WHA Coaches

2021/2022 Season

Tim Benz, Hockey Director and Bantam Central States 2008 Head Coach

Tim played youth hockey for the Glenview Stars and Glenbrook South High School. Tim was a star hockey player at Glenbrook South High School, where he was Team Captain, MVP, All- Conference, All-Area and All-State his senior year. Tim was selected to the prestigious Chicago High School Showcase Team as both a junior and senior. Tim was also a member of the Football and Baseball teams at GBS. In baseball, he was a three-year starter on the Glenbrook South Varsity baseball team and was Team Captain, MVP, All-Conference and All-Area. In football, Tim was a two-year Varsity starter, Team Captain, MVP and All-Conference selection. After graduating in 2005, Tim played collegiately in the ACHA for DePaul University and professionally for teams in the AAHA and FHL.

Tim brings 11 years of coaching experience beginning in 2010 with the Glenview Stars. At the Stars (2010-2017), Tim coached teams from U8 Girls to Bantam Central States. In 2012 Tim was named the Director of Player Development and Skills for the Stars. In 2013 Tim was named head coach of the Glenbrook Girls hockey team. After that season, Tim joined the Loyola Gold coaching staff in 2014 as an assistant coach. In his final two years at Loyola he was named a Co-Head Coach. In 2017 Tim was named Hockey Director and Head Varsity coach of Saint Viator High School. During his time at Saint Viator the Lions have won multiple league championships, multiple final 4 and state final appearances at both the Varsity and JV levels. In 2018 Tim was named AHAI coach of the year. In 2020 Tim was named Hockey Director for the Wilmette Jr. Trevians.

In addition to his on-ice expertise, Tim is also an off-ice coach and program director. He served as Director for The Ultimate Athlete where he worked with hockey, football, lacrosse and baseball players in explosiveness, speed and strength training. Tim resides in Libertyville Illinois with his wife, Brett.

Chris Benz, Assistant Coach

Chris grew up in Glenview, playing hockey for the Glenview Stars, Chicago Mission and Glenbrook South. Post high school, Chris played for Indiana University and where he was selected to play in the World University Games. After college, Chris played professionally for teams in the ECHL and FHL. Chris started his coaching career in 2012 with the Glenview Stars and is currently an assistant coach on Saint Viator Varsity team where he has been since 2017. Previously, Chris was an assistant coach for Loyola Gold in 2016. He is also a Delaney Hockey Skills instructor. Chris is an employee at Zotos International where he is an Account Development Manager and resides in Chicago.

Greg Benz, Assistant Coach

Greg grew up playing for the Glenview Stars and Glenbrook South High School. Greg played at Indiana University with their ACHA Division I team and professionally in the FHL. Greg began coaching in 2013 with the Glenview Stars. From 2014 to 2016, he was General Manager and Head Coach at Indiana University. In 2017-2018 Greg was an assistant for the Saint Viator Varsity team and an assistant for the Chicago Young Americans Squirt team. He is also a Delaney Hockey Skills instructor. Greg is currently in Dental School at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Dan Braband, Assistant Coach Girls U12 and Assistant Coach PeeWee 1

Dan grew up in Wilmette playing for the Wilmette Hockey Association through Squirts. He moved to London for 5 years and, once returning, played his high school hockey at Loyola Academy. During Dan's 14 years working for the Chicago Blackhawks, he realized the importance of giving back to the hockey community and its young players and started coaching at Wilmette. Dan will start his 10th season coaching in the Wilmette organization and enjoys teaching, not only hockey, but life lessons along the way. He has coached Mite through Bantam and Girls U14. He coached a NIHL championship PeeWee team in 2017. Dan is also an elementary school teacher.

Trevor DiCarlo, PeeWee Central States Prospects Head Coach

Trevor played his youth hockey for the Fox Valley Cyclones and Bartlett High School hockey program. After graduating in 2007, Trevor went and played collegiately at Robert Morris University for a year. A level 4 USA Hockey certified coach, Trevor’s experience includes working with all ages (Mite to Midget) and spans from House league beginner players to AAA level athletes. Trevor has been a regional scout for junior hockey clubs based out of Minnesota, as well as has worked at the high school and collegiate levels. Trevor comes over from the Hoffman Estates Timberwolves Hockey Club where he was the Hockey Director for the previous 4 years and Head Coaching for the past 10 years. As the Hockey Director for the Timberwolves, he was integral in establishing both the 16U and 18U AA Midget programs as well as overseeing numerous NIHL President Cups and Blackhawk/Wolves Cup champions. Trevor prides himself on running teams with high tempo, high energy type of instruction that focuses on age-appropriate training with an emphasis on the player and team development. Trevor currently resides in S. Elgin, IL.

John Eichelberger, Mite 1 Assistant Coach

John grew up in the area and played for the Chicago Young Americans. John then went on to play for the US U18 National Team and at the University of Wisconsin. He was a draft pick of the Philadelphia Flyers in 2000 and played professionally in the ECHL. John resides in Wilmette with his family.

Jeremy Ellis, Midget U16 Central States Prospects Head Coach

Jeremy Ellis begins his 4th season as a coach in Wilmette, previously coaching at the Bantam and Peewee levels. Prior to Wilmette, Jeremy was a coach and skating instructor in the Skokie Flyers Program. He has also coached youth roller hockey and college club hockey in Colorado. Jeremy grew up in Detroit Michigan and played AAA hockey for the Art Van and Michigan Nationals programs. He attended Detroit Country Day High School on a hockey scholarship and went on to play club hockey in college. He also played professional roller hockey for 2 seasons in the MLRH. Jeremy is a Level 4 hockey official and has worked up to the minor league pro level during his 20+ years officiating. He has travelled internationally, including two trips to Namibia in Africa for international roller hockey tournaments and to provide referee training and development. Jeremy resides in Chicago and works in the energy industry. He has 3 children who are all high school athletes with his oldest a senior at Lane Tech.

Henry Hearon, Squirt Major Central States Assistant Coach

Henry is starting his third year of coaching, with previous experience as a lead instructor at multiple hockey camps and hockey schools. He recently graduated from Trine University in the NCHA conference and served as the captain for the 2019-20 season. Before transferring to Trine, Henry played for Morrisville State College in the SUNYAC conference. Henry also has professional experience playing in the SPHL. Henry believes in teamwork and work ethic as team success will bring on individual success. He will bring his playing experience from youth, collegiate and professional levels to help develop individuals as hockey players. He believes that hockey is a great tool for character development and creating positive team culture.

Nick Katz, Assistant Coach Midget U16 Central States Prospects

Nick played youth hockey for the Sabres and Neuqua Valley High School. After graduating in 2011, Nick played collegiately for Eastern Illinois University. Nick enjoys exercise and outdoor activities, including marathon running and golf. Nick resides in Lakeview and works in consulting for an accounting firm.

Bill Martin, Mite 2 and Mite 3 Head Coach

Bill has 35+ years of travel team, power skating and pre-hockey experience. Prior to coming to Wilmette, he helped revitalize the Charger’s Mite program helping them grow from 3 to 5 teams. Has taught for numerous organizations, camps and was a Hockey Director for 10+ years. He's taught at every level from pre-hockey and Mites to USHL with Omaha Lancers, Team Illinois, and Robert Morris University ACHA. Bill is a Level 5 USA Hockey coach since 1999 and has won 3 state championships and made 3 appearances in National Championships. Past students he has coached include NHL players Fred Knipsheer, Jed Ortmeyer, Matt Jones, Brandon Sutter, and JT Compher.

Chad McGinn, Assistant Coach

Chad’s love of hockey began when he was growing up in Green Bay, WI. He started playing in the Green Bay Youth Hockey Association and went on to play three years for Premontre High School. After high school, Chad played two years at St. Norbert College before the program gained national attention winning multiple NCAA Division III championships in recent years. After college, Chad played several games in the Great Lakes Hockey League with the Eagle River Falcons. Since moving to Wilmette, Chad continues to be active in the adult and youth hockey communities. He has coached for Wilmette at the House, Mite, Squirt, and Peewee levels as an assistant. Chad lives in Wilmette with his wife Jennifer and two children (Duke – 2008, Cameron – 2011).

Brad McMahon, PeeWee NHIL 2 Head Coach

Brad played youth hockey for the Chicago Minor Hawks (AAA) and New Trier West High School. After high school, Brad played collegiately at Northern Arizona University. Brad is in his 20th year of coaching and entering his 16th year as a head coach for the Wilmette Hockey Association. Brad has a wife and 4 children residing in Glenview, IL.

Scott Peach, U10 Girls Head Coach

Scott Peach is a Level 4 certified USA Hockey coach and has coached at levels from ADM to Midget. He coached AAA at CYA for five years at the Midget Minor and Midget Major levels, including several players who went on to play in the USHL, D1 NCAA and Pro levels. For the past three years, he was a Mite hockey coach with the Chicago Jets. Scott grew up in Canada and played his youth hockey in the Vancouver area. He played junior hockey for the Langley Thunder in the BCHL. He then played college hockey at Dartmouth College, where he was an Honorable Mention All-Ivy and Honorable Mention All-ECAC defenseman. Scott and his family recently moved to Wilmette, and they look forward to being part of the Wilmette hockey family.

Michael Rooney, U14 Girls Head Coach

Coach Rooney is from Park Ridge, IL. He began playing hockey at 4 years old. He continued to play through high school and college. As a high school senior, Coach Rooney was named to the All-State team. Coach Rooney chose to attend and play for the University of Louisville, where he played five seasons for the Cardinals over six years. During his five seasons, he won three conference championships. After school, he took the opportunity to play professionally in Germany for one season. Apart from his playing career, Coach Rooney is in his second season with the WHA and in his fourth season as a head coach. He has also served as a coach for the Louisville Ice Cardinals summer league. He has also coached with the Nashville Predators youth initiative program to grow the game "Little Preds." He has also participated as a volunteer assistant for USA Hockey's Try Hockey for Free program.

Randy Schlesinger, Bantam 3 Head Coach

Randy has coached for several local programs including nine seasons of New Trier Gray and Junior Varsity, eight seasons as head coach at the Winnetka Warriors, two seasons as hockey director at Deerfield, seven seasons in the Northbrook program serving as an assistant on the Glenbrook North Varsity team and as head coach for Bluehawk Squirt, PeeWee and Bantam teams. He also coached five seasons in the Skokie Flyers organization at the Squirt and Mite levels. Randy is currently hockey director and head Varsity coach for Oak Park River Forest High School. Randy has enjoyed State championships at the Varsity (2007, 2008), PeeWee AA (2005) and Bantam B (2010) levels Scholastic Cup Varsity Championships in 2007 and 2008 and Scholastic Cup Junior Varsity Championship in 2015. Randy’s playing career started in Minnesota. He spent three years in Dallas, TX, then arrived in Michigan. Randy captained the Varsity teams in East Lansing, MI in 1982 and 1983, and his team also competed in a Junior C league. After high school, he decided to pursue a degree at Michigan State University and forgo further hockey. Randy is grateful for his coaches including Herb Brooks in his off-season program from 1977-’79, Cha Karulak (1979-'80), Dr. Warren Weinberg (1980-'81), and Butch Miller (1981-'82)

Michael Strening, PeeWee NIHL 2 Assistant Coach

Michael Strening has been coaching youth sports for over 20 years. Michael was the head Junior Varsity boy’s lacrosse coach at Loyola Academy, and he coached boys’ and girls’ soccer, boys’ basketball, and was an athletic director in CPS for another. Michael coached in the Wilmette Hockey Association House league program for before joining the travel side as a head an assistant coach at the Mite, Squirt and Peewee levels, as well as coaching in the Wilmette goalie program. Michael is also the head of the Association new special education hockey program. Michael lives in Wilmette with his family, and he is a middle school bilingual special education teacher in Glenview .

Steve Tucker, Assistant Coach

Steve grew up playing hockey in the Detroit area with most of his youth hockey at the AAA level including Little Caesars, Compuware, GPD, and Michigan Nationals. Additionally, played three years Varsity for his local high school and spent his 4th year back in the AAA ranks. Within high school and throughout college, Steve spent the summer hours teaching at hockey camps on the east coast along and in the Detroit area. He started coaching at the House level at Wilmette when his kids started skating and is in his sixth-year coaching at Wilmette serving as assistant for Squirt 1, Mite 1, and Mite 2 travel teams. Steve lives in Wilmette with his wife Cathy and three children (Holly – 2014, Grant – 2012, Hank – 2009).

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