Middletown, NJ – As we do every Memorial Day, we honor people who have given back to our country by representing our country overseas to protect our freedom. Here is our 2014 Memorial Day Feature, which is a look at the people who have represented and shaped the Titans Junior Program to become the program that it is today.
Back in 1998, the Junior Titans, under the direction of George Haviland Sr., George Haviland Jr., and Mike Haviland with the assistance of Ken Seltzer became the founding members of the Titans Organization after purchasing the dormant Somerset Chill Franchise in the Metropolitan Junior Hockey League. The Titans Franchise was established at the Youth Levels, with the highest level of Titans Hockey being the Junior Level, with the top Titans team being the MJHL Team.
The Titans Junior Program started strong right out of the gate winning a Bronze Medal at Nationals in 1998-1999 under George Jr., before Devils Youth Junoir Coach Randy Walker took the helm the following season. Walker followed up the original season run with another trip to Nationals. The success of the Titans Junior team led to the Titans being one of the founding members of the Atlantic Junior Hockey League which gave local players the opportunity to play at the Junior "A" level. After Walker's time as the head coach ended, the Titans brought in former ECHL player Stefan Rivard to lead the Titans last Junior "A" team.
After the Titan program took a leave from the AJHL, the club was left with the MJHL program which ended up under the direction of Dustin DePalma. The Titans MJHL program over the next six year period was historically one of the strongest in the MJHL competiing year-in and year-out for Division Championships and the Keegan Cup. In this period of having an MJHL team without an AJHL team, the team compiled a strong yearly winning percentage, among the MJHL's best and participated in Junior Nationals on two occasions, including a Bronze Medal in 2010.
In 2012, the Titans were voted back into the Atlantic Junior Hockey League and are now members of the Eastern Hockey League. The team is now under the leadership of new coach and former Titans MJHL Coach Brandon Kape who was elevated to the EHL job in the Spring of 2014. With Kape moving up to the EHL program, that left an opening at the MJHL level, which was filled by former Prep School star and Boston Bruins Draft Pick Gary Golczewski who has taken the reins of the Titans MJHL team. The strong core involved with the Junior program is a hallmark of the Titans organization under the direction of Owner George Haviland Jr., President Vinnie Dicks, and General Manager Randy Walker supporting the coaching staffs. The phenomenal backbone and support staff for the coaching staffs of the Titans Junior Program, sets the club up for a stable future.