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Q & A with Male U-16 POE Assistant Coaches David Anning & Jordan Wohlgemuth

by Ezra Ginsburg  |  May 7, 2020 9:30 am

The Program of Excellence (POE) is Hockey Manitoba’s Provincial Team program that offers developing high performance athletes the opportunity to represent their province at National and Inter-Provincial tournaments while providing a solid development path to the National and International stages.

The two assistant coaches for Male U-16 Team Manitoba this season are David Anning and Jordan Wohlgemuth. David Anning was the Head Coach of the Brandon Wheat Kings for three years (2016-2019) and was an Assistant Coach with the Wheat Kings for four years prior to that (2012-2016) and returns to the U-16 program after serving as Head Coach within the program (2011) as well as an Assistant Coach with Team West (2012 & 2013) in the former U-17 program. Jordan Wohlgemuth returns as an Assistant Coach of U-16 Team Manitoba after being an Assistant Coach of the U-16 team that earned a Silver medal at the 2019 WHL Cup.

David Anning

Age: 34
Hometown: Winnipeg, MB
Years Coaching: 14
Other teams coached: Bantam AAA Wheat Kings (2019-2020), Brandon Wheat Kings (WHL, 2012-2019), Steinbach Pistons (2012), Winnipeg Saints (MJHL, 2006-2008, 2010-2012), Dauphin Kings (MJHL, 2008-2010)

How would you describe yourself as a coach in terms of your style and outlook?

I consider myself a players coach who is demanding yet fair. I do have high expectations so I enjoy building relationships with players and learning about them as people and their mindset. I’ve always enjoyed the preparation that goes into preparing for a game and working to ensure that the players have all the necessary information to be successful. Attention to detail is very important to me and focusing on the details and the process is what I try to instil in my teams.

You were a Head Coach with the Brandon Wheat Kings for three years and an Assistant Coach with the Wheat Kings for another four years prior to that. How would you summarize your seven years with the Wheat Kings organization?

The WHL is an excellent league and I really enjoyed my time there. I was part of some very good teams, which is always special, and I was fortunate enough to coach in two league championships and the Memorial Cup, winning the WHL Championship in 2016. The athletes are great to work with and work incredibly hard to succeed. I was very impressed by their dedication and professionalism as they balanced a very heavy schedule. We had tremendous resources that allowed me to grow as a coach and get outside my comfort zone. I was also able to connect and learn from the many great coaches throughout the league.

With the COVID-19 pandemic shutting down the hockey season and with social distancing, how have you stay connected to the game and coaching/training?

As a scout with the Steinbach Pistons, we’ve had many calls and Zoom sessions leading up to the MJHL Draft. These have been great as you get to talk hockey and have in depth conversations about all the players. I’ve also had several conversations with different teams about the NHL Draft. It’s always fun to talk hockey and there are always takeaways from those conversations that you can put into action yourself, whether it be on the coaching side or the scouting side.

Who are some coaches that have really inspired you and had a big impact on you as a ooach/educator?

My dad coached both minor hockey and in the MJHL when I was growing up. Being around the rink so much and watching him definitely led to me becoming a coach. I always appreciated his approach and he taught me a lot, especially when it came to dealing with players. Paul Krueger was also a coach who had a big impact on me. He coached me in bantam and we connect regularly to this day.

What do you like to do in your spare time?

My partner Jen and I really enjoy travelling and have had the good fortune of visiting many different places around the world. We try and take an extended holiday every summer. We also really enjoy being outside. Running, biking, walking our dogs, golfing and working on the yard are regular activities for us.

Jordan Wohlgemuth

Age: 30
Hometown: Landmark, Manitoba
Years Coaching: 10
Other teams coached: Bantam AA (2012), U17 AAA (2013-2016), Bantam AAA (2017-current)

How would you describe yourself as a coach in terms of your style and outlook?

I want my athletes all to have the chance to get better. I try to find out what each player needs to be motivated and use it to help them become self motivated. I want to show a strong character behind the bench and at practice and have the teams reflect that. To me hockey is a lot of fun, but pushing players to get better on the ice and be better people is the true reward.

You were an Assistant Coach with last years Male U16 Team Manitoba that won Silver at the WHL Cup. What was your main coaching role (forwards, defence, special teams) with last years team at that tournament?

I was running the forward end of the bench. With an odd number of forwards we didn’t stress on match ups, but rather on keeping a rhythm of fresh legs on the ice.

With the COVID-19 pandemic shutting down the hockey season and with social distancing, how have you stay connected to the game and coaching/training?

When you’re coaching a major bantam age team your season only truly ends once the drafts are over. You field calls from scouts and players right until the draft. With the extra downtime I have been able to get a head start on summer reading. I am just about done “The Champions Mind” by Jim Afremow which is a great read for athletes and coaches who want to perform their best as much as possible.

Who are some coaches that have really inspired you and had a big impact on you as a coach/educator?

I have worked with Chris MacKinnon for 9 of the last 10 years. He has been involved with minor hockey for over 30 years and has taught me a lot. I have always admired how he has been able to get his teams to perform and buy in at the most important times. Getting better every day equals quality playoff performances. I have also really enjoyed working with Jeff Sveinson in the POE program. He brings a great energy every time we have a team function and some of the best team building sessions.

What do you like to do In your spare time?

My wife and I love to be outdoors with our dog whether its yard work at home or out hiking in the back country. This time of year I am usually watching playoff hockey, so to fill some of the time I have picked up throwing darts, and getting the golf swing back in order.

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