Hockey Operations

Todd Pococke

Head Coach/GM

Todd Pococke is starting his second season with the Jr. Blues after joining the staff at the beginning of the 2019-20 NAHL season. Prior to his time here in Springfield, he had spent six seasons as the Head Coach of the Florida Jr. Blades of the USPHL. Todd helped his team to two championships, one runner-up finish, and six consecutive playoff appearances while also serving as the Facility Director for the training facility within the Jr. Blades arena. In addition to his role with the Jr. Blades, Todd was also the Head of Strength and Conditioning for the Florida Everblades of the ECHL.

Todd has brought a fresh pair of eyes and ideas to our organization both on and off the ice. His experience as a winning coach while with the Jr. Blades has helped to bring back a winning culture to the most storied franchise in the NAHL.

Todd brings with him not only experience as a junior hockey coach, but experience as a player in the NAHL as well. Todd played for the St. Louis Bandits during their 2006-07 Robertson Cup Championship season alongside Jr. Blues alum and Head Scout Kyle O’Kane and future NHLer Patrick Maroon. Following his championship in St. Louis, Todd played four years at Ferris State University before graduating in 2011 and suited up in briefly for the Everblades (ECHL).

Todd and his wife Andrea are recently married (April 2018) and have just relocated to Springfield from Florida.

Jon Skarlis

Assistant Coach

Skarlis, a native of Waterloo, IA, comes to Springfield after serving as the Associate Head Coach of the 2023-24 Dineen Cup Champion South Shore Kings where he oversaw the defensemen and power play units. Prior to this season, Jon served as an Assistant Coach at Lawrence University for one season, and Head Coach of the South Shore Kings 18U team for two years.

Before starting his coaching journey, Jon played junior hockey for the Valley Jr. Warriors in the EHL and the Alexandria Blizzard and Wisconsin Whalers in the NA3HL. He went on to play NCAA Division III hockey at Bethel University where he graduated from in 2019.

We would like to wish a warm Jr. Blues welcome to Jon on his arrival here in Springfield!

Kyle O’Kane

Head Scout

Kyle O’Kane is entering his second season as Head Scout with the Jr. Blues. Kyle began coaching in 2015 and is currently the Hockey Director, 13U Head Coach, and 18U Assistant Coach for CarShield AAA. O’Kane’s playing career made stops in the NAHL, USHL, NCAA, SPHL, CHL, and ECHL.

Kyle played parts of three seasons in the NAHL: one here with the Jr. Blues and two with the St. Louis Bandits. He was a member of two Robertson Cup Championship teams with the Bandits and was named the Robertson Cup MVP in 2008. Kyle was drafted by the Lincoln Stars of the USHL in 2006 and appeared in 37 games for them. After his junior career ended, Kyle played four seasons for Western Michigan University and was part of their 2012 CCHA Championship team.

After the NCAA, Kyle played three professional seasons split between the SPHL, CHL, and ECHL. He had two stints with the Tulsa Oilers, one while the team was in the CHL and one while they were in the ECHL. He also played for the St. Charles Chill in the CHL and for the Louisiana IceGators in the SPHL.

Kyle now lives in St. Louis, MO with his wife, Katy. While a member of the Jr. Blues, Kyle attended high school at SHS during the 2005-06 season.

Chris Flaugher

St. Louis Scout

Chris grew up playing hockey for the Affton Americans in St. Louis, Mo. After youth hockey he played four years of junior hockey for the St. Louis Jr. Blues. After his junior hockey career ended, Chris went on to play NCAA DIII hockey for St. Mary’s University of MN.

Upon graduating from college, Chris returned back to St. Louis and began his coaching career as an assistant coach for the St. Louis Jr. Blues and was a part of 3 U.S.A Hockey Jr. B National Championship teams. After spending three years as an assistant coach, Chris was a head coach for the Affton Americans CSDHL hockey program coaching mostly at the U16 and U18 levels. In 2013 his U18 team won a USA Hockey National Championship.

After the 2013 season, Chris named the Head Coach and General Manger for the St. Louis Jr. Blues and would spend the next eight season in that position. Chris stepped down after the completion of the 2021 season to coach his son’s 2011 St. Louis Eagles CSDHL team.

Tyler Carlston

Minnesota Scout

Tyler grew up in Apple Valley, MN eventually playing high school hockey for the Eagles. Following his time at Apple Valley, Tyler spent two seasons playing ACHA hockey for Minnesota State Mankato before his departure to Florida. While in Florida Tyler spent seven seasons as Head or Assistant coach of the Florida Jr Blades. During his tenure the Jr Blades captured two National Championships, one runner up finish, and multiple division titles. Tyler also assisted with the Florida Everblades-ECHL strength and conditioning program along with training multiple professional players during summer on and off ice training.

Tyler has since returned home to Minnesota with his fiancé Stephanie and currently serves as an assistant coach at Apple Valley High School.

Steve Witt

Michigan Scout

Steve grew up in Midland, MI.  After high school hockey, Steve finished his junior career in the NAHL with the Saginaw Gears and went on to play 4 years at Ohio University.  Upon finishing graduate school, he started his 25 plus year career in the insurance and financial services industry where he is currently Senior Vice President at My Member Insurance and professor at Northwood University in Midland, MI,

Steve has coaching experience at the youth level for 23 years, winning 2 MAHA State Championships.  He completed his 7th year at Midland High, last season taking the Chemics to the Frozen Four and winning the Michigan High School Division 1 Coach of the Year.  He was also named Saginaw Valley Coach of the Year for the 22-23 season.  He spent 7 years with the Traverse City Northstars of the NAHL and the OHL’s Ottawa 67’s.  Steve also has spent over 15 years with the MAHA Selects / USA Hockey Development program.

Allan Dosan

Minnesota Scout

Trent Samuels-Thomas

East Coast Scout

Trent Samuels-Thomas had an incredibly successful Youth and Junior career growing up in the Hartford area.

As a player, Samuels-Thomas went on to play in the highest level of Canadian Junior hockey in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL). He played a season with the Drummondville Voltigeurs before returning to the United States to play in the USHL for The Des Moines Buccaneers and The Omaha Lancers.

Currently, Samuels-Thomas is the director of the midget program for the Connecticut Chiefs. He also coaches the U18 team and has shown his commitment to the club by leading player development within the Chiefs organization.

Since finishing his playing days, Samuels-Thomas is motivated to help the next generation of young hockey players attain their goals in the sport.