In May, 1997, parents of student/athlete hockey players from Shepard and Evergreen Park High Schools, met to explore the possibility of forming a new hockey club. The players had been part of a Club Team playing through Stagg H.S.
For the 1997-98 season, Stagg was able to attract enough students from their own school, requiring them to play as a "pure" team as mandated by AHAI rules for high school teams.
The organizers were able to recruit twelve interested players from Evergreen Park and Shepard. It was decided that a third school would need to join them and Richards High School in Oak Lawn was welcomed into the fold allowing the organizers to attract enough players to form the team.
The Worth Township High School Hockey Association was created in June of 1997 with the chosen team name of the "Cobras". Play commenced in October of 1997 with eighteen players, six from each school. The Cobras competed in the West Suburban Junior Varsity Hockey League.
The Cobras put together what could be called a "Cinderella" first season compiling a record of 17 wins with only 1 loss and the W.S.J.V.H.L.'s championship. In addition to their fine regular season, the team also captured a second place trophy from a highly competitive H.S. tournament in Detroit. During the course of the inaugural season, the club was complimented for its discipline, sportsmanship and team ethics by numerous parents, officials and fans. These fine young men displayed these traits wherever they went and today, these solid values are still stressed as a core part of what the club should be.
As preparations began for the 98-99 season, the club discovered that it would not be able to attract enough players from the three schools to field both a varsity and junior varsity team. It was felt that it was a priority to provide an appropriate level of competition for those players with a greater level of skill, as well as for those who were new to the sport or whose skill levels were more suited to J.V. competition.
With AHAI approval, Oak Lawn Community High School, who had students expressing an interest in playing, was welcomed into the association in September of 1998. With 28 players, we were able to enter a varsity team in the Illinois High School Hockey League as well as returning our J.V. team to W.S.J.V.H.L.
As the seasons went on, the Cobras continued to be successful. Stagg H.S. eventually dropped their team and players from there were welcomed back into the fold. Our player numbers fluctuate yearly, but with dedicated players, coaches, parents and administration, the club has maintained strong interest in the sport. While our goal is to field teams at both levels yearly, the main focus is in keeping the quality of our play and players at the highest level possible. This was evidenced for the 2002-03 season when our numbers allowed us only a J.V. team which competed in two leagues, gaining a third place finish in ISHL, and the championship of SIHCA (Southwest Ice Hockey Club Association).
Play continues today in both leagues at both levels. The Cobras have enjoyed success in both leagues with consecutive SIHCA championships for the varsity and final four placements in both leagues for both teams.
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