Eastern Hockey League (2013–)
|No. of teams||
19 — EHL|
12 — EHL Premier
EHL — New Hampshire Avalanche (2017–18)|
Premier — Boston Jr. Rangers (2017–18)
|Official website||EHL EHLP|
The Eastern Hockey League (EHL) is an American Tier III Junior ice hockey league with teams in the Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic United States. The EHL was officially announced on June 6, 2013, after the Atlantic Junior Hockey League welcomed six new members from the old Eastern Junior Hockey League and the AJHL re-branded itself under the EHL banner
The league prepares high school and college aged players for college and professional hockey. The league has hundreds of alumni that have gone on to play for NCAA colleges, various professional leagues, the CHL, and in Europe.
The Atlantic Junior Hockey League (AJHL or AtJHL) was part of the Atlantic Metropolitan Hockey League organization and was formed in 2003 with a stated goal to "meet the needs of the junior hockey community and the players it serves in the Eastern United States". The AJHL played its first season in 2003–04 with six teams that had previously played in the Junior B Metropolitan Junior Hockey League. On May 30, 2012 the AJHL announced that after nine years of being a part of the Atlantic Metropolitan Hockey League, the 12 AJHL ownership groups successfully became a stand-alone entity. After the split, the AJHL was managed and governed solely by the league owners.
In 2013, Tier III junior hockey leagues underwent a large reorganization that led to the dissolution of the Eastern Junior Hockey League and six of their former members joining the AJHL. Prior to the 2013–14 season, the AJHL re-branded to become the Eastern Hockey League (EHL). The six members who came from the EJHL were the Boston Bandits, Connecticut Oilers, New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs, New York Apple Core, Philadelphia Revolution, and the Valley Jr. Warriors.
In December 2014, the EHL announced the Connecticut Nighthawks as an expansion franchise to start in the 2015–16. They also announced the formation of the EHL-Elite Division and that eight teams would participate in the first season composed of the former Junior B teams for EHL organizations. The formation of the Elite Division led to the previous Junior A members to be placed in the EHL-Premier Division. In May 2015, the North American Hockey League, a Tier II league, announced that the New Jersey Junior Titans and the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights had been approved to elevate their organizations. After their promotion, the two EHL franchises went dormant.
In March 2016, the EHL announced that it was changing the name of the Elite Division to 19U Elite Division for the 2016–17 season and doubling in size by adding eight more teams, mostly the prospect teams from the Premier Division's South Conference teams. However, the 19U Elite Connecticut Nighthawks team were dropped from the schedule prior to their first season.
In December 2016, it was announced that six organizations (the Boston Bandits, Connecticut Nighthawks, Hartford Jr. Wolfpack, New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs, New Jersey Rockets, and the Northern Cyclones) would be leaving the EHL for the 2017–18 season for the United States Premier Hockey League (USPHL). The Bandits, Rockets, and Cyclones had already been announced as adding free-to-play teams in the USPHL's National Collegiate Development Conference (NCDC) for the 2017–18 season. All six organizations will add their Premier and Elite teams to the USPHL's Premier and Elite Divisions.
In February 2017, the EHL announced that they would expand to make up for the teams lost to the NCDC. The first team announced was New Hampshire Avalanche, an organization that previously only had youth teams. Next, it was announced the league would be adding the teams from the North American 3 Atlantic Hockey League (the former Metropolitan Junior Hockey League). The six teams from the NA3AHL were the Central Penn Panthers, Jersey Wildcats, Long Island Royals, Metro Fighting Moose (who left for the USHPL after the announcement), New Jersey Renegades, and the return of the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights. The league also listed the New Jersey 87's and Cape Cod-based Total Athletics. The one-year dormant New York Bobcats also returned as the Bobcats Royals as part of an organizational merger with the Long Island Jr. Royals of the NA3AHL. The Connecticut Oilers relocated from Norwalk to Hamden following the announcement that the ownership of the USHL's Cedar Rapids RoughRiders added a team called the Connecticut RoughRiders that will play out of the Oilers' former arena in Norwalk.
In March 2017, the EHL announced their new divisional structure for the 2017–18 season with 16 teams in the Premier and 17 in the Elite, although the Elite would decrease to 13 after the departures of the Connecticut OIlers Elite team, the Lehigh Valley Jr. Rebels, Long Island Royals, and Metro Moose. In May 2017, the league announced that they would reorganize their two-tier league with the top tier (formerly called the Premier) being only called the Eastern Hockey League and the lower tier being called the Eastern Hockey League Premier Division. The naming conventions were changed to put the emphasis on the top level league for college development.
- Relocated franchise
|EHL Premier Division|
|New England||Boston Junior Rangers||Breakaway Ice Center||Tewksbury, Massachusetts||2015|
|Connecticut Chiefs||Newington Arena||Newington, Connecticut||2018|
|New England Wolves||Merrill Fay Arena||Laconia, New Hampshire||2015|
|Valley Jr. Warriors||Haverhill Valley Forum||Haverhill, Massachusetts||2015|
|Vermont Lumberjacks||Leddy Park Arena||Burlington, Vermont||2015|
|Walpole Express||Rodman Arena||Walpole, Massachusetts||2015|
|Mid-Atlantic||Central Penn Panthers||Regency Ice Rink||Lancaster, Pennsylvania||2017|
|New Jersey 87's||Middletown Sports Complex||Middletown, New Jersey||2017|
|New Jersey Renegades||Flemington Ice Arena||Flemington, New Jersey||2017|
|Philadelphia Junior Flyers||Ice Line Quad Rinks||West Chester, Pennsylvania||2016|
|Philadelphia Little Flyers||IceWorks Skating Complex||Aston, Pennsylvania||2017|
|Philadelphia Revolution||Revolution Ice Gardens||Warwick Township, Pennsylvania||2016|
- North Charleston, South Carolina — Charleston Mariners were added to the EHL try-out notice as a 2018–19 team, but then later announced a 2019–20 launch.
- Binghamton Jr. Senators — AJHL, 2006–10. Relocated and became Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights.
- Boston Bandits — EHL, 2013–17. Joined the USPHL and its National Collegiate Development Conference.
- Boston Bulldogs — AJHL, 2004–12. Relocated and became Boston Junior Rangers.
- Brewster Bulldogs – 19U Elite, 2016–17. Joined from the Metropolitan Junior Hockey League. Junior organization merged with the New York Apple Core.
- Connecticut Nighthawks — EHL, 2015–17. Joined the USPHL and its National Collegiate Development Conference.
- Connecticut Oilers — EHL 2013–17 - franchise purchased and relocated to Newington and re-branded Connecticut Chiefs.
- Hartford Jr. Wolfpack — Charter member of the AJHL/EHL, 2003–17. Joined the USPHL Premier Division.
- Hudson Valley Eagles — AJHL, 2005–07.
- Jersey Wildcats — EHL Premier, 2017–18. Joined from the NA3AHL in 2017, not listed in 2018.
- Lehigh Valley Jr. Rebels — 19U Elite Division, 2016–17. Returned with an EHL team in 2018–19.
- Laconia Leafs — AJHL, 2005–13. Renamed New Hampshire Lakers but went dormant for 2013–14 season. Relocated to Waterville Valley, New Hampshire, in 2014 and returned as the New England Wolves.
- New Hampshire Junior Monarchs — EHL, 2013–17. Joined the USPHL Premier Division.
- New Jersey Junior Titans — Charter member of AJHL, 2003–04. AJHL team dormant from 2004 to 2012. Returned from 2012 to 2015. EHL team went dormant again in 2015 after organization joined the NAHL.
- New Jersey Rockets — AJHL/EHL, 2004–17. Joined the USPHL and its National Collegiate Development Conference.
- New York Bobcats — Charter member of AJHL, 2003–16. Was not listed for the 2016–17 season but returned in 2017 as the New York Bobcats Royals as part of their merge with the Long Island Jr. Royals. Not listed again for 2018–19.
- North Jersey Avalanche — Charter member of AJHL, 2003–04. Returned to only fielding a team in the Metropolitan Junior Hockey League in 2004.
- Northern Cyclones — AJHL/EHL, 2004–17. Joined the USPHL and its National Collegiate Development Conference.
- Portland Jr. Pirates — AJHL, 2004–12. Jr. Pirates organization purchased an Eastern Junior Hockey League franchise and joined the EJHL.
- Washington Jr. Nationals — Charter member of AJHL, 2003–14. Relocated and became Vermont Lumberjacks.
- Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights — AJHL/EHL, 2010–15. EHL team went dormant in 2015 after organization joined the NAHL. Returned in 2017.
EHL (formerly AJHL/EHL-Premier)
|Season||Regular season||Playoff||National Tournament result|
|2003–04||Hartford Jr. Wolfpack||Washington Jr. Nationals|
|2004–05||Boston Bulldogs||Boston Bulldogs|
|2005–06||New York Bobcats||New York Bobcats|
|2006–07||New York Bobcats||New York Bobcats||New York Bobcats lost Semifinal game vs. New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs (EJHL)|
Northern Cyclones lost Semifinal game vs. Bay State Breakers (EJHL)
|2007–08||New Jersey Rockets
Portland Jr. Pirates
|Northern Cyclones||Northern Cyclones lost Semifinal game vs. New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs (EJHL)|
New Jersey Rockets eliminated in Round Robin
|2008–09||Northern Cyclones||Northern Cyclones||Northern Cyclones and New York Bobcats eliminated in Round Robin|
|2009–10||Northern Cyclones||Walpole Express||Walpole Express and New York Bobcats eliminated in Round Robin|
|2010–11||Walpole Express||Walpole Express||Walpole Express lost Semifinal game vs. Helena Bighorns (NorPac)|
Northern Cyclones eliminated in Round Robin
|2011–12||Walpole Express||Walpole Express||No representatives sent to nationals|
|2012–13||Northern Cyclones||Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights||No representatives sent to nationals|
|2013–14||New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs||Northern Cyclones||Northern Cyclones lost Semifinal game vs. North Iowa Bulls (NA3HL)|
New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs eliminated in Round Robin
|2014–15||Philadelphia Little Flyers||Vacant
Connecticut Oilers wins vacated
|Northern Cyclones lost Div. 1 Championship game vs. North Iowa Bulls (NA3HL)|
|2015–16||Philadelphia Little Flyers||New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs||Tier III National Tournament not held|
|2016–17||Philadelphia Little Flyers||Philadelphia Junior Flyers|
|2017–18||Philadelphia Revolution||New Hampshire Avalanche||Tier III National Tournament not held|
EHLP (formerly -19U Elite)
|Season||Regular season||Playoff||National Tournament result|
|2015–16||New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs||Boston Jr. Rangers||Tier III National Tournament not held|
|2016–17||Vermont Lumberjacks||Philadelphia Revolution|
|2017–18||Boston Jr. Rangers||Boston Jr. Rangers||Tier III National Tournament not held|
- EHL (June 6, 2013). "Announcing The Eastern Hockey League". EasternHockeyLeague.org. Retrieved June 10, 2013.
- "EHL History". EHL. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
- "EHL Announces New 19U Elite Division For 2016-17". Eastern Hockey League. March 2, 2016.
- "USPHL Consolidating Tier III Junior Hockey in the East". USPHL. December 22, 2016.
- "USPHL Announces New Tuition Free Hockey Division for 2017-18 Season". Junior Hockey News. October 6, 2016.
- "2017-18 League Expansion". EHL. February 18, 2017.
- "CT RoughRiders Press Release". Cedar Rapids RoughRiders. March 6, 2017.
- "2017-18 Divisional Structure". EHL. March 23, 2017.
- "EHL Announces New Two-Tier System". EHL. May 5, 2017.
- "2007 Tier III Junior A Nationals". Pointstreak. Retrieved August 21, 2015.
- "2008 Tier III Junior A Nationals". Pointstreak. Retrieved August 21, 2015.
- "2009 Tier III Junior A Nationals". Pointstreak. Retrieved August 21, 2015.
- "2010 Tier III Junior A Nationals". Pointstreak. Retrieved August 21, 2015.
- "2011 Tier III Junior A Nationals". Pointstreak. Retrieved August 21, 2015.
- "2012 Tier III Nat. Championships". USA Hockey. Retrieved August 19, 2015.
- "2013 Tier III Nat. Championships". USA Hockey. Retrieved August 18, 2015.
- "2014 Tier III Nat. Championships". USA Hockey. Retrieved August 18, 2015.
- "2015 Tier III Junior Nat. Championships". USA Hockey. Retrieved September 17, 2015.