NAHL Exclusive: Throwback Thursday
October 30, 2014
The NAHL is excited to launch a new feature on nahl.com entitled ‘Throwback Thursday.’ Now in its 39th year of operation, the NAHL has a long and accomplished list of alumni. Some have gone onto make playing hockey their careers in the NHL and in the minor leagues. Some have gone onto the NCAA, received their degrees and are now making an impact in the sport in other areas. Others have used their time spent playing in the NAHL to mold them into the businessmen, community leaders and industry builders that they are today. No matter the situation, their common bond is that they played junior hockey in the NAHL and it was an important step in molding them into who they are today.
Today, the featured alumni is Jason Deitsch. Deitsch has a long and productive history playing in the NAHL and beyond. He used his success to not only move onto the NCAA and professional hockey, but also to now take that knowledge and become a coach.
Deistch, who is originally from Cincinnati, Ohio, began his junior career with the Toledo Cherokee in the CSHL (now the NA3HL) in 1996-97. A year later he moved onto the NAHL to play for the Gaylord Grizzlies in 1997-98. Deitsch would play in the NAHL for four years, with his final two being the best with the Texas Tornado from 1999-01.
While with the Tornado, Deitsch finished 4th in the NAHL in scoring during the 1999-00 season with 69 points in 55 games played. During that season he was named to the All-NAHL 1st Team as a forward. A year later, a had 62 points in just 37 games played and led Texas to their first NAHL Robertson Cup Championship. In 155 career NAHL regular season games, Deitsch finished with 173 career points.
After four years in the NCAA at St. Norbert College, where he was also named an NCAA Division III All-American, help leading the team to three NCHA titles, he played nine years of professional hockey in the AHL, ECHL, CHL, UHL and Europe.
His first professional championship came with Kalamazoo of the UHL, in 2005-06, then with Cincinnati of the ECHL in 2007-08 and completing the accomplishment of back-to-back titles in 2008-09, with the Texas Brahmas of the CHL. In 2013, Deitsch completed his professional hockey career with the Allen Americans. As team captain, he led the team to the Miron Cup Championship in 2013 as champions of the Central Hockey League.
Just weeks after winning the title, Deistch announced his retirement and was named the head coach of the Dallas Jr. Stars of the NA3HL, where he is now coaching in his second season. Last year, Deitsch led the Jr. Stars to the South Division Playoff Championship and a berth in the NA3HL Silver Cup Championship Tournament.