey League.
“You can’t predict that,” said his former coach Mike Turner, still the Trenton Varsity hockey coach, “but he had tremendous vision. In the State Championship, he scored a big goal for us.”
So, while few make it to the top level of competition, Andy Greene has possessed the skill and the good fortune to have made the New Jersey Devils, playing his sixth year on defense for the team as they make another run at the Stanley Cup.
Before his time in the NHL, Greene attended Miami of Ohio University, earning his degree in teaching while he played the sport he loves. Now, he is trying to give back to the community through the Andy Greene Hockey School, which is returning to Trenton this summer after a highly successful inaugural run last year.
Youth players who attend the camp will get a chance to interact both with Greene and several college coaches who help run it.
The school runs from July 30-August 3. Age brackets range from Mite (6-8) to Bantam (13-14), but the program hopes to draw more players from the Bantam age bracket this year, since so many 12-year-old kids were looking forward to coming back to the school for another year. Last year, the school drew 80 participants, and this year organizers were hoping to register 120 by the May 1 deadline.
The program was launched thanks to efforts by Greene, his agent, and his mother all wanting to give back to Trenton.
“It’s a quality interaction and the kids have fun,” said Andy’s mother, Linda Greene, who still resides here. “He’s proud of Trenton, and he goes beyond putting on the school to show it, giving back the profits from the school to local youth sports.
“He gives to a local Peewee AA team, the Silver Sticks, the Trenton Hockey Association, varsity baseball,” and even helps to sponsor scholarships for students, showing his dedication to education.
The school is held at the Kennedy Recreation Center, and coaches attending also include former head coach of the Saginaw Spirit Todd Watson, current associate coach for the Saginaw Spirit John Kisil, professional skating coach Ken Muir, head coach at Miami of Ohio University Enrico Blasi, and head coach of Bowling Green University Chris Bergeron.
As Coach Turner said, the school “gets kids invested in hockey young, to help them carry it through life as they grow.
Just like Andy Greene.