Head of Hockey Development - Ryan Blair was born in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. At 16 Ryan's family moved to Northern Virginia where he finished out his youth hockey career and began his 3 years of junior hockey - 2 years in the North American Hockey League (NAHL) with the Texarkana Bandits and 1 year in the Eastern Junior Hockey League (EJHL) with the Foxboro Stars. Earning a college hockey scholarship, Ryan was recruited to play Division 1 hockey at UMass Lowell and played all 4 years, playing in 141 games with the Riverhawks. After graduating in 2011 he went on to play two and a half years of professional hockey in the East Coast Hockey League (ECHL). Coach Blair enters his second year as the Head of Hockey Development with the Junior Rangers. Along with his Head of Hockey Development duties, Ryan is also the Head Coach of the Boston Junior Rangers EHL Junior Team. His playing experience, along with his positive and energetic personality has made Ryan an excellent addition to the program staff.
Mite Development - Bill Heffron is a co-founder of the Junior Rangers program and has been coaching youth hockey for 25 years from Mite instructional to Midget Selects. Prior to the establishment of the Junior Rangers, Bill was the coaching director for Malden Youth Hockey for several years and also coached with the Middlesex Islander Mite Development program, the Lowell Junior Riverhawks, Central Mass Outlaws and North Shore Vipers. With the Junior Rangers, Bill was an assistant on the 1998 team which had 4 players who are now Hockey East commits. Bill has Level 4 USA Hockey coaching certification. Bill currently assists Junior Ranger Hockey Development Director Ryan Blair with Breakaway Total Hockey Training programs and has the Strength and Conditioning certifications: NASM-PES, TPI Level 1 and FMS Level 1.
10 Elite - Kevin Cyr is a level 3 USA hockey certified coach. He has coached from the Learn to Skate level up to Bantams in the past seven years. Kevin is currently the Vice President of Wilmington Youth Hockey and has been on the board of WYH for 5 years. He has been an assistant coach with the Boston Junior Ranger program for 4 years. His philosophy to coaching is to focus heavily on skill and fundamental development while at the same time promoting an enjoyable atmosphere, team building and overall love for the game.
08 Elite - Gary Morrow played at Don Bosco Technical High School in the Catholic Conference from 1992-1995. Over the years Gary has coached at the Learn to play, Learn to skate and Development hockey levels in Reading. He coached Mite hockey for five years and he was also the Reading Mite Hockey Director. His team won the Tri-State Mite AAA Championship in 2015. This will be Gary's 3rd year as Head Coach of our BJR 08 Elite team.
2007 Elite - Don Gartner - Don grew up playing hockey in Mentor, Ohio where he excelled throughout his entire youth hockey career capturing several state All Star titles as well as School Hall of Fame titles. Don joined the Cleveland Junior Barons (NAHL) and after several seasons with the team he became a coach for the team. He coached for two seasons with the Barons, one of which saw the team place 3rd in the nation. After a family move to the Merrimack Valley Don continued coaching at the HS level as well as several youth levels. This will be Don’s 3rd year as the 07E coach.
2007 Select - David Hughes
2006 Elite - Jack Blaeser is entering his 2nd year with the Junior Rangers after 8 years of coaching experience with the Islanders and Jr Warriors where he had impressive seasons throughout. A Boxford native, Jack played throughout his youth in Danvers and went on to co-captain the St. John's Varsity team. He then played his college years at Brown University. His philosophy builds on strong fundamentals, hard work, and he uses competitive sports as the ideal playground for developing life long skills and lessons for our youth.
06 Select - Todd Ebert
05 Elite -Pete McLaughlin was drafted by the Pittsburgh Penguins in 1991 and graduated from Belmont Hill in 1992. During his high school career, Belmont Hill won the ISL championship twice and the NEPSAC championship. While there, he earned All-league and All-New England honors. Peter matriculated to Harvard University where he won a Beanpot Championship as well as a trip to The Frozen Four. He was named All-Ivy during his senior year. After college, Pete played professionally for the Detroit Vipers in the IHL and Baton Rouge Kingfish of the ECHL. In addition to coaching youth hockey for the past six seasons, he has coached at both the collegiate (Franklin Pierce University) and high school (Contoocook Valley, NH) levels. Pete's Ranger team has impressively been ranked in the top 30 Nationwide the past 2 years.
05 Select - Gerry Sweeney - played junior hockey for the Bismarck Express in North Dakota before playing for the s'Hertogenbosch Red Eagles, Holland (Euro Hockey League) and the Fresno Falcons (PSHL). He has played under the tutelage of some well know coaches such as Keith Macadams (currently IIHF president of Turkish Hockey Federation), Eddie Gosselin and John Oliver.
Gerry spent 2 years as Head Coach of the JV UNH team and then went on to Coach the Jackson Hole Grizzlies Junior A Team in Wyoming.
He has been active as a junior hockey scout for the last 10 years with such teams as the Bismarck Bobcats, Texas Bramas, Jackson Hole Grizzlies and the Long Island Royals. He’s been an on ice instructor for Dynamic Skating/Max Hockey for 6 years.
Coach Sweeney always has successful teams here at the BJR on and off the ice. His teams have played in tournaments in Montreal, Quebec City, Toronto, Lake Placid, Brooklyn NY and various places around New England.
04 Elite - Dave Gatti graduated from the University of Massachusetts-Lowell (UML) with a B.S. in Management. While at UML, David skated as a forward with the River Hawks and was a captain his senior season. David played his minor hockey in his home town program (Montclair, NJ) and for the New Jersey Rockets. He went on to play two years at St. Joseph’s Regional HS (Montvale, NJ) where his team won the state championship both seasons. After St. Josephs, David spent three years attending, and playing for Northwood School where he played for Tom Fleming and was a captain his senior year. After UML, Dave went on to play in Nashville (ECHL) and Wichita (CHL) before joining the coaching ranks.
04 Select - Rob Castro, who resides in Andover, has been coaching for more than 9 years from Learn to Skate to the Bantam age level. For the last 4 years he has been a head coach in Andover Hockey where he was fortunate enough for the past 2 years to coach his Pee Wee Team on to being MA State champs. His coaching approach focuses on effort, skills development and team play to maximize player participation and the love for hockey.
03 Elite - Mike Marchese played at Arlington Catholic High School where he was captain, a two time Catholic Conference All Star, named a Hockey Night in Boston All-Scholastic and eclipsed the 100 point mark. Mike then played for both Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and Merrimack College where he graduated in 1991. Mike was on the board of Burlington Youth Hockey, ran the clinic program and has been coaching hockey for 20 plus years. This is his 4th year coaching the Boston Junior Rangers.
03 Select - Mike Tucker is in his 3rd year of coaching with the Boston Junior Rangers organization. He is a level 3 certified coach and has been coaching for more than 8 years. Mike has done various clinics coaching players from 6 to 18 years of age.
Goalie Coach - Ed Walsh and his coaching staff have been developing our goaltenders since 2009. He just finished his fourth full season as Northeastern University’s Division 1 volunteer assistant coach. Walsh primarily works with the Huskies’ goaltending corps. The Tewksbury, Massachusetts, native owns a formidable resume within the New England hockey ranks.
As a player, Walsh was a top-end goaltender and was named the defensive player of the year and goaltender of the year in Massachusetts. He also backstopped Team Massachusetts when it went on to claim the 1983 USA Championship. Walsh’s collegiate career was cut short at Salem State after he endured an injury that ended his career just after his freshman season.
For the last 26 years, Walsh has owned and operated the Ed Walsh Hockey Schools. Walsh has placed many of his players in the professional, collegiate and prep school ranks.