Former pro hockey player joins teaching staff


Photo Credit: Zane Kalemba

Zane Kalemba playing for his college hockey team.

by Githmie Goonatilleke, Copy Editor

Last year, Zane Kalemba was a goaltender for The Manchester Storm, an Elite Ice Hockey League (EIHL) team—this year Kalemba is working as a teacher’s assistant.

Kalemba started playing hockey at a young age, following the footsteps of his older brother who also played hockey. After playing hockey for Princeton University, he played professionally for six years in various leagues: Denmark, Slovakia, Poland and most recently in the EIHL. Kalemba also participated in an NHL training camp with the Buffalo Sabres.

Kalemba believes that playing for different leagues was a good experience for him because he was able to “see things that aren’t what we’re used to and open up your mind a bit

Although Kalemba enjoyed playing hockey professionally, he believes that becoming a teacher’s assistant is “a new step in the right direction for me, in terms of starting my new career.”

Kalemba heard about the teacher’s assistant position through the new hockey coach, Anthony Yelovich. Yelovich previously played as a forward for a Croatian team called Medvescak Zagreb in the Austrian Hockey League. The two met through working at Cutting Edge Ice Academy in Elmwood Park and started a company together called D-1 Developmental Group.

Kalemba chose to come to Glen Rock after visiting in April. He said, “I liked what I saw and I always had a passion for coaching and teaching.” Kalemba also knew both Mr. Billy Crispino and Mr. J.P. McCarten, the football coach and the track coach respectively, before coming here.

Kalemba is assisting in a geometry class, an English class and various science classes. After this year, Kalemba feels he will know what area he would want to teach in and continue to further his career in teaching.

In addition to being a teacher’s assistant, Kalemba will also assist in coaching the hockey team. Yelovich originally asked Kalemba to join him in coaching the hockey team but later found that there was an opening for a substitute teacher.

“I think he is a great role model, is very knowledgeable about the game and can convey messages to the players in a direct manner,” Yelovich said.

For the past seven years Kalemba has also had previous coaching experience with USA hockey and the Junior Olympics teams.

Kalemba believes that being both a teacher’s assistant and a hockey coach will be rewarding for him because he will be able “to see the kids during the day and not just on the ice but to see them in my classes as students and to be able to have an effect on their life”