The Glen Echo

From the blue paint to bench

Glen+Rock+Varsity+Coaching+staff+poses+with+the+State+Championship%2C+after+an+8-1+victory+over+Wall+Township.++From+left+to+right+Sergio+Fernandez%2C+Zane+Kalemba%2C+Anthony+Yelovich%2C+Frank+Del+Tuffo%2C+and+Dillon+Driver.
Glen Rock Varsity Coaching staff poses with the State Championship, after an 8-1 victory over Wall Township.  From left to right Sergio Fernandez, Zane Kalemba, Anthony Yelovich, Frank Del Tuffo, and Dillon Driver.

Glen Rock Varsity Coaching staff poses with the State Championship, after an 8-1 victory over Wall Township. From left to right Sergio Fernandez, Zane Kalemba, Anthony Yelovich, Frank Del Tuffo, and Dillon Driver.

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Anthony Yelovich

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Anthony Yelovich

Glen Rock Varsity Coaching staff poses with the State Championship, after an 8-1 victory over Wall Township. From left to right Sergio Fernandez, Zane Kalemba, Anthony Yelovich, Frank Del Tuffo, and Dillon Driver.

by Jared Brassil, Staff Writer

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In his college hockey years, Zane Kalemba assistant varsity hockey coach, was playing in a D1 summer league.  In the finals, varsity hockey coach Anthony Yelovich, was pushed down on a breakaway and lifted it under the bar.  Yelovich would end up running into Zane by accident.  Zane responded by getting up and trying to rip Yelovich’s helmet off and fight him, the two were eventually separated.

Now, six years later, they coach together at Glen Rock High School.

Zane Kalemba is one of the assistant coaches at Glen Rock and an emergency goalie for the New Jersey Devils.

An emergency goalie is a new rule for the NHL.  It states that every home team must designate a specific goalie to bring their bags to the rink, put in the locker room, then watch the game in the stands.  If any goalie, on either team, gets injured, he would go dress while the game is going on.

“It’s a new rule because a lot of goalies have been getting hurt and teams are left without a backup for a good amount of time,” Zane said.

Zane had already been contacted by the Devils organization about trying out for their team, then when the rule was implemented, he tried out and made the team.

Zane’s journey to where he is today started when he was very young.

The first time Zane started playing hockey was when he was two-years-old, practicing with his brother at South Mountain Arena, located in West Orange.  When Zane grew old enough to play he joined the McKay Park Mavericks, which was a youth hockey program run out of Englewood at McKay Park.

Zane started his hockey career with the McKay Park Mavericks, when he became a Mite he joined the Devil’s Youth program out of South Mountain.

In 2006, Zane attended Princeton University, playing hockey as a freshman all the way through to his senior year.  Once the hockey season concluded during his senior year, Zane played with the Norfolk Admirals of the AHL.  The AHL is the minor league right under the NHL.

The next year Zane bounced around to seven different teams, playing with teams from the AHL to other smaller leagues across the country.  Most notable was his time with the Binghamton Senators and skating at the Buffalo Sabres training camp.

Zane has seen success in his career as both a player and a coach.

As a player Zane won Bantam Nationals with Devils Youth, a 2001 state championship with Bergen Catholic.  With Princeton he won the Ivy and ECAC championships in 2008.  As a coach, Zane helped coach the Glen Rock Hockey team to their first ever state title.

This is Zane’s second year coaching at Glen Rock.  He came in when previous varsity coach Sergio Fernandez stepped down, and Anthony Yelovich took over as head coach.

For Zane the biggest difference between playing hockey and coaching hockey is control.

You can’t really go out there and make anything happen, which is frustrating at times.  As a goalie I was on the ice the whole game and I had at least the slightest control over the game, but as a coach you can match lines as much as you can, you have to rely on your teammates a little more than you would if you’re playing.”

— Zane Kalemba

“You have a smaller control over the game,” Zane said. “You can’t really go out there and make anything happen, which is frustrating at times.  As a goalie I was on the ice the whole game and I had at least the slightest control over the game, but as a coach you can match lines as much as you can, you have to rely on your teammates a little more than you would if you’re playing.”

While Zane may still be getting used to life behind the bench, coach Yelovich says that Zane has become a huge asset for Glen Rock hockey.

“Zane has a ton of experience and he sees the game differently,” Yelovich said. “I am a player, he is a goalie, so he thinks the game a lot differently.  When we have discussions about what we need to do to make adjustments it jogs my memory because he sees the game a little different.”

Dillon Driver, who is currently an assistant coach with Glen Rock varsity hockey, came over when coach Yelovich joined as head coach.  

“[He brings] energy, excitement, and honestly knowledge that some of us don’t have,” Driver said.

“[He brings] energy, excitement, and honestly knowledge that some of us don’t have.””

— Dillon Driver

Having played through high school and college hockey, Zane agrees that he takes a new approach to coaching, unlike the other coaches.  Zane says he knows what it takes to win and be successful.

Even though he was approached by a couple colleges to coach, he turned them down. He said that they were “so focused on recruitment and not player development.”

To focus on player development, Zane founded Zero Klub Hockey, the name for which was made by a goalie playing for Vermont.  Zero Klub Hockey, or Zero K hockey, has become more than just a developmental program.  While he still works one-on-one and in group sessions on the ice, Zero Klub Hockey has become a family advisory group for D1 goalies.

In Zane’s young career as both a coach and a professional, Zane does not like to think about the future.

“I try not to get to far ahead of myself and take it one year at a time and one day at a time.  Hockey mentality is one shift at a time,” Zane said. “Who knows what the future will bring.”

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