Coaching Staff & Contact

For all general inquiries please contact

Janice Yang


Janice Yang has led Connecticut Polar Bears teams to multiple New England Regional Championships and National Tournament appearances. She has coached from U12 to U19 and helped many players matriculate to the prep and college levels. 

As a player, Janice competed for Brown University (ECAC) where she led the team in goals her junior year and was tied for second in assists her senior year. She earned ECAC All-Academic honors in 2014 and 2015.

Before matriculating to Brown, Janice competed for Choate Rosemary Hall and the Connecticut Polar Bears. She helped take her Polar Bears teams to multiple silver and bronze medal finishes at the National Championships. A two-time New England Founders League Champion with Choate, Janice was also selected as a NEPSAC First Team All-Star her senior year. She was a four-year USA Hockey national camp participant.

​Janice is entering her eighth season as a coach with the Polar Bears. Including her time as a player, Janice has been involved with the organization for over 20 years.

Gwil Jones


​Gwil Jones has been coaching for 25+ years in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New York with a strong focus on player development. 

He has been with the Polar Bears since 2018 and has led his teams to multiple New England Regional Championships and National Tournament appearances. Prior to his time with the Polar Bears, Gwil's teams have won the New York State and Eastern Hockey Federation Championships. 

​He has coached and mentored dozens of players who have gone on to play prep and college hockey. Gwil is entering his seventh season as a coach with the Polar Bears.

Katie Savage


Katie Savage has coached at all age groups for the Polar Bears, from U12 to U19 at both the Tier I and Tier II levels. She serves as a key advisor guiding our players through the prep and college placement processes. 

A tremendous student athlete during her time at Amherst College, Katie was a member of the women's field hockey, ice hockey, and lacrosse teams. While at Amherst, Katie earned NESCAC All-Academic Team Selections consecutively from 2016 - 2019. In 2019, she was also the recipient of the prestigious Friends of Amherst Athletics Award. Katie formerly attended the Westminster School. At Westminster, she was a 2017-2018 ACHA All-American Scholar and was named team captain her senior season.

​She is entering her sixth year as a coach with the Polar Bears.

Jenny Guider


​Jenny Guider enters her second full season coaching the U16 Minor group. She has served as a skills instructor for several years at the Vault Summer Training program. ​

A rising junior on the Trinity Women's Ice Hockey team, Jenny was among her team's leading scorers last season. She is a Westminster School graduate and helped her team to a Founder's League title in the 2020 season. She was the 2020 Daly Award recipient awarded for demonstrating a wonderful breadth of athletic pursuits and an extraordinary commitment to the highest level of Westminster sports. Jenny, a former Polar Bear, wore the blue and white for 3 seasons.

Dave Rittenhouse


Dave Rittenhouse brings decades of experience to the Bears. Most recently, Dave has served as a coach at Colby College.

Prior to that, Dave served as Head Coach at the University of Tampa, Assistant for the Tampa Bay Jr Lightning, Assistant Coach for the Tampa Scorpions, and systems/video coach for the CT Polar Bears from 2015-2024.

Dave is in the details and has immense knowledge of the game. His goals are players improvement year over year, helping players to understand the game, increase their skill, learn to correct their mistakes, play with confidence, become a good teammate, represent themselves properly on and off the ice, and play the game the right way. 

Allison Koenig


Allison Koenig has been a coach and administrator with the CT Polar Bears for 3 seasons. She has coached many ages that range from U12 to U16 and specializes in defensive concepts and training and works heavily with our defensive cores. A native of Wisconsin, Koenig played for the Milwaukee Junior Admirals and served as team captain for several seasons. 

Koenig was a member of the United States Rugby National program at both the U18 and U22 levels. She was also a member of the Quinnipiac Women's Rugby team and served as team captain from 2019 to 2022. 

Melissa Hawkins


​Melissa Hawkins has been coaching for the past 20 years throughout Connecticut and New York with a strong focus on player development. 

She has worked with many tremendous athletes while coaching the Sound Shore Warriors, Mid Fairfield Stars and Brewster Bulldogs. She has led teams to multiple New England Regional Championships and National Tournament appearances.

She has also coached and mentored dozens of players who have gone on to play prep and college hockey. To further her goal to develop young players, Melissa also started her own hockey company called Hawkins Hockey. Through Hawkins Hockey, she runs camps/clinics and attends spring and summer tournaments. 

As a player, Melissa competed for Manhattanville College (ECAC East) where she was an assistant captain from sophomore year through graduation. 

Angelica Mushenko


Angelica Mushenko enters her first season coaching the U16 Minor group.

Angelica was a former captain of the Trinity women's hockey team where she played from 2018 to 2022.

Before attending Trinity and earning a degree in Neuroscience, Angelica formerly attended Pomfret School where she served as a 2-year captain. She also played club hockey for the East Coast Wizards and helped her teams to multiple medal finishes at the National Championships.

Kyle Knopp


Kyle Knopp has more than 33 years of hockey experience and has played, coached, or worked at every level — including two seasons in the Public Relations Department for the Detroit Red Wings (NHL).

Kyle previously coached with ACHA Saginaw Valley State University, and as Video Coach and Hockey Ops for the OHL's Saginaw Spirit. He also worked as a Head Instructor for the touring hockey camp Simply Defense and with the Chesapeake Bay Lightning women's hockey organization and various high school teams in the D.C./Maryland/Virginia area.

Kyle will be joining the Connecticut Polar Bears after spending the last two seasons behind the bench as head coach for the Washington Pride U14 Minor team. With the Minors, Kyle led the team to back-to-back most wins in team history and two tournament championships. 

Paula Dady


Paula Dady joins the Polar Bears as the Trumbull/St. Joes Girls Varsity High School ice hockey coach for the past 14 years. In her tenure, Paula was voted Coach of the year 4 times and has led her team to the state tournament numerous seasons.

As a player, Paula had a successful athletic career while attending Hamilton College. She was a dual sport athlete starring in hockey and soccer for all 4 years. As a member of the women's hockey team, Paula was named as a NESCAC 1st Team All-Star, 100 Point Club Member, and was named Captain her junior & senior years.

Paula graduated from Hamilton with a double major in Economics and Studio Art. Prior to matriculating to Hamilton, Paula attended The Taft School.

Lloyd Jacques


Lloyd Jacques joins the Polar Bears for his first season. He is currently coaching at Fairfield University and he had a previous stint with the Quinnipiac University club program. Lloyd has been coaching for close to 10 years at the collegiate and youth levels.

As a player, Lloyd played college club hockey at University of New Haven and Southern Connecticut State University. He played for Lyman Hall High school 2005 to 2009 where he earned All-Conference honors in 2008 and 2009. 

Cait Burns


Cait Burns has over 5 years of coaching experience and enters her first season with the Bears.

Cait previously served as the head coach for the Immaculate High School girl's club. She has also specialized in skills development for Flite hockey camp.

Cait is a former Polar Bear and competed for the club for over 10 years. She helped bring her teams to multiple Nationals and Regionals tournaments. She also played field hockey for Danbury High School and was a 2x FCIAC First Team Member.

Carl Larosa


The CT Native was a standout netminder for the Northwestern Ice Hawks and Watertown-Pomperaug High School Co-op. He went on to backstop the Bryant University Bulldogs in the ACHA II and was the three-year starter for the team.

Carl has served as instructor with the Blue Chip Selects Hockey Program, working with players of all ages in both goalie and player development skill sessions. Carl has a passion for teaching and is excited to coach with the Polar Bears this upcoming season. 

Katelyn Pantera


Katelyn Pantera has coached players across all age groups for the Polar Bears since her graduation in 2019.

She graduated from Choate Rosemary Hall and went on to play at Amherst College.

The Connecticut Native and former Polar Bear studied Psychology at Amherst and works as a nurse outside of hockey

Patrick Cooper


Patrick Cooper has been coaching high school hockey for close to 20 years. 2023 marked his inaugural year as Head Coach for St. Joseph High School, CIAC Division 1, Boys Ice Hockey after 18 seasons as the Assistant Coach for Trumbull High School (2012 D2 CIAC State Champions).

Patrick is the current Director of Hockey programming at The Rinks at Shelton. Coach Coop has worked with all ages of players from LTP programs to 19U over the last 10 years, and holds a Level 4 USA Hockey certification. Patrick is also a certified Power Edge Pro (PEP) instructor and a CAN/AM Hockey instructor.  

Coach Coop’s philosophy centers around player development and creating an environment where players are able to play with confidence and push beyond where they’re comfortable to foster growth. Patrick is looking forward to joining the CT Polar Bears players and coaching staff for his first season.

Pat Thompson


Pat Thompson has been coaching youth hockey for 10 years across all ages and levels. He brings a wealth of knowledge and passion for the game.

The CT Native played for Hamden Hall and went on to play college hockey at SCSU in the ACHA DII.

Pat now lives in Milford with his wife Karen and 3 kids, Ryan (2008), Claire (2011) and Nolan (2013) who all play hockey. He also coaches lacrosse with the Milford Mustangs.

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