My son is not a holdback or classified, he's a young 13 year old on a mostly older 2021 team. He's a bit big for his age but not overly so, he has struggled this year because of the huge disparity in height and weight but he knows it will even out eventually and in HS if he's good enough he will be playing with and against boys 2 and three years older. His focus now is his speed and stick work so when puberty finally does kick in he will once again be a strong dominant player.
It would be great if club teams were based on birth year...but they're not so we just make the best of it.
Similar situation for my son as well. Frustrating for the kid.
Not inclined to hold back because he does well in school and that is ultimately what will count most. However it would be really nice if the boy could enjoy the sport at which he works so hard and loves so much.
It's like yearning for that supermodel that would never give you the time of day.