RED DEER – The three hockey teams comprising Team Alberta North are set to open the Arctic Winter Games on Sunday.
The Arctic Winter Games are the world’s largest northern multi-sport and cultural event. This year’s edition is hosted in Wood Buffalo, January 29 to February 4. Hockey is being played in Fort McMurray and Conklin.
Team Alberta North is competing in each of the three hockey divisions: Junior Female, U15 Male and U18 Male. Hoping that home ice will prove to be an advantage, Team Alberta North faces off against Alaska, Northwest Territories, Nunavut and Yukon in each division. Round robin play begins Sunday, with medal rounds beginning February 2. Teams are competing for the gold ulu.
Sunday’s opening day action sees the U15 and U18 Male teams taking on Nunavut, while the Junior Female team plays Yukon.
“It’s always exciting to be heading into a short-term tournament, but to play in the Arctic Winter Games on home ice is a special opportunity,” said Blake Cosgrove, Team Alberta North’s Director of Operations. “It’s an honour to represent your province at an international tournament like this. Our athletes recognize that and are ready to showcase their level of compete and represent Alberta the best they can.”
To be eligible to participate in the Arctic Winter Games, athletes and coaches must reside in a community located north of the 55th parallel. The Junior Female team is comprised of athletes born in 2004-2009. The U15 Male team features athletes born in 2008-2009 and the U18 Male team has athletes born in 2005-2007. Male athletes playing AAA hockey this season were not eligible.
The schedule and results are available at awg2023.org. Games are being livestreamed on YouTube.
The Arctic Winter Games are a celebration of athletic completion, culture, friendship and cooperation between northern contingents.