Bantam AAA Major

The Los Angeles Jr. Kings’ Bantam Major 2001 team has announced its coaching staff for the 2015-16 season.

Shawn Pitcher will serve as head coach, with Nelson Emerson and Jeff Turcotte assisting.

“We’re very lucky to have an individual like Nelson involved in our players’ developmental process,” said Pitcher. “His playing and coaching expertise speaks for itself and will be a tremendous asset for our kids as they continue to grow and mature, on and off the ice.”

A fixture in the Southern California coaching community since 1995, Pitcher has guided a number of his teams to promise on the local, regional and national stages.

Originally from Newfoundland, Pitcher spent 10 seasons coaching with the California Wave before joining the LA Hockey Club/LA Selects organization in 2007.

In 2005, he helped guide the Wave’s 16U AAA team to a silver-medal performance at the USA Hockey National Championships.

With the Selects, he led his Bantam AAA team to California Amateur Hockey Association (CAHA) and Pacific District championships in 2009 and a berth to nationals where the club won a bronze medal. He also led the Selects’ Bantam AAA club to bronze at nationals in 2012.

Pitcher, who played junior hockey in Ontario and minor-pro in Florida, guided the Jr. Kings’ Bantam Major team to a state and regional title in 2013-14. With the LA Selects in 2011-12, he’s the only coach in California hockey history to win the Elite AAA division championship of the famed Quebec International Pee Wee Tournament.

Emerson, a 14-year NHL veteran, played four years of NCAA Division I hockey at Bowling Green State University.

The Hamilton, Ontario, native is also the Kings’ director of player development and served as an assistant coach with the club from 2006-09.

One of the most prominent youth coaches in Southern California, Turcotte boasts am impressive resume that includes 16 CAHA state championships, eight Pacific District titles and six trips to the USA Hockey National Championships where he’s twice led his team to a gold medal.

Turcotte, who began his coaching career locally with the Pasadena Maple Leafs in 1995, also coached with the California Wave and LA Hockey/Club LA Selects programs before joining the Jr. Kings in 2012. Over the years, he’s helped develop a number of professional, NCAA and high-level junior standouts.

The head instructor of Turcotte Hockey School, the Montreal native played junior hockey in the U.S. and Canada, including three years in the Ontario Hockey League, before a pro career that took him to the Southern Hockey League and ECHL.