Junior A leagues and teams provide a competitive
opportunity for the elite player in this age group on a more localized
— USA Hockey
Junior A hockey players range in age from 16 through 20. Some are still in high
school, while others work or take college courses part-time. They pay tuition
to play the sport they love, with the goal of moving up--either to higher tier Junior A
hockey, minor league hockey, or college hockey.
Hockey players typically move up through the age brackets in USA hockey until
they reach the Midget, or High School, level. Once they are 16 (or in some
cases, 15) they can choose to enroll in Junior Hockey programs.
Over the past decade college teams have increasingly turned to Junior Hockey
programs to recruit players. As a result, college teams are now composed of
older, more experienced players.