IRONBOUND COACHES & STAFF
Sam Cheema - Hockey Director
Hockey Director and Head Coach, 19U, 16U & 14U
Sam was born and raised in London UK and ended his playing career whilst representing Great Britain internationally at the World Games in Kazakhstan, Sam started his coaching career while still playing with Guildford Flames Juniors and Imperial College, London.
In 2017, Sam moved to New York City and has progressed full time into coaching. Sam's coaching resume extends to skills development for mites through college athletes (training NCAA, NCDC and Junior Hockey Players) - with a heavy focus on athletic development. Outside of his team commitments, he works with athletes on a holistic view to training (recovery, nutrition, mobility, performance, and on-ice skill development). Sam also works with NY Blind Hockey Association and College Hockey Showcases (Sweden & Denmark) as the lead skills and skating educator.
Sam graduated from Kingston Business School, London, with a degree in communications planning and strategy.
Head Coach, 17U & 14U Elite
Head Coach, 12U
James is a native Canadian with a passion for the game and owns Cutting Edge Ice Academy in Elmwood Park, NJ. James has a deep passion for the game of hockey and the growth of player development. James has worked with leading skill coaches through his facility and provides opportunities for players to develop their game through innovative ways.
Assistant Coach, 19U
Ironbound is proud to announce the addition of Zac Gross to the Ironbound team. Gross brings a wealth of experience with him. He began his coaching career 10 years ago in the New Jersey Stars organization as the head coach of the Midget AA team and the NJ Kings Junior Tier 1 independent team. For the past seven years, he has coached his daughter Gabriela from Mite to Bantam with the Jersey City Capitals.
In addition to his coaching career, Gross played professional-level hockey in France and NCAA Division 1 at Quinnipiac University. Gross also played Juniors in the United States Hockey League (USHL) with the Rochester Mustangs, Major Juniors with the Wexford Raiders in Toronto and was a member of the United States 17U National Development Team.
Assistant Coach, 19U & 14U
Assistant Coach, 16U
Dave Barbosa is a returning coach for the girls' 12U Peewee A team. Dave played varsity high school hockey at Hudson Catholic in Jersey City and was in the 10 all-time scoring leaders in the state. He then went on to play Midget tier 1 with the Essex County Chiefs and from there onto Juniors Hockey with the NJ Golden Blades. In 1988 Dave was invited to try out for the Weyburn Red Wings for tier II Junior hockey in the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League. Dave played at Seton Hall University where he also played varsity baseball. In 1991 Dave began playing with the Newark Sabres off the M.A.S.H. League until 1999 when the league folded.
Dave graduated from Montclair University and from 1992 to present he has been a firefighter in Jersey City. Dave has been coaching youth hockey for the past 7 years.
Frankie Loftus - Skills Director
Frankie is a specialist skills coach with over 10 years of experience working with Olympians, USHL, Prep School, NCAA D1 and professional hockey players. He specializes in overspeed training and creativity.
Aerin Frankel - Goaltending Coach and College Mentor
Aerin started her hockey career in Westchester, NY. Since then she has gone on to be the prominent goaltender in the NCAA with the Northeastern Huskies. She was named to the U.S. Under-22 Women’s Select Team for the first time in August 2019 where she competed for Team USA against Canada at Lake Placid, New York.
Frankel was also selected to the U.S. Women’s National Team for the first time in December 2019 where she participated in the two-game Rivalry Series. The highlight came on Dec. 17, 2019, when Frankel backstopped the U.S. to a 2-1 victory against Team Canada during the second game of the Rivalry Series in Moncton, New Brunswick. Frankel stopped 27 of 28 shots faced in the victory.
Jeff Lovecchio - Head of Strength & Conditioning Programing
Jeff is a former professional player who spent over 10 years in the professional game. Jeff played NCAA D1 hockey at Western Michigan before signing with the Boston Bruins and joining their AHL affiliate in Providence. Now fully in the strength and conditioning space Jeff is one of the best trainers in the hockey world. Operating out of St Louis his clientele ranges from NHL - AAA players and is extremely well respected in hockey.
Andrew Coyne - Registrar & Administrator
Currently a Senior (Fall 2022) at Endicott College studying Sport Management. Along with Ironbound, Andrew works as a Tournament Director and Administrator for the National Girls Hockey League (NGHL).