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Hockey Alberta university spotlight

Products of the Hockey Alberta system etched their names in the record books on both sides of the border this weekend.

Calgary’s Mount Royal University Cougars made history as the Women’s Hockey program claimed the school’s first ever USPORTS National Championship. The Cougars edged the Concordia Stingers in a 4-3 overtime thriller after tying it up with a buzzer-beating goal late in the third.

Lead by past Team Alberta Coach, Scott Rivett, 15 Alberta built athletes celebrated the win, including: Sydney Benko, Abbey Borbandy, Kaia Borbandy, Mackenzie Butz, Athena Hauck, Jordyn Hutt, Lyndsey Janes, Aliya Jomha, Courtney Kollman, Mackenzie Loupelle, Kaitlyn Ross, Taylor Sawka, Alexandria Spence, Breanne Trotter and Tianna Yaremko. Ross was also named the Championship Most Valuable Player.

Last week, former Alberta Female Hockey League forward, Shae Demale (Saint Mary’s University – Halifax) was named to the USPORTS Second Team All-Canadians. Keana McKibbin (University of Windsor) and Cassidy Rhodes (University of British Columbia) were selected to the All-Rookie Team.

South of the border, Team Alberta alum, Sarah Wozniewicz (2019 Canada Winter Games and 2019 National Women’s Under-18 Championship), helped Wisconsin University claim their seventh NCAA Championship. In a one goal game, Wisconsin upset defending champions, Ohio State University.

Two other Team Alberta alum competed in the coveted NCAA Frozen Four Championship, Emerson Jarvis (Ohio State) and Taze Thompson (Northeastern University).

Danielle Serdachny, of Colgate University, is the first Albertan to be selected as a top-three finalist for the Patti Kazmaier Award as the top women’s player in NCAA Division 1 hockey. Serdachny was selected as the runner-up, but nonetheless she posted a decorated season to conclude her university career. The Edmonton native broke program records on her way to being named the ECAC Forward of the Year and Player of the Year, as well was selected to the All-American First Team.


USPORTS Men’s Hockey

University of Calgary’s Mark Howell was named the Father George Kehoe Memorial Award recipient for the Fox40 Coach of the Year. While three Albertans were named to the All-Rookie Team, Eric Van Impe (Western University), Jake Lee (University of British Columbia) and Jakin Smallwood (University of Alberta).

University of Alberta battled their way to the championship game, but ultimately fell to the University of New Brunswick 3-0, to finish the season second overall.

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National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

Each year, September 30 marks the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.

The day honours the children who never returned home and survivors of residential schools, as well as their families and communities. Public commemoration of the tragic and painful history and ongoing impacts of residential schools is a vital component of the reconciliation process.

Both the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation and Orange Shirt Day take place on September 30.

Orange Shirt Day is an Indigenous-led grassroots commemorative day intended to raise awareness of the individual, family and community inter-generational impacts of residential schools, and to promote the concept of “Every Child Matters”. The orange shirt is a symbol of the stripping away of culture, freedom and self-esteem experienced by Indigenous children over generations.

On September 30, we encourage all Canadians to wear orange to honour the thousands of Survivors of residential schools.

MORE INFORMATION >

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Image: Gatorade logo with female Team Alberta player


Team Alberta Fall Camp set for Edmonton

EDMONTON – Twenty-eight athletes are attending the Team Alberta Female Fall Camp, September 22-24 in Edmonton.

Three goaltenders, nine defence and 16 forwards are coming to camp with the goal of earning a sport on the team that is competing at the National Women’s Under-18 Championship.

Team Alberta Under-18 Female Fall Camp Invites >

Fall Camp allows the athletes to be evaluated in on and off-ice sessions and includes games against three USports women’s teams.

Game one is scheduled for Friday at 7 pm the Downtown Community Arena against MacEwan University Gryphons. Games two and three are at the Clare Drake Arena. On Saturday at 2 pm, the University of Alberta Pandas provide the opposition, and on Sunday at 12:30 pm, the team faces the University of Calgary Dinos.

Following the camp, athletes continue to be evaluated with their club teams.

Team Alberta Female, fuelled by Gatorade, takes the ice at the National Women’s Under-18 Championship in Dawson Creek, BC, November 5-11.

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Image: Brett Kramers on far left


When Connection Meets Opportunity

One might say the coaching career of Brett Kramers has been fast-tracked. But his dedication to the game, hard work and willingness to learn would say otherwise.

Growing up as a goaltender with South Side Athletic Club, it was a natural transition for Kramers when he started his coaching journey at 18 as a goaltender coach with the club.

Just five seasons later, Kramers is preparing for his first season as the head coach of the U17 AAA Fort Saskatchewan South Fort Chev Rangers in the Alberta Elite Hockey League (AEHL).

“The short time I’ve been involved in the AEHL has been amazing, and I expect nothing less in the coming month,” said Kramers. “The resources that the coaches have at their fingertips is crazy to me. There’s not enough time in the day to list all the resources we have as coaches and all the connections that I’ve already made.”

The 23-year-old university student, is joining the league as the youngest bench boss in the AEHL.

“I’ve always looked at my age as more of a strength than a weakness,” said Kramers. “I know what the players are going through, not just in hockey, but in school and life, so it’s given me the unique ability to connect with them.”

Kramers has surrounded himself with a support system of coaches who are looking to help him grow.

“I’ve been fortunate to coach with some really helpful people. Especially when I was just starting out, I had people show me what it means to be a coach and show me the sides of the game that I didn’t know,” said Kramers. “Now, one of the things I’ve learned with Hockey Alberta is the best coaches are the best thieves in a sense where you’re always taking pieces that you like from other coaches to do it your way.”

Derrick Martin, an assistant coach with Team Alberta Male, and Zenith Komarniski, a former pro turned coach in Fort Saskatchewan, are two fellow Spring Showcase coaches who Kramers now calls mentors.

“Derrick and Zenith have been so helpful to me and in different ways,” said Kramer. “Derrick is one of the people who has given me the inspiration to take coaching seriously. The work he puts in is truly second to none and it’s inspired me to have the same work ethic and the same compete level when it comes to being a better coach and person for the kids.”

The connection to Komarniski developed through the 2022 Prospects Cup, when Kramers debuted in the Spring Showcase program as an assistant coach.

“Not only has Zenith shared what he’s learned as a coach, but also what he’s experienced as a professional, and to someone like me who aspires to be at that level someday, it’s something I keep close to my heart,” said Kramers.

In 2023, Kramers returned as an assistant coach at the Alberta Cup, once again along side Komarniski on the bench.

“I’ve been able to take so many key tools from the Showcase and the events I’ve done with Hockey Alberta and translate them to my winter season,” said Kramers. “It’s different from short-term to long-term competition. The short-term, you’re looking for the team that’s going to come together super quick, build trust, have vulnerability and build connections right away and that’s one of the biggest things I’ve taken back to my winter team.”

As Kramers moves through his career, he credits Hockey Alberta programming and connections as a pivotal part of his growth.

“Hockey Alberta has done so much for me in just the two years I’ve been involved in the program. I wouldn’t be where I am without the programs they’ve offered,” said Kramers. “I’ve been able to see a lot of things at such a young age. Every time I go to a Hockey Alberta event, I feel like I’m the youngest guy there and I leave with a notepad full of new things to try or new philosophies.”

Through his opportunities with Hockey Alberta, lived coaching experience, mentors, podcasts and professional development he participates in, Kramers has started to craft his own coaching philosophy.

“It’s the messages and values I’ve been able to take from all the connections I’ve made whether it be through the South Side Athletic Club, my time with Fort Saskatchewan now or through the events I’ve done with Hockey Alberta,” said Kramers. “It’s finding the character kids – kids who are going to work for you on the ice and work for themselves most importantly. But what’s really important to me is to be able to see that a kid is going to be just as good of a person away from the rink and represent themselves with class, as much as they are going to bring the same mindset into the rink.”

Like any coach, his philosophy is ever-evolving as Kramers continues to learn.

“The biggest thing that keeps me coming back to Hockey Alberta events is seeing the success that other coaches have had,” said Kramers. “To see the progression that Hockey Alberta is able to make whether it’s to Hockey Canada, to junior or to the NHL. The more I come back, the more I learn, I’m putting myself in the right direction as a coach of where I want to go in the future.”

Hockey Alberta’s Spring Showcase events - Alberta Cup, Alberta Challenge and Prospects Cup - serve as identification and development programs for the top coaches, players, medical personnel and administrators in the Hockey Alberta system. Coach, Director of Operations and Trainer applications for all three events open October 2 on the Hockey Alberta and Spring Showcase websites. All interested candidates are encouraged to apply.

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Image: four female Hockey Alberta coaches


Female Coach Development Network

RED DEER – Hockey Alberta is excited to launch the Female Coach Development Network in the 2023-24 season.

The new pilot program is for female coaches across the province to connect and learn from each other. The network is free to join and open to coaches at all levels and ages that are currently coaching or coached in the 2022-23 season.

Coaches who join the network have access to mentors and resources to learn and help navigate their seasons. One call is scheduled each month, from October-February, with professional development and the opportunity to discuss situations coaches are going through.

“Hockey Alberta is prioritizing supporting women in the game,” said Danielle Wheeler, Hockey Alberta’s Female Hockey Mentor. “We recognize we need to support our female coaches throughout the season and the Female Coach Development Network gives those coaches a safe space to share what they’re going through, learn and network with other coaches.”

To ensure everyone’s voice is heard, the network is divided by two groups – North and South. Ally Bendfeld is leading the South group, while Wheeler leads the North.

Bendfeld works as an assistant coach with the Olds College Broncos (ACAC). In 2023, she travelled to the Canada Winter Games as an assistant coach with Team Alberta Female. Over the years she’s been involved in many Team Alberta programs, including as an assistant coach with the gold medal winning 2019 Canada Winter Games team and a Coach Mentor at the Alberta Challenge.

Wheeler is a former professional player and played NCAA Division I for Mercyhurst University. Coupled with her work with Hockey Alberta, she has coached in the Alberta Challenge and at her local minor levels. A lifelong student of the game, she is currently coaching Male U15 AA.

For any questions about the Female Coach Development Network, Wheeler can be reached at [email protected].

Join the Female Coach Development Network >


FEMALE-ONLY COACH CLINICS

Hockey Alberta is hosting female-only coach clinics in Edmonton and Calgary this season.

Edmonton is hosting a Coach 2 course on October 28. Registration is now open.

Register >

Calgary is hosting three clinics. Coach 1 is scheduled for October 15, Coach 2 on October 22 and Checking Skills on October 29. Watch for registration to open.

Female-only coach clinics provide an inclusive environment to all females to learn the game and become certified in the necessary clinics.

For information on the Edmonton clinic, contact Danielle Wheeler ([email protected]) and for information on the Calgary clinics, contact Darcy Steen ([email protected]).

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Image: Hockey Alberta coaches and players


Professional Development Coach Speaker Series Scheduled for this Fall

RED DEER – The 2023-24 season is here and Hockey Alberta is offering a professional development speaker series to coaches.

Targeted for Alberta’s elite coaches, presenters include Kyle McLaughlin, Topher Scott and Ryan Aasman. Each presentation is designed to aid coaches in planning and developing their season, to help set the team up for a year of success.

Presentations take place on September 25, October 16, 23 and November 13 at 7 P.M., register for each session below.


Creating a Comprehensive Seasonal Plan – Kyle McLaughlin

September 25

McLaughlin captained St. Cloud State University of the NCAA Division I, before dedicating his time to coaching. For over a decade, he has coached minor hockey teams in the Canmore Minor Hockey Association and Bow Valley Minor Hockey Association, while working with the Canmore Eagles of the AJHL as an assistant coach and director of skill development. In 2018, he was recognized as Hockey Alberta’s Coach of the Year.

Register >


Creating a Culture Conducive for Player Development – Topher Scott

October 16

Scott is the Director of Hockey Operations at the University of Michigan of the NCAA. A former player and coach at Cornell University, Scott has worked in a variety of different roles and levels of hockey, specifically on leadership and building culture. A founder of The Hockey Think Tank, he collaborates with coaches and leaders in the game across North America.

Register >


Player Habits that Translate to Junior Hockey – Ryan Aasman

Aasman is an assistant coach with the Lethbridge Hurricanes. Working multiple years in grassroots hockey, at the Alberta Elite Hockey League and now in the WHL, Aasman brings his player and coaching experience to the forefront when discussing Player Habits that Translate to Junior Hockey.

October 23

Register >


Designing Development Focused Practices – Kyle McLaughlin

McLaughlin returns to discuss Designing Development Focused Practices, combining his experience in the minor and junior ranks to get the most out of practice time.

November 13

Register >


The presentations will be recorded and posted on Hockey Alberta’s Youtube channel following the conclusion of the series.

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Hockey Alberta’s Statement on Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

The past two years have seen Hockey Alberta undertake several initiatives and engage numerous individuals to help us better understand the challenges faced by participants in our sport related to Equity, Diversity and Inclusion.

Hockey Alberta hosted an Indigenous Hockey Summit in August 2021, and then created and hosted the inaugural 11.4 Awareness Day in 2022 with a focus on maltreatment and Hockey Canada’s new rule 11.4.

A key part of the work undertaken by Hockey Alberta has been through the Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Committee. This committee is comprised of diverse individuals with a wide range of life and athletic experiences. Members of the committee attended the Hockey Alberta Member Summit in June 2022, where they discussed the findings of the organization’s Equity, Diversity and Inclusion survey.

EDI COMMITTEE AND SURVEY REPORTS >

The information gathered through these various forums has included examples of behaviors that have no place in hockey. We have heard real examples and collected data that shows that we have Equity, Diversity and Inclusion issues in hockey. It has reinforced that we have work to do to provide a safe environment and ensure that all participants have a positive experience in our sport.

EQUITY, DIVERSITY, INCLUSION AT HOCKEY ALBERTA >

The next stage in the process starts today with Hockey Alberta’s Statement on Equity, Diversity and Inclusion:

Hockey Alberta’s Statement on Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

Hockey Alberta acknowledges there are systemic challenges in our sport involving equity, diversity, and inclusion. All forms of discrimination and maltreatment are unacceptable and must be removed.

Hockey Alberta is committed to removing the challenges to ensure we are:

  • Creating a safe sport environment free of racism, discrimination, harassment and bullying for all participants.

  • Acting decisively to improve equity, diversity and inclusion so that our sport is accessible to all.

  • Nurturing a positive hockey culture where inclusiveness and belonging are expectations, not options.

This statement provides the framework for Hockey Alberta to address Equity, Diversity and Inclusion issues in our sport. Hockey Alberta will ensure sanctioned activities are accessible, inclusive and safe for participants of all abilities, backgrounds, and interests, and Hockey Alberta will eliminate maltreatment, bullying and harassment from the game.

Specifically, our commitments are shown in our actions. In 2023-24, Hockey Alberta will add new staff resources to our operational team to support our Equity, Diversity and Inclusion committee, activate on our objectives, and support our Members, as Hockey Alberta works to nurture a positive hockey culture.

Actions for 2023-24 include:

  • Engaging in a pilot with minor hockey teams that educates and brings awareness about maltreatment.
  • Continuing the education process of Hockey Alberta’s Staff, Volunteers and Board of Directors.
  • Creating a new EDI Grant for Member initiatives for advancing the game through a focus on Equity, Diversity and Inclusion,
  • Identifying and implementing Safe Sport/ EDI standards, tools and resources for use by our Members,

To review the complete plan, click on the website link below:

OBJECTIVES AND KEY RESULTS >

As well, on August 16, Hockey Canada released its Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Path Forward document, and asked its branches across Canada to be involved and have stake in the Path Forward. Simply put, Hockey Alberta is in – with a commitment to working at the local, provincial and national levels to ensure a safe environment and a positive experience for all participants.


For more information, please contact Hockey Alberta:

Email: [email protected]

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Image: Hockey Alberta Coach teaching Para Hockey


Para Hockey Gliding into Red Deer

RED DEER – Para hockey is gliding into the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre in Red Deer, September 9-10.

The Para Hockey Player Development Camp is a one-day camp designed to accommodate players of all ages and skill levels. The camp is taking place on Saturday and features on-ice skill development and game play. Equipment (sledge and sticks) are being provided to new players to use at the camp.

There are two ice sessions scheduled for Saturday, with a drop-in session available on Sunday morning from 9-10.

Following Sunday’s ice session, a para hockey-specific coaching clinic is scheduled. The clinic includes basic skills, the importance of having players develop confidence, self-esteem and a love for the game. Coaches who complete this session will leave with the in-person portion of Coach 2 qualification, knowledge and resources specific to coaching para hockey. Full Coach 2 certification is required of all para hockey head coaches.

Both the on-ice sessions and coach clinic will be taught by National Women’s Para Hockey Team Head Coach, Tara Chisholm. Chisholm has worked in the para game for nearly two decades with experience at all levels.

Para hockey is open to both male and female able-bodied and disabled players of all ages. Played in a sit-down sledge, with two sticks, it is a game that everyone can play.

For those interested in trying/participating in para hockey this season, can reach out to a program near you.

Para Hockey Programs >

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Join Our Team!

Hockey Alberta is now accepting applications for the position of Senior Manager, Finance and Risk. This role focuses onleading the day-to-day operations for Hockey Alberta and Hockey Alberta Foundation’s financial processes and enterprise risk management. As a full time position, the Senior Manager position includes, but is not limited to:

  • Responsible for the delivery of organizational Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) as assigned.
  • Manage and lead all functions, staff and volunteers, within Finance & Risk, including the performance management of all employees within your defined area.
  • Engage all employees to provide input into the development of the organization’s capital and operating budget and to activate on business plan objectives as assigned.
  • Provide oversight on all activities and functions implemented and/or delivered under the leadership of Finance & Risk.
  • Act as a liaison to Hockey Canada on any relevant topics, as necessary.

This position leads all processes for budgeting, forecasting, reporting, audits, payables, receivables, fund management as well as processes for risk identification and management. Leading staff in establishing and implementing financial and risk processes, this position is responsible for identifying efficiencies and ensuring organizational accountability is in place.

Job Posting >

The deadline to apply for this position is Sunday, September 24.

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Image: Hockey Alberta Coach


Coach Clinics open for Registration

With the new season around the corner, coach clinics are taking place throughout the province.

Coaching is a great way to give back to and get involved with the game. Clinics are being held virtually and in-person. A list of coach requirements needed for each division, is available on hockeyalberta.ca.

Coach Requirements >

This season, the Coach 1 – Intro to Coach clinic is being offered at a discounted rate of $22 (plus GST) thanks to the Hockey Alberta Foundation and their partnership with the Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation and Calgary Flames Foundation.

All coaching requirements need to be completed by November 15.


FEMALE COACHES

In an effort to provide an inclusive space, Hockey Alberta is also hosting female-only National Coach Certification Program (NCCP) Coach 2 courses. The courses are scheduled for this fall in Edmonton on Oct. 28 and dates are expected to be added in Calgary.


GOALTENDING COACHES

Instructional Stream 1 and 2 clinics for goaltending coaches are now available. Contact Matt Weninger ([email protected]), Regional Manager South of Elite Hockey Development, for dates.


RESPECT IN SPORT

Coaches are required to complete the Respect in Sport program. The Respect in Sport Activity Leader/Coach Program educates coaches and activity leaders to recognize, understand and respond to issues of bullying, abuse, harassment and discrimination.

Respect in Sport Coach >


PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Hockey Alberta is committed to providing a positive experience for everyone in the game and believes that coach education plays a pivotal role in creating a positive environment. Coaches are encouraged to participate in courses beyond the requirements. Professional Coach Development opportunities are listed on hockeyalberta.ca.

Register for a Coach Clinic >

Professional Coach Development Clinics >

Online Coach Professional Development >

For any questions, or for more information, the Hockey Alberta Regional Manager in your area.

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Image: hockey puck drop and face off


2023-24 Season Puck Drop

The puck is about to drop on the 2023-24 season!

Hockey Alberta has been working to ensure the game gives everyone a positive experience this season. The 2023-24 Season Puck Drop is here to share the changes coming this season, and information you need to know as you sharpen your skates for the new season.

On the webpage you can find what’s new in 2023, learn about Hockey Alberta’s refocused strategic direction, how to play, coach and official clinics, information on Team Alberta programs, grants and funding and important dates.

2023-24 Season Puck Drop >

Good luck this season! And remember, hockey is supposed to be fun. Let’s give everyone a positive experience in 2023-24.

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Image: Lanny McDonald and Curtis Glencross hold up the Glencross Invitational trophy


Glencross Invitational Skating into Red Deer

RED DEER – The Glencross Invitational is celebrating its 10th anniversary of raising funds for charitable organizations in central Alberta with the second annual Charity Hockey Tournament and Celebrity Poker Event on October 19.

Over the past decade, the Glencross Invitational has raised $1.8 million for the Hockey Alberta Foundation and Ronald McDonald House Charities Alberta through the Glencross Roughstock event, and last year’s inaugural hockey tournament and poker event.

This year’s edition of the Glencross Invitational sees the Charity Hockey Tournament hosted at the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre followed by the Celebrity Poker Event at the Harvest Centre in Red Deer.

Four teams compete on the ice in the morning. Each team of 15 skaters and a goaltender includes five celebrities and an appearance by a celebrity guest coach. A limited number of player spots are available for purchase, as well as tickets to watch the action unfold. Once the skates are hung up, cards are dealt for the Celebrity Poker Event.

“We’re excited to celebrate 10 years of the Glencross Invitational and are looking forward to getting back on the ice,” said Curtis Glencross. “When we started this, we didn’t have a goal dollar, but to be 10 years in and have raised nearly $2 million for children and families across Alberta is pretty incredible.”

More information on the partnership opportunities is available in the Sponsorship Package below. Tickets to watch the tournament are available online.

Sponsorship Package >

Hockey Tickets >

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Image: kids with instructor learning para hockey


Para Hockey Player and Coach Development Opportunities

Hockey Alberta is set to host the fifth Para Hockey Season Kick-Off Event on September 9-10 at the Gary W. Harris Canada Game Centre in Red Deer.

The event consists of a Player Development Camp on the Saturday, and a Coach 2 – Coach Level certification course on Sunday.

The Player Development Camp is for new and returning players of all ages, abilities and skill levels. There will be two ice sessions on Saturday that will focus on skill development and game play. Equipment (sledges and sticks) are provided for new players to use at the camp. A bonus “drop-in” ice time also is available on Sunday from 9-10 am.

The Coach Clinic is Para Hockey-specific. Current Para Hockey coaches, or anyone who would like to coach Para Hockey, are eligible to register. The course includes an in-person classroom session (four hours) and an on-ice session (one hour). This is a great opportunity for para hockey players to develop leadership skills and learn the basics of coaching. To gain the full Coach 2 certification, coaches must also complete an online course.

REGISTER FOR THE PARA HOCKEY PLAYER DEVELOPMENT CAMP >

REGISTER FOR COACH 2 CLINIC >

REGISTER FOR COACH 2 – ON-LINE COURSE >

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Image: Hockey Alberta Referee


Officials clinics now open for registration

RED DEER – Registration for Hockey Alberta Officials Clinics is now open. Beginning August 26, clinics are taking place across the province, continuing through to November.   

Officiating offers a network of people who love the game and are looking to give back. For every game worked, officials receive a game fee and there is an opportunity to work through the ranks from minor to elite hockey.  

Anyone 12 years old (13 years old in the Calgary and Edmonton areas) as of December 31 is eligible to become an official. Each season, officials must re-certify by taking a clinic.  Clinics include an online course, in-person portion and an on-ice session.

To become an official, create an HCR 3.0 account and register for the HU – Online Officiating ½ course that must be completed prior to the in-person portion. Skates, a helmet with a visor and a whistle are necessary for the on-ice sessions.  

Become an official > 
Find a clinic near you >  

Check back regularly to find a clinic near you and that fits your schedule as dates and locations are continuously added.  

Frequently asked questions > 

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KidSport’s Oil Country Hockey Assist Program launches for second season

EDMONTON – KidSport’s Oil Country Hockey Assist Program is back!

The Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation and KidSport Alberta have teamed up once again to launch the second season of the KidSport Oil Country Hockey Assist Program.

Players registered in Red Deer area and north are eligible to apply for the program. Approved applicants will have their full registration fees (up to $3,000) covered and have access to no-cost equipment from Sport Central.

Hockey Alberta is proud to be partnering with the KidSport Oil Country Hockey Assist Program to help kids get on the ice this season.

How to Apply >

_____________________________________________________________________________________

About Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation
The Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation (EOCF) is a proud supporter of Oil Country and has been contributing to our community’s success since 2001. With a focus on programs aimed at those most vulnerable in our community, especially in Edmonton’s downtown, and youth hockey programming with a goal to increase participation of under-represented groups in our community, the Oilers Foundation is dedicated to building strong, vibrant and safe communities by demonstrating philanthropic leadership and continues its deep legacy of giving back. Thanks to the generosity of our valued hockey fans, Oilers players and alumni, the EOCF Board of Directors, Oilers Entertainment Group (OEG) employees and the Katz Family, the Foundation has contributed over $66 million to charitable organizations and minor hockey programs across Oil Country since 2001.

About KidSport

KidSport’s core business as a charity is subsidizing sport registration fees for kids from low-income families. We believe that playing hockey promotes the development of children’s social, mental, and physical well being. We fundamentally believe that all kids who want to play hockey should be able to regardless of their family’s socioeconomic status. We have 25 KidSport chapters throughout Oil Country that provide the infrastructure to get funds to those families who need it to get their kids playing hockey. In addition, the Provincial KidSport Fund covers those communities where we do not have a chapter and the Indigenous KidSport Fund supports kids in Indigenous communities. A simple one-page application process gets things started. Once approved KidSport sends a cheque to the minor hockey association on the child’s behalf for the registration fee. In our last normal year 2019 our 38 chapters across Alberta assisted 13,677 kids into 40 sport’s by paying $3.2 million in registration fees.

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Roket Gear on board as Hockey Alberta’s Newest Partner

RED DEER – Hockey Alberta is excited to announce a new partnership with Roket Gear.

Through the partnership, Roket Gear is offering Hockey Alberta members (associations, teams and players) a discount on their performance training equipment.

“Our commitment to supporting player development is the foundation of our partnership, and we’re excited to partner with Hockey Alberta,” said Dr. Niz Saab, Roket Gear Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer. “Together we want to help players improve their performance with our training equipment by helping them develop strength and explosive speed while performing their skills on-ice. This is known as specificity training and we contend it’s the next level in sports performance training.”

Roket Gear, was co-founded by Dr. Niz Saab and Eddie Halabi in 2018 and launched in 2022. The system offers professional athletes, competitive amateurs, and coaches easy-to-use, portable training equipment. The equipment can be personalized with precise amounts of weight allowing individuals to build explosive power, speed and strength while they train.

“This technology offers a game-changing solution to help players improve with a simple and versatile system and Hockey Alberta is pleased to be able to partner with Roket Gear giving our members access to a customizable and sport specific tool,” said Mike Klass, Director of Business Operations for Hockey Alberta. “In addition to offering our members discounted pricing to the training equipment, Roket Gear has also committed to dedicating a portion of sales to develop players in the province.”

For more information or to access the 20% discount visit roketgear.com and use the code HOCKEYALBERTA20 at checkout.

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For more information please contact:

Mike Klass
Hockey Alberta
Director, Business Operations
[email protected]
403.967.0058

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Board of Directors Recruitment Notice

The Alberta Amateur Hockey Association (Hockey Alberta) is seeking qualified candidates for three (3) Director at Large positions on its Board of Directors.

DIRECTOR AT LARGE JOB DESCRIPTION >

Deadline to submit a nomination package is AUGUST 31, 2023.

APPLICATION / NOMINATION FORM >

Hockey Alberta is the governing body for organized amateur hockey in the Province of Alberta. The Board of Directors builds and monitors the strategy of the organization through its vision, mission, values and strategic direction. The Board operates under a Policy Governance Model and delegates operations to the Chief Executive Officer. The Board is elected by and accountable to the members of Hockey Alberta. The Board holds regular meetings, either in-person in Red Deer or via phone/ online platform.

Candidate Qualifications

The Board of Directors is focused on being a diverse group comprised of individuals with a variety of skill sets and experiences. For 2023, criteria to be considered by the Nominations Committee for each candidate include:

Skills and Experience

Industry Knowledge

· Experience with aspects of the game at various levels

· Knowledge/ experience with Membership Relations (in medium and small sized communities)

Technical Skills

  • ·Legal expertise; or
  • Fund Development and Revenue Generation for Non-Profit expertise; or
  • Communications/ Marketing/ Social Media expertise.

Governance

  • Experience in Advocacy – Government Relations/ Lobbying; or
  • ·Diversity / Inclusion Strategy and Education expertise; or
  • Environmental and Social Responsibility expertise.

Diversity

The Board of Directors believes in the benefits diversity brings and recognizes that diversity of thought makes prudent business sense. Having a Board composed of individuals with diverse skills, experience, backgrounds and perspectives, as well as individuals of diverse gender identity, will provide:

  • competitive advantage;
  • robust understanding of opportunities, issues and risks;
  • inclusion of different concepts, ideas, and relationships;
  • enhanced decision-making and dialogue; and
  • heightened capacity for oversight of the organization and its governance.

For purposes of Board composition, diversity includes business and industry skills and experience, gender, and ethnicity. The Board will make good use of these differences and distinctions among individuals in recruiting for the optimum composition of the Board.

Recruitment for Board members must collectively reflect the diverse nature of the business environment in which the organization operates and be made on merit, in the context of the skills, experience, independence and knowledge which the Board requires to be effective.

In addition:

  • Previous experience on a not-for-profit board and knowledge of the workings of a board from a good governance perspective are preferred.
  • Experience and understanding of the workings of a Provincial Sport Organization is an asset.
  • Successful completion of a Criminal Record Check is required.

Process Overview

The Governance Committee of Hockey Alberta has created an external three-person Nominations Committee that includes a former Chair of the Board of Directors.

All submitted applications are reviewed by the Nominations Committee. Through the application and interview process, the Nominations Committee will prepare a list of qualified candidates to be presented to the membership for election.

Board of Director positions are elected by the Members of Hockey Alberta at the Annual General Meeting (AGM). Elected individuals will serve a term of three years.

Article 5 of the Bylaws of the Alberta Amateur Hockey Association outlines the requirements that must be met for an individual to be considered eligible to be elected to the Board of Directors.

The links below to the Hockey Alberta website provide more information on Hockey Alberta Bylaws, and the Board’s Governance Model, Code of Conduct, and Conflict of Interest policy. Candidates are required to complete a conflict of interest declaration with their application.

I. BYLAWS AND REGULATIONS >

II. BOARD GOVERNANCE, STRUCTURE AND POLICIES >


For more information, please contact:

Rob Virgil

Nominations Committee Chair, Hockey Alberta

[email protected]

780-915-2873

Rob Litwinski

CEO, Hockey Alberta

[email protected]

403-342-6777


Information Bulletin 22-13 >

News

AAA and AA Male & Female Tryout List Update

Following the removal of the Notification of Tryout procedure for AA and AAA hockey at the beginning of the 2022-23 season, Hockey Alberta has continued to review the tryout notification and player listing process, attempting to balance ease of registration for players while still ensuring a player’s resident Minor Hockey Association is aware of a player’s whereabouts throughout the tryout period.

For the 2023-24 season, Hockey Alberta has created a AA/AAA Tryout List online spreadsheet and posted it on the overview page of the Hockey Alberta Centre Ice Portal so that all registrars and minor hockey association presidents can access a live, singular database for players pursuing AAA and AA Male and Female tryouts during the 2023-24 hockey season.

Associations hosting AAA and AA Male and Female tryouts will be expected to upload the list of players registered for their tryouts to this spreadsheet according to the instructions outlined on the first tab of the spreadsheet. Associations hosting tryouts must upload all players attending tryouts, including those whose resident MHA is the same MHA hosting tryouts (ie: St. Albert MHA must upload all players from Barrhead, CR Knights, AND St. Albert for their U15 and U17 AAA tryout list) as the AA and Elite Male and Female Committees will use the information to assess Draw Zone/Recruitment Area engagement and health.

By each Tuesday afternoon between August 1 and October 1, associations will be required to use the legend provided on each sheet to update the players as they progress from in tryouts, to being released, to making teams or pursuing second tryouts. This will allow associations not hosting tryouts to keep up to date on where players that fall within their resident boundaries are located throughout the tryout process. Associations must fill out all columns on the spreadsheet.

By sorting the Resident MHA or Tryout Team columns alphabetically, any association can easily locate all players from a given minor hockey association or trying out for a given team. Using the legend they can then determine where players are located in the tryout process.

Associations may begin inputting tryout information immediately after reading through all instructions.


For any questions, please contact

Hudson Kelly

Coordinator, Elite Male Hockey


Information Bulletin 22-12 >

News

Image: Eight Albertans were selected in the 2023 NHL Draft


Eight Albertans selected in the 2023 NHL Draft

RED DEER - Eight Albertans were selected in the 2023 NHL Draft to 7 different teams.

After Red Deer’s Nate Danielson was selected in round one of the draft on Wednesday night, 7 more were drafted in rounds two through seven on Thursday.

In total, eight are alumni of the Alberta Elite Hockey League and two Team Alberta alumnus.

A full list of Albertans drafted can be found below:

Pick Player Team Position Hometown

FIRST ROUND

9 Nate Danielson Detroit Red Wings Forward Red Deer

THIRD ROUND

78 Koehn Ziemmer Los Angeles Kings Forward Mayerthorpe

FOURTH ROUND

105 Ty Mueller Vancouver Canucks Forward Cochrane

FIFTH ROUND

141 Scott Ratzlaff Buffalo Sabres Goaltender Irma
160 Justin Kipkie Arizona Coyotes Defence Calgary

SEVENTH ROUND

200 Brett Hyland Washington Capitals Forward Edmonton
201 Emmitt Finnie Detroit Red Wings Forward Lethbridge
218 Aiden Fink Nashville Predators Forward Calgary

News

Image: Hockey Stick with Pride Tape


Message in the Tape

Hockey Alberta is celebrating Pride Season. Throughout the summer (June to September) Pride events are taking place across the country to celebrate the 2SLGBTQI+ community.

In 2014, Jeff McLean was working with a team from Calder Bateman Communications and the University of Alberta when the team developed a badge of support from the hockey world to the 2SLGBTQI+ community.

“We felt that there was a need to address the issue of homophobia in sports,” said McLean. “We looked at data and realized that there was a lot of homophobic language used in and around sports culture and it spiked during major sporting events.”

Being from Edmonton, it was a natural decision to start the movement in hockey. Using his connections to the NHL, McLean began researching team and locker room culture.

His findings sparked the idea, of a badge of support that would deliver a positive tone to say that everyone is welcome on the ice. With the help of Calder Bateman Communications, Pride Tape was created.

“If they could repeat logos or graphics on tape, we wondered if they could print colours, like the Pride flag, through the roll of tape,” said McLean. “That’s where we really connected with the NHL, we knew if we were going to do this, we needed their support. They got on board immediately.”

After seven years, McLean still has “pinch me” moments when he sees some of the biggest names in the game sporting Pride Tape, but the NHL has supported the movement since day one.

“The Edmonton Oilers debuted six different rolls as a prototype to show the idea at their skills competition,” said McLean. “As the players jumped on the ice with their sticks taped, it was such a flash of colour and I got goosebumps. That’s where it became a reality.”

Since, organizations like the Edmonton Oilers, Calgary Flames and Seattle Kraken have partnered with Pride Tape to present events that promote equality and inclusion like the Pride Cup and Seattle Pride Classic.

Pride Tape has become a fixture of Pride celebrations across the NHL, CHL, grassroots levels and has become a multi-sport tape.

“In its simplest form, (Pride Tape) is an opportunity for an individual to fly their own flag and say, hockey is for everyone,” said McLean. “Everyone who has the bravery and courage to put the tape on their stick is saying ‘I believe in inclusion, I support the 2SLGBTQI+ community and this is important to me.’”

Sporting Pride Tape delivers a strong message without hearing any words.

"Pride Tape goes much more beyond a product, it’s a grassroots, global community initiative," said McLean. "I think that’s the biggest attribute of the tape on someone’s stick is it helps move the conversation along and make it bigger and stronger than what it needs to be."

Every day the founders of Pride Tape see a story. Some are positive and empowering, while others include bullying and harassment.

“Everybody’s story is different and everyone has their own reasons for using it (Pride Tape),” said McLean. “Usually they are pretty personal and pretty close to their heart, pretty close to their family and we see it on social media, actually sharing those stories and amplifying their experiences. It’s that communication that is essential.”

Today, Pride Tape is in 40 different countries, driving a grassroots, global movement of support, inclusion and sparking the conversation.

“We just make tape. The fans and supporters make it powerful,” said McLean. “We hear from young players to coaches, officials, etc., the universal support for the importance of this inclusion message in sports and society is huge.”

Purchase Pridetape >



Jeff Mclean is also the co-author of the children’s book, Who’s Hockey. This season, the Hockey Alberta Foundation and Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation partnered to deliver the book to schools across the province.

Who’s Hockey is based on one of the NHL’s Declarations – acceptance. The story is about a girl who moves to a new town and wants to share her love of the game with everyone she meets, of all demographics.

Purchase Who’s Hockey >

News

Just Go For It

Sadie Makokis was meant to be a hockey player. The fifth of eight children, she comes from a family of hockey players.

For the 18-year-old, the 2022-23 season proved to be a storybook ending to her minor hockey career. Not only did she commit to the University of New Hampshire to play Division I hockey, she represented Alberta at both the Canada Winter Games (CWG) and the National Aboriginal Hockey Championships (NAHC).

“It’s amazing and surreal to say that I’ve been able to represent Alberta numerous times,” said Makokis. “It’s kind of cool to see how far I’ve come… I wouldn’t have been able to do it without my teammates and coaches.”

Makokis first came on the scene five years ago when she played in the NAHC as a double under-age.

“As a rookie you have to earn your stripes and prove yourself a little bit more because people haven’t seen you play as much,” said Makokis. “You don’t have that experience that others may have had. Now I know what I need to do and how to prepare and play.”

Her confidence in her game didn’t happen overnight.

“Playing in short-term competition four times now at this level has made it a lot easier,” said Makokis. “I go into tryouts prepared and ready to go. I try to set that example for myself and for others, but overall, I just try to play my own game.”

Playing her own game is what Makokis does best, and it’s what solidified her spot on Team Alberta twice this season.

In December, Makokis was selected to Team Alberta U18 to compete at the 2023 CWG in Charlottetown, PEI. The team finished fifth overall. In May, Makokis brought home a bronze medal with Team Alberta Female from the 2023 NAHC in Winnipeg.

“The two are very different tournaments and styles,” said Makokis. “In PEI, it was super diverse and we were all there for hockey. At NAHC, we come from a common background and we are all there to play hockey as well as represent our people.”

A member of the Saddle Lake Cree Nation, the opportunity to represent her people is why Makokis continues to try out for NAHC each year.

“It’s really humbling to say that my NAHC teammates are all my friends now,” said Makokis. “I’ll have them forever because we share the same experiences, have the same backgrounds and where we come from.”

Saddle Lake is an hour and 45 minutes away from St. Albert, where Makokis now calls home. She’s aware that living in the city has provided her with more opportunities than other people from Saddle Lake – and she understands the responsibilities that accompany being part of a generation that is blazing a trail for Indigenous youth in Alberta.

“It’s cool to be able to create that path and have other Indigenous youth know that they can do this too,” said Makokis. “I’m very proud to be Cree, to be Black and White, and I never realized that I’ve had that impact (on the next generation) over my short life that I’ve had.”

It’s not uncommon for Makokis to receive a message of support from someone watching her story unfold.

“It’s really cool to see I’m able to inspire my younger cousins and the other families on the reserve,” said Makokis. “I get messages saying ‘we’re all rooting for you and we’re all supporting you’ and I know that I have my entire community as well as several other communities in Alberta behind me. That’s amazing.”

Makokis is honoured to represent the Indigenous community on this large of scale, but her message for the next generation is clear.

“Just go for it,” said Makokis. “It doesn’t matter where you played the year before - as long as you go into the tryouts and be you. Take a chance on yourself and trust yourself. You’ve been playing hockey a long time and know these skills, so just trust yourself that you’re able to do it. Just go for it.”

News

2023 BFL Female Coach of the Year

Congratulations to Krista Wilson and Tara Swanson on being named Alberta’s 2023 BFL Female Coaches of the Year by Hockey Canada. Through the BFL Female Coach of the Year, Hockey Canada’s mission is to recognize coaches who are leaders in hockey and leaders in life, both in community and high performance leagues.

2023 Alberta BFL Female Coach of the Year – Community

Wilson spent the 2022-23 season with the Airdrie U15 A Female Lightning. In total, she has 12 years of coaching experience, and holds her Development 1 certification. Wilson is always striving to improve her skillset and knowledge base to help her athletes be the best they can be on and off the ice.

As an advocate for mental health awareness, this season, Wilson held a Health Challenge for the players which provided challenges encouraging physical and mental wellness. She ensures her players are prepared and focused for hockey and prioritizes celebrating life outside of the game.

2023 Alberta BFL Female Coach of the Year – High Performance

Swanson is a veteran behind the bench who currently works with the North Central Impact of the U15 AA Alberta Female Hockey League. Her coaching philosophy emphasizes her players and their development. She works with each player individually and as a whole team to determine goals and expectations for the season. She makes it clear that improvement and success is not always measured by the score of the game.

Swanson leads by example. She creates an environment where players are comfortable to express themselves, ensures a team free of harassment, discrimination and bullying and is always the first off the bench to shake other coaches hands. She uses her experiences to help mentor young coaches in the association and gives back to the game at the provincial level. Her goal to make everyone around her better, makes her an excellent role model for the young adults with whom she works.

BFL Female Coach of the Year

Coaches from coast to coast were nominated for Hockey Canada’s BFL Female Coach of the Year award. A selection committee chose the provincial and territorial winners for each category based on fair play and sportsmanship, emphasis on emotional and physical well-being of players, and commitment to developing every player and dedication to the game on and off the ice.

Each provincial and territorial winner receives a $2,500 bursary. A national winner from each category will be announced in June.

News

Registration now open for 2023-24 First Shift program

Do you have a child aged 6-10 years who is ready to fall in love with hockey? Registration is now open for the 2023-24 NHL/NHLPA First Shift program.

The NHL/NHLPA First Shift program is designed to ensure a positive experience for new-to-hockey families by offering a low-cost entry program to hockey.

REGISTER FOR THE FIRST SHIFT PROGRAM NOW >

Hockey Alberta News

Hockey Alberta will be running the First Shift Program from Nov. 4 - Apr. 5, 2024. In total, the First Shift will be offered in 11 locations across Alberta during the 2023-24 season:

Canmore - Spring

Calgary (Hockey Calgary) - Fall

Carstairs - Fall

Chestermere - Winter

Edmonton (Edmonton Oilers & Hockey Edmonton)- Fall and Winter

Elk Point - Fall

Grande Prairie - Fall

Lethbridge - Fall

Red Deer (Hockey Alberta) - Winter

Leduc - Fall

St. Albert - Spring


To register for a First Shift program near you, and for more information, click here.

News

Dream Your Future

Darren Reid quite literally dreamt his future.

The assistant coach of Team Alberta Male, who competed at the 2023 National Aboriginal Hockey Championships (NAHC), had a dream about playing hockey for a team with a lightning bolt at six-years-old.

When he was eight, he bought a pack of hockey cards, where he discovered the Tampa Bay Lightning. Ten years later, the Lightning drafted him 256th overall in the 2002 NHL Entry Draft.

Along the way, there were little signs that gave Reid motivation to keep honing his skills. Like the reoccurring dream he would have in his teenage years of driving in a city, with a little league baseball park, opening up to the city as he turned the corner. In his first year as a professional hockey player in Springfield, Massachusetts, Reid found himself in the exact scenario he had dreamed about for years.

“I went for a drive on one of my first days in Springfield. I saw the little league field on the right and I thought if there’s a city around this corner, then this is meant to be,” said Reid. “I turned the corner and I was in shock. I pulled over and I took it all in. I had this feeling this is where I’m supposed to be in life.”

Reid’s involvement in hockey stems back to his biggest inspiration, his grandfather.

“My grandfather led all the sports in our family. My Dad and my uncles grew up with it and my Dad wanted that for my brother and me,” said Reid. “I was three years old the first time I skated, and I fell in love with hockey.”

As a kid, Reid loved the game. He never missed an Edmonton Oilers or Detroit Red Wings game. His passion came from the generations before him and when his family saw his potential to go to the next level, they pushed him harder.

“I’m very grateful for my Dad’s belief in me. He saw that I had what it takes to go to the next level,” said Reid. “I recognized that I had that hard work, that passion, that wanting to get better skill, that would take me there.”

By the time he was 14, Reid was one of the better players on his team and in his leagues in the Lac La Biche area. But he wondered why some of the really good hockey players he grew up playing with never moved on.

“You wonder why sometimes, why some people get chosen and some people don’t,” said Reid. “Now that I’m a coach and I was a scout, you understand and can see the difference between hard working players and kids who are just good players. Hard work is something that you can’t teach, it’s instilled.”

Reid’s work ethic couldn’t be ignored. But growing up in the 1990s as an Indigenous male, neither could the racism he experienced.

“I hate to say it, but there was a lot of racism which prevented me from playing on different teams,” said Reid. “There were teams that I didn’t make that helped me get better in my own way. I honestly think I needed that because it pushed me 10 times harder to play.”

As Reid moved through the ranks in his career, he would compete against the same players he was cut for in Midget AAA, while he played Midget B at home.

“It was really hard mentally to figure out why I couldn’t make some of these teams. That’s something I can’t change, but I’m grateful that in hockey today, a lot of the Indigenous kids are getting the opportunities to showcase their talent,” said Reid.

In Lac La Biche, a local former professional player, Terry Ewasiuk, took notice. He convinced Milan Dragicevic, then head coach and general manager of the Drayton Valley Thunder in the Alberta Junior Hockey League, to watch Reid.

“Milan truly believed in me. Even though I only played for him for two games, he was the one who brought me to Drayton Valley and selected me to play,” said Reid. “Then Barry Medori took over. Barry gave me the opportunity.”

Medori was the coach that Reid needed - giving him an opportunity, and not giving up on him.

“That’s what I teach kids today, I don’t give up on them. I don’t send them away, I want to teach them, until they show me they can’t,” said Reid.

Under Medori, Reid began to blossom. He was named rookie of the year and received full-ride scholarship offers to NCAA schools. Then the Western Hockey League (WHL) called. After discussing it with his family, Reid chose to enter the WHL with the Medicine Hat Tigers.

With the Tigers, Reid honed his game. He had a breakout season in 2004 when the Tigers won the WHL championship. After that, he knew he was ready for the next step in his hockey career.

But timing is everything and after realizing his dream of being drafted to the NHL, the timing in Reid’s career began to go awry.

What should have been his first NHL training camp with the Tampa Bay Lightning was put on hold for a year due to the 2004-05 NHL lockout. He began his career in the American Hockey League with the Springfield Falcons under coach Dirk Graham. Reid received the True Grit award, an award presented to the player who exemplifies the traits of courage, determination, and a strong work ethic.

After five years in the Lightning system, he was traded to the Philadelphia Flyers. The trade felt like a new chance at the NHL dream, especially since cracking the Lightning lineup was tough after they won the Stanley Cup in 2004. He played 14 games with the Flyers. But his time in the AHL with the Philadelphia Phantoms, playing for coach Craig Berube, was priceless.

“We were Indigenous and he took me under his wing. He showed me what hard work meant,” said Reid. “I learned at junior, the personal aspect. Dirk gave me the opportunity to play my game. Then you get a coach who was a Stanley Cup Champion level, and he showed you what to do to players to get them to respond through hard work.”

When Reid retired from playing in 2010, his resume included a Calder Cup Championship with the Hershey Bears of the AHL, a WHL championship and multiple accolades acknowledging him for his hard work and dedication to the game.

At the time, Reid didn’t realize the platform that he’d been given as an Indigenous player, especially in north central Alberta.

“I didn’t ask for a spotlight and I didn’t know what to do with it, I’m not that kind of person,” said Reid. “It took me awhile to learn that I actually have something to offer the Indigenous community, because I’ve been there and I’ve went through the steps. Now I want to help the next generation so they don’t have to make the same mistakes I did.”

Blessed with good coaching throughout his career, he began to understand how he could give back, it started with operating hockey schools across North American for Indigenous youth.

“I always wanted to coach, but for the first five years after playing, I felt I wasn’t ready to be the coach I wanted to be. I felt I needed to mature as a coach and as a person,” said Reid. “As time went on, I did…. I’m happy I can do stuff like that to give back to these kids. It’s something I have a passion for.”

In addition to Medori, Graham and Berube, he also credits his Tigers coach, Willie Desjardins for making him coach he is today.

“I’m still learning and I always will still learn, but I’m grateful for Barry, Willie, Dirk and Craig for teaching me how to be a great coach,” said Reid. “Willie made me who I am today as a coach. He instilled a lot of great coaching values in me. He knows how to dig into your soul and get the best out of you. He could have sent us home a lot of times, instead he put us on the right path.”

The combination of the four coaches who impacted his career and his own professional experience, has enabled Reid to grow into his position as an Assistant Coach at NAHC.

“Words can’t even explain how honoured I am to have been asked to help coach Team Alberta,” said Reid. “I wanted to be involved because I have this experience that a lot of our Indigenous youth don’t know.”

Reid is using this opportunity to share his wisdom with players of the next generation.

“If I had had this when I got to pro, it would have made me career a whole lot easier,” said Reid. “Helping these kids get to the next level and give them the best version of themselves to make it there, I’m just very honoured to help.”

As for envisioning his future, this is one dream he didn’t see coming.

“I never thought I’d be sitting here as a coach and be coaching Team Alberta,” said Reid. “We represent our province and that’s a big deal.”

News

Congratulations to the 2023 Award winners

RED DEER – Four individual and two minor hockey associations have been recognized as 2023 recipients of Hockey Alberta Awards, presented by ATB.

The Hockey Alberta Awards program provides the hockey community the opportunity to recognize outstanding individuals, teams and associations for their hard work and accomplishments in making a positive difference for participants in our sport each season.

Nominations are accepted from Hockey Alberta member organizations, staff members, volunteers and the hockey community. Each award recipient receives $1,000 for his/ her association.

The 2022-23 Hockey Alberta Award recipients are:

Coach of the Year: Chad Huseby (Red Deer). Chad was a coach of the Red Deer Minor Hockey U11B Flyers, and after a tragic incident occurred with the team’s head coach, Chad acted as support to the players and coaching staff to help guide them through the season.

Official of the Year: Taylor Burzminski (St. Albert). Taylor obtained his National High Performance Level certification in October. He skated two international events and the Alberta Junior Hockey League and Western Hockey League playoffs. He also serves as the Development Coordinator in the North Region.

Player of the Year: Ryley Budd (Calgary). Ryley, a goaltender with the Calgary Northstars of the Alberta Elite Hockey League, raised $5,000 for HEROS Hockey this season through a fundraising initiative with EnerCorp. The funds Ryley raised sent a goalie (and his team) in the HEROS program to Ontario for their first hockey tournament.

Volunteer of the Year: Janet Fairless (Grimshaw). Janet has volunteered with Hockey Alberta since 2009 in a variety of roles, including serving on the Minor Administration Committee.

Minor Hockey Association of the Year: St. Albert Minor Hockey Association (SAMHA). During the 2022-23 season, SAMHA demonstrated it was one of the most progressive organizations keeping the development of their players and support of voluteers at the forefront.

Exceptional Provincial Host Site Awards:

  • Olds Minor Hockey Association – U13 AA
  • St. Albert Minor Hockey Association – U17 AAA

Congratulations to all the award recipients and nominees. Hockey Alberta and the hockey community thank you for your contributions to our sport.

News

Lin Luymes - longtime Hockey Alberta volunteer

Hockey Alberta NewsLin Luymes, a long-time volunteer with Hockey Alberta, passed away on May 8 after some recent health issues. She was 55.

Lin had served as Registrar with Lacombe Minor Hockey for eight years until 2014, when she joined Hockey Alberta as a member of the Minor Administration Committee. In her volunteer role, Lin assisted minor hockey associations with the sometimes daunting tasks of registration processes, team and player approvals, and approving player transfers in HCR.

In 2019, she received her five-year award as a Hockey Alberta volunteer from CEO Rob Litwinski and Terry Engen, then-Board Chair.

In addition to her volunteer work with Hockey Alberta, Lin was also a deacon at Woody Nook Christian Reformed Church.

Lin is survived by her husband Andrew, sister Maureen Tabak, sons Mark (Laura), Peter (Kate), David (Ashley), grandchildren Bradley, Abigail, Blake, Lacie, and Josie, as well as numerous in-laws, nieces and nephews, and friends.

A Public Visitation is set for Monday, May 15 from 6-8 pm at Wilson’s Funeral Chapel with a Celebration of Life on Tuesday, May 16 at 1 pm at the Woody Nook CRC, 40104 Range Road 281 (west of Lacombe).

https://www.wilsonsfuneralchapel.ca/obituary/Lin-Luymes

News

Eight Albertans selected in first round of the 2023 WHL Draft

RED DEER - Eight Alberta players, registered in Hockey Alberta/Hockey Canada sanctioned programs, heard their names called during the first round of the 2023 WHL Draft on Thursday.

Albertans were selected first and second overall and five going in the top 10.

Prince Albert Raiders had the first two picks, selecting Lacombe’s Daxon Rudolph first overall, and Cochrane’s Riley Boychuk with the number two pick.

Five Albertans were selected in the top 10 including:

  • 4th: Keaton Verhoeff, Fort Saskatchewan (Victoria Royals)
  • 7th: Ty Meunier, St.Albert, (Prince Albert Raiders)
  • 8th: Brett Olson, Spruce Grove (Vancouver Giants).

Rounding out the list of Albertans selected in the first round were 13th Cruz Pavao, Calgary (Tri-City Americans), 16th Aaron Sawatzky, Didsbury (Moose Jaw Warriors), and 22nd Carter Esler, Okotoks (Spokane Chiefs)

Five of the eight Albertans are from the Alberta Elite Hockey League.

A full list of Albertans registered in Hockey Alberta/ Hockey Canada sanctioned programs drafted can be found below:

Pick Player Team Position Hometown
FIRST ROUND
1st Daxon Rudolph Prince Albert Raiders Defence Lacombe
2nd Riley Boychuk Prince Albert Raiders Forward Cochrane
4th Keaton Verheoff Victoria Royals Defence Fort Saskatchewan
7th Ty Meunier Prince Albert Raiders Forward St. Albert
8th Brett Olson Vancouver Giants Forward Spruce Grove
13th Cruz Pavao Tri-City Americans Forward Calgary
16th Aaron Sawatzky Moose Jaw Warriors Defence Didsbury
22nd Carter Esler Spokane Chiefs Goaltender Okotoks
SECOND ROUND
27th Bennett Kelly Prince Albert Raiders Defence Cochrane
29th Zachery Olsen Saskatoon Blades Forward Calgary
30th Sawyer Dingman Swift Current Broncos Forward Edmonton
32nd Rhys Jamieson Everett Silvertips Forward Calgary
33rd Easton LaPlante Calgary Hitmen Defence Calgary
34th Parker Snell Edmonton Oil Kings Goaltender St. Albert
37th Kayden Lemire Prince George Cougars Forward Edmonton
39th Jordan Duguay Portland Winterhawks Forward Edmonton
41st Cooper Williams Saskatoon Blades Forward Calgary
42nd Ryley Budd Saskatoon Blades Goaltender Calgary
43rd Dermot Johnston Prince George Cougars Defence Olds
44th Townes Kozicky Prince George Cougars Forward Calgary
THIRD ROUND
50th Steele Bass Prince Albert Raiders Goaltender High River
54th Finn Werner Everett Silvertips Goaltender St. Albert
55th Jesse McKinnon Tri-City Americans Forward St. Albert
57th Cage Smith Edmonton Oil Kings Forward Brooks
58th Braydon Riggall Vancouver Giants Defence Calgary
62nd Cole Prelusky Victoria Royals Goaltender Calgary
63rd Patrick Sopiarz Prince George Cougars Forward Edmonton
66th Caelen Joudrey Winnipeg ICE Forward Airdrie
FOURTH ROUND
69th Rhett Sather Victoria Royals Defence Rocky View
70th Nathan Guenther Saskatoon Blades Defence Edmonton
72nd Isaac Davies Brandon Wheat Kings Forward Carstairs
76th Owen Folstrom Kelowna Rockets Forward Calgary
79th Matthew Williams Edmonton Oil Kings Forward Leduc
85th Liam Eisnor Saskatoon Blades Defence Edmonton
88th Grady Pichette Lethbridge Hurricanes Defence Okotoks
FIFTH ROUND
89th Tracen Ashley Seattle Thunderbirds Defence Calgary
91st Dallin Antos Kelowna Rockets Defence Red Deer
92nd Finn Bagley Seattle Thunderbirds Forward Airdrie
94th Ryan Boyce Brandon Wheat Kings Forward Calgary
95th Knox Bendera Brandon Wheat Kings Forward Sherwood Park
102nd Brody Rotar Lethbridge Hurricanes Goaltender Lethbridge
104th Nolan Stewart Victoria Royals Forward Edmonton
105th Will McLaughlin Portland Winterhawks Defence Canmore
110th Radoslav Dmitrov Winnipeg ICE Defence Spruce Grove
SIXTH ROUND
114th Owen Cooper Everett Silvertips Forward Calgary
116th Gabriel O’Brien Kelowna Rockets Forward Edmonton
119th Brayden Ryan-Mackay Medicine Hat Tigers Forward Calgary
SEVENTH ROUND
136th Ben McBeath Kelowna Rockets Defence Calgary
137th Noah Chadi Kamloops Blazers Defence Edmonton
140th Emile Plourde Prince George Cougars Forward Sherwood Park
143rd Rylan Ng Calgary Hitmen Forward Lethbridge
144th David Byrne Calgary Hitmen Defence Calgary
145th Sullivan Fogolin Kelowna Rockets Defence St. Albert
146th Easton Daneault Lethbridge Hurricanes Forward Red Deer
149th Nash Nicolay Portland Winterhawks Forward Rocky Mountain House
150th Noah Milford Red Deer Rebels Forward Okotoks
153rd Brendan Rudolph Seatttle Thunderbirds Forward Calgary
EIGHTH ROUND
156th Joshua McKague Winnipeg ICE Defence Edmonton
158th Griffin Horne Calgary Hitmen Forward Lac Des Arcs
159th Avery Watson Medicine Hat Tigers Forward Edmonton
161st Rockston Ror-Chow Vancouver Giants Forward Edmonton
166th Darius Hordal Prince Albert Raiders Defence Edmonton
168th Hayden Iron Shirt Lethbridge Hurricanes Forward Lethbridge
169th Ryan Pedersen Prince George Cougars Defence Rocky View
172nd Kade Pierson Red Deer Rebels Forward Chestermere
176th Grady Wedman Winnipeg ICE Forward Leduc Country
NINTH ROUND
179th Mathieu Lajoie Victoria Royals Forward St. Albert
184th Aiden Sexsmith Swift Current Broncos Forward Calgary
188th Kai Zurowski Regina Pats Goaltender St. Albert
190th William Hogan Lethbridge Hurricanes Defence Edmonton
193rd Tate Hanson Portland Winterhawks Forward Strathmore
194th Nate Yellowaga Red Deer Rebels Defence Calgary
195th Kohen Lodge Saskatoon Blades Forward Red Deer
197th Keegan Bailey Seattle Thunderbirds Forward Airdrie
TENTH ROUND
203rd Ty Krooshoop Prince Albert Raiders Defence Rocky View
205th Kaden Hayes Vancouver Giants Forward Chestermere
207th Tafri Chingwaru Medicine Hat Tigers Defence Edmonton
216th Nolan Schmidt Red Deer Rebels Forward Edmonton
217th Rhett Romanchuk Saskatoon Blades Defence Dewberry
ELEVENTH ROUND
236th Riley Thorpe Moose Jaw Warriors Forward

St. Albert

238th Saul Astill Red Deer Rebels Defence

Edmonton

240th Rory Frew Kamloops Blazers Forward

Calgary

TWELFTH ROUND

256th Theron Bensler Lethbridge Hurricanes Defence Medicine Hat
258th Dylan Deets Moose Jaw Warriors Defence Calgary
262nd Damien Wiebe Kamloops Blazers Defence Sherwood Park

News

Hockey Alberta gliding into Prospects Cup

RED DEER – The Prospects Cup is gliding into Red Deer, May 11-14. Hockey Alberta’s youngest tournament for under-13 male athletes concludes the 2023 Spring Showcase.

Play starts with North Grey and Capital Royal on Thursday at 11:30 am at the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre. Eight teams are competing for a spot in the championship game on Sunday at 3:30 pm.

Over 200 students from École Mother Theresa School and École Camille J. Lerouge School are to be in attendance between Thursday and Friday. The Hockey Alberta Foundation has partnered with local schools to allow students to experience the great game of hockey.

The Prospects Cup is a round-robin tournament. The 20-player rosters are made up of two goaltenders, six defence and 12 forwards. Prior to this tournament under-15 male and female players competed at the Alberta Cup (April 27-30) and Alberta Challenge (May 4-7), respectively, as part of the Spring Showcase.

Games are being livestreamed on HockeyTV.

For more information on the Prospect Cup, visit prospectscup.ca or follow Hockey Alberta on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.

Watch Live >

Schedule >

Roster >

50/50 >


About Prospects Cup

The Prospects Cup is the first step of the Hockey Alberta Development program. It provides second-year U13 athletes, coaches, trainers, and administrators an opportunity to discover the qualities of competitive hockey in a well-organized regional camp and select team competition.

News

Sixteen Albertans named to NHL Central Scouting’s Midterm rankings

RED DEER - NHL Central Scouting has released its final rankings for the 2023 NHL draft with 16 Albertans making an appearance.

Two Albertan skaters landed in the top 32 of the North American skater rankings: Nate Danielson and Koehn Ziemmer.

Scott Ratzlaff, Jackson Unger and Cooper Michaluk are the three goaltenders to crack the top North American goaltenders.

The full list of Albertans appearing in the NHL Central Scouting midterm rankings can be found below:

Midterm Rank Player Position Team League
7 Nate Danielson Forward Brandon Wheat Kings WHL
25 Koehn Ziemmer Forward Prince George Cougars WHL
63 Aiden Fink Forward Brooks Bandits AJHL
107 Justin Kipkie Defence Victoria Royals WHL
115 Kai Uchacz Forward Red Deer Rebels WHL
125 Mazden Leslie Defence Vancouver Giants WHL
132 Saige Weinstein Defence Spokane Chiefs WHL
135 Morgan Brady Defence Spruce Grove Saints AJHL
141 Matteo Fabrizi Defence Red Deer Rebels WHL
195 Ty Daneault Forward Drumheller Dragons AJHL
205 Cole Miller Forward Edmonton Oil Kings WHL
212 Nicholas Wolfenberg Defence Okotoks Oilers AJHL
216 Cade Christenson Defence Sherwood Park Crusaders AJHL
4 Scott Ratzlaff Goaltender Seattle Thunderbirds WHL
19 Jackson Unger Goaltender Moose Jaw Warriors WHL
23 Cooper Michaluk Goaltender Spokane Chiefs WHL

News

Pacific Regional Championships Recap

The Alberta Elite Hockey League’s (AEHL) U18 AAA Calgary (NW) Flames punched their ticket to the Hockey Canada Men’s U18 National Club Championships, while the Alberta Female Hockey League’s (AFHL) U18 AAA Red Deer Sutter Fund Chiefs hosted the Fraser Valley Rush in the Pacific Regional Championships April 7-8.


AEHL Pacific Regional Championships

The Flames swept the Okanagan Rockets in two games to claim the Pacific Regional Championship.

The series took place in Calgary at the Father David Bauer Arena, and offence was on display for both teams.

In game one, the Rockets scored twice in the third period to send the game to overtime. But it only 23 seconds in the extra frame for Wade Wallace to score the winning goal in the 5-4 victory. Calgary goals in regulation time were scored by Braden Ivey, Brett Wilson, Max Heise, and Aidan Larose.

In game two on Saturday, the Okanagan jumped out to a 4-2 lead after one. But the Flames scored five straight goals in a 15-minute span, and then held on for an 8-6 victory. Calgary was led by Joshua Wiebe with three goals and two assists, while Larose also added a hat-trick. Ivey and Russ Demo had the singles. Wilson had three assists, while Heise and Nolan Kelly had a pair of helpers each.

The Flames will now travel to the Men’s U18 National Club Championship to take on the top five U18 AAA teams from across the country. The tournament runs from April 24-20 in Saint-Hyacinthe, Que.


AFHL Pacific Regional Championships

Game one of the best-of-three series took place on Friday. In a back-and-forth game, Red Deer couldn’t find the back of the net as the Rush pulled away with a 3-0 win. Rebecca Noble earned the shutout for Fraser Valley.

Back at the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre on Saturday for game two, Red Deer got goals from Nadia Lavoie and Rylee McLeod, but it wasn’t enough as the Rush prevailed 5-2.

The Fraser Valley Rush will compete at the Esso Cup April 23-29 in Prince Albert, Sask.

News

2023 Provincial Championship recap: Week three

The 2023 Hockey Alberta Provincial Championships presented by ATB have come to an end.

Over three weeks, in 23 communities across the province, thirty-four teams were named provincial champions.


2023 Hockey Alberta Provincial Tournaments

The third weekend of provincial tournament action took place April 5-9.

Championship Games

Senior AA – Wainwright Rustlers 6, Siksika Buffaloes 1

Junior B – Wainwright Bisons 3, Carstar Okotoks Bisons 1

U18 Tier 1 (NBC) – Trails West White 2, NWZ 704 1

U17 AAA – Okotoks Oilers 1, Fort Saskatchewan South Fort Chev Rangers 0


2023 Hockey Alberta League Playoffs

The Alberta Junior Hockey League is the last league playing for a title. In the division finals, the Brooks Bandits lead the South in a two-game lead over the Blackfalds Bulldogs. While the Spruce Grove Saints have taken two games against the Bonnyville Pontiacs.

Week one results >

Week two results >

News

Alberta to host Pacific Regional Championships

The Alberta Female Hockey League and Alberta Elite Hockey League U18 AAA division are set to host Pacific Regional Championships in Red Deer and Calgary April 7-9.

All games are available to stream live on Hockey TV.


Alberta Female Hockey League

The Alberta Female Hockey League’s U18 AAA Red Deer Sutter Fund Chiefs are hosting the Fraser Valley Rush in the Pacific Regional Championships.

In the best-of-three series, games begin at 6 P.M. on Friday.

Schedule >

The winner of the series will go on to represent the Pacific Region at the Esso Cup in Prince Albert, Sask., April 23-29.

Throughout the season, the Chiefs sat in the top three of the league standings. At provincials, they overcame the Calgary Fire in a shoot-out to claim the championship.


Alberta Elite Hockey League

The U18 AAA Calgary (NW) Flames of the Alberta Elite Hockey League are looking to extend their win streak versus Okanagan Rockets.

Games begin on Friday at 6 P.M. at the Father David Bauer Arena.

Schedule >

The winner of the best-of-three series, will represent the Pacific Region at the Men’s U18 National Club Championships April 24-30 in Saint-Hyacinthe, Que.

Calgary finished second in the South Division during regular season play. The team went on to sweep the St. Albert Nektar Raiders in a best-of-five series to win the provincial championship.

News

2023 Provincial Championship preview: Week three

After three weeks, 23 communities, and 34 events, the final weekend is here for the Hockey Alberta Provincial Championships, presented by ATB.

Action begins today (April 5) with the Junior B provincials in Okotoks, and continues through to Sunday, April 9.

Other championship tournaments this weekend are:

The Alberta Junior Hockey League is down to four teams seeking the provincial championship. Playing in the South Division final are the Brooks Bandits and Blackfalds Bulldogs, while the Bonnyville Pontiacs and Spruce Grove Saints will go head-to-head in the North Division.

For more information on Hockey Alberta Provincial Championships, presented by ATB, and to see the schedules of each division, visit haprovincials.ca.


Provincial Championship Merchandise

This year, Hockey Alberta is offering 2023 Provincial Championship merchandise. There are a number of items to choose from and “Champions 2023” can be added to any merchandise purchased after a provincials tournament. Any questions regarding merchandise can be directed to [email protected].

Shop Here >

News

2023 Provincial Championship recap: Week two

Ten teams skated away with titles as week two of the Hockey Alberta Provincial Championships, presented by ATB, wrapped up on Sunday.

Unlike week one, which included overtime and a shootout to decide several championships, regulation time was all that was needed to determine the week two champions.


2023 Hockey Alberta Provincial Tournaments

Play began on Thursday, March 30 across the province. On Sunday, 18 teams suited up for the final game, and nine were crowned champions.

Championship Games

Junior C – Calgary Wolverines 8, Springbank Rockies 6

AFHL U18 AA – Red Deer Sutter Fund Chiefs 1, North Central Impact 0

U18 AA – Edmonton Canadian Athletic Club (CAC) 6, West Central Tigers 3

U18 Tier 1 – Calgary Trails West (BC1) 4, Calgary Bow Valley (BC1) 1

U18 Tier 2 – La Crete 5, Athabasca 2

U18 Tier 3 – Fairview 6, Vegreville 4

U18 Female A – GHC Jr. Inferno Flyers 3, Stettler 2

U18 Female B – Cold Lake 4, Battle River Knights 0

U13 AA – Lethbridge 5, Calgary NWCAA Stamps 0


2023 Hockey Alberta League Playoffs

Calgary NW Flames claimed the AEHL U18 AAA provincial championship in three games over the St. Albert Nektar Raiders. The Flames will go on to host the Okanagan Rockets in Father David Bauer Arena in Calgary, April 7-9, in the Pacific Regional Championships.

AEHL U18 AAA Recap >

The Alberta Junior Hockey League is one step closer to naming a champion. The Spruce Grove Saints and Bonnyville Pontiacs will face each other in round three. Brooks Bandits await their round three opposition as Blackfalds and Drumheller will look to game seven to determine who is moving on.

Play continues on Tuesday, April 3.


Provincial Championship Merchandise

This year, Hockey Alberta is offering 2023 Provincial Championship merchandise. There are several items to choose from and “Champions 2023” can be added to any merchandise purchased after a Provincials tournament. Any questions regarding merchandise can be directed to [email protected].

TSK-3600_1265x500_opt1-EMAIL_TAKEOVER

News

2023 Provincial Championships preview: Week 2

The Alberta Elite Hockey League U18AAA champions were crowned on Wednesday night.

The Calgary (NW) Flames will join nine more champions decided during week two of the Hockey Alberta Provincial Championships, presented by ATB.

The Flames swept St. Albert Nektar Raiders in a best-of-five series and now represent Alberta at the Pacific Regional Championships in Calgary against the BC champion Okanagan Rockets. The winner will go on to play at the Men’s U18 National Club Championship.

In Provincial Championship action this weekend (March 30-April 2), nine tournaments are taking place throughout the province, including:

The Alberta Junior Hockey League continue their playoffs with eight teams remaining. Series records can be found on ajhl.ca.

The final Provincial Championship tournaments will be played April 5-9. In total, 34 titles will be handed out.


This year, Hockey Alberta is offering 2023 Provincial Championship merchandise. There are a number of items to choose from and “Champions 2023” can be added to any merchandise purchased after a provincials tournament. Any questions regarding merchandise can be directed to [email protected].

Shop Here >

News

Photo Credit: Prime Sport Photography


2023 Provincial Championship recap: Week one

Nineteen Provincial Champions were named during the first week of play.

With upsets, league rivalries, overtime and shootouts, the Hockey Alberta Provincial Championships presented by ATB saw it all, and it’s only week one.


2023 Hockey Alberta Provincial Tournaments

Tournament action began on Thursday, March 23 and continued through to Sunday. On Sunday, 34 teams prepared for the game of the season, with 17 skating away champions.

Championship Games

AFHL U18 AAA - Red Deer Sutter Fund Chiefs 4, Calgary Fire 3 (shootout)

U16 AA - NWCAA Bronks 2, Fort Saskatchewan Rangers 1

AEHL U15 AAA - Airdrie Xtreme 3, Calgary Bisons (CBHA) 2

AFHL U15 AA - Calgary Fire Red 3, Edmonton Pandas 2

U15 AA - Calgary NWCAA Stamps 6, Bow Valley Timberwolves 5 (overtime)

U15 Tier 1 - Cochrane 5, La Crete 4 (overtime)

U15 Tier 2 - 3 C’s Coyotes 7, St. Paul 6 (double overtime)

U15 Tier 3 - Elk Point Avalanche 5, High Level North Stars 4

U15 Tier 1 (NBC) - Springbank NBC 1 8, Trails West NBC 1 3

U15 Female A - GHC Outlaws 2, GHC Rangers 0

U15 Female B - Battle River Knights 5, GHC White 1

U13 Tier 1 - Okotoks 7, Glenlake 5

U13 Tier 2 - Drayton Valley 5, La Crete 3

U13 Tier 3 - Irvine 7, High Prairie 6

U13 Tier 4 - Delburne Outlaws 4, Fort Macleod Mavericks 3

U13 Female A - Cochrane 3, Grande Prairie 2 (overtime)

U13 Female B - Irma 10, St. Albert SA552 0


2023 Hockey Alberta League Playoffs

Going into the weekend, two champions had already been named through their league playoffs.

The Cochrane Chaos of the Alberta Junior Female Hockey League claimed the banner over the Sherwood Park Steele on Sunday, March 19, winning the best of five series in four games.

The Senior AAA division champs are the Innisfail Eagles after they swept the Stony Plain Eagles in three games.

The AEHL’s U18 AAA Calgary NW Flames lead the St. Albert Nektar Raiders two games in the best of five series. The Flames have a chance to seal the series, Wednesday March 29, in St. Albert. Games are available to stream live on HockeyTV.

In the Alberta Junior Hockey League, eight teams remain with series records at:

Okotoks 1, Brooks 1

Drumheller 1, Blackfalds 1

Bonnyville 2, Whitecourt 0

Spruce Grove 2, Sherwood Park 0

Play continues on Tuesday, March 28.


Provincial Championship Merchandise

This year, Hockey Alberta is offering 2023 Provincial Championship merchandise. There are a number of items to choose from and “Champions 2023” can be added to any merchandise purchased after a Provincials tournament. Any questions regarding merchandise can be directed to [email protected].

Shop Now >

Hockey Alberta News

News

It’s time for Provincial Championships

The 2022-23 hockey season all comes down to this, the Hockey Alberta Provincial Championships presented by ATB.

In total, 34 Provincial Champions will be crowned this year. Over three weekends, 30 divisions will battle it out in a tournament style format. While league play will determine four champions.

Tournament action begins March 23-26 with 112 teams set to take the ice in 17 divisions hosted in select locations across the province.

The first weekend of tournament play includes:

Meanwhile, two of four champions decided through league play have been determined.

The Cochrane Chaos of the Alberta Junior Female Hockey League claimed the banner over the Sherwood Park Steele on Sunday, March 19, winning the best of five series in four games.

The Senior AAA division champs are the Innisfail Eagles after they swept the Stony Plain Eagles in three games.

The final two divisions determined through league play are in the midst of playoffs.

Eight teams remain in the hunt for an Alberta Junior Hockey League (AJHL) title. With Blackfalds, Bonnyville, Brooks, Drumheller, Okotoks, Sherwood Park, Spruce Grove and Whitecourt advancing to the second round. The AJHL champion will be competing at the Centennial Cup.

The Alberta Elite Hockey League’s U18 AAA division has the Calgary NW Flames facing off against the St. Albert Nektar Raiders in the final round of the play offs. The winner advances to the Pacific playoffs in hopes of competing at the 2023 Men’s U18 National Club Championship (formerly the Telus Cup).

Alberta Female Hockey League (AFHL) and AEHL games are available to stream on HockeyTV.

Tournament action will continue through weekends March 30 – April 2 and April 6-9. For more information on Hockey Alberta Provincial Championships presented by ATB and to see the schedules of each division, visit haprovincials.ca.


This year, Hockey Alberta is offering 2023 Provincial Championship merchandise. There are a number of items to choose from and “Champions 2023” can be added to any merchandise purchased after a provincials tournament. Any questions regarding merchandise can be directed to [email protected].

Shop Here >

News

Coach of the Month - February

RED DEER – Hockey Alberta is announcing four coaches who are deserving of the recognition of Coach of the Month, presented by Players Bench Team Apparel.

This season’s Coaches of the Month are Russ Glover, Darcy Gulbraa, Shannon Humphrey and Ryan Robbins.


Russ Glover

Russ Glover - of the Vulcan U11 Hawks - has coached for six years.

“When my kids started playing I thought it was a perfect opportunity to get involved,” said Glover. “It’s a great way to pay it forward to the next generation and give kids the skills they can use to enjoy hockey for a lifetime.”

Glover’s philosophy is simple – work hard, have a good attitude and show up for your team. And he understands that everyone has a role to play.

“We have a player who likes to announce the kids’ names and numbers in the dressing room before each game, just like a professional announcer,” said Glover. “It’s become a pregame tradition for us. At the end, the rest of the team joins in together to announce him so he’s not left out.”

Throughout the season, Glover finds the rewards in watching each of his players succeed and progress. He sees their individual wins as team wins.

“Seeing kids hit their individual milestones over the season is inspiring,” said Glover. “Our team has been on a mission to make sure each kid scored this year. When the last player got his, the whole team lost it!”

When he’s not at the rink, you can find Glover with his family on the farm, camping, kayaking, biking and playing ball in the yard.

Darcy Gulbraa

When his son’s team needed a coach, Darcy Gulbraa stepped up and 12 years later he is still behind the bench.

A volunteer coach with the Irma Aces U11 Male and U13 Female teams, Gulbraa believes in the importance of a positive atmosphere.

“I once heard the job of a minor hockey coach is to help kids to love the game more when they leave the rink than when they got there,” said Gulbraa.

Some of Gulbraa’s most memorable moments come from watching his players grow their love of the game – for example, when a player scores their first goal or a team qualifies for a provincial championship.

“One of the biggest things I enjoy is watching the players develop from the start of the year to the end of the season,” said Gulbraa. “In a lot of cases it’s hard to believe they are the same player.”

Gulbraa cherishes the relationships he’s made, including those with the great coaches he had throughout his hockey career.

“If they wouldn’t have taken time out of their lives to coach, who knows if I would be on the ice doing it,” said Gulbraa.

Shannon Humphrey

Playing hockey their whole life, Shannon Humphrey wanted to be around the game. Now that Humphrey’s kids love hockey, coaching is the favourite way to hang out with them.

“I’m a goalie coach by choice and a head coach by necessity,” said Humphrey. “I was empowered by my association to step into the role and every day I’m reminded that the kids are the reason I do what I do.”

Humphrey has coached hockey for five years. With years of coaching experience in soccer, roller derby, baseball and curling, Humphrey had a lot to offer.

“I had some pretty great coaches growing up who taught me to love the game,” said Humphrey. “I’m simply passing on their teachings and building on the foundation those coaches built for me.”

Aside from the coaching role, Humphrey works with Blackfalds Minor Hockey Association’s Board of Directors as director for equity, diversity and inclusion.

“This season our team has learned how to stand up for each other, create visibility, and be very strong allies for all diverse identities,” said Humphrey. “They’ve sent the message that hockey is intended to be a safe space for everyone regardless of their identity.”

Humphrey’s passion for hockey shines through the pride shown for the players and the game.

“Not only are we all learning to love and respect the game, we are learning to love and respect each other on and off the ice,” said Humphrey. “It’s my job as a coach to make sure each player feels seen, heard, and empowered. This is their game, their team and their safe space. I’m just here to facilitate it.”

Ryan Robbins

For 15 years Ryan Robbins has volunteered his time to coaching. Currently the coach of Stettler’s U11 Female and U9 Oilers, Robbins also volunteers with the East Central Hockey School.

With over a decade of experience, locals know who to turn to when a coach is needed.

“One year, I wasn’t planning on coaching, but I helped with evaluations and after they were done the team didn’t have a coach,” said Robbins. “I was asked to take them on, which turned out to be an excellent opportunity. They were a great group of kids and we ended up winning provincials.”

Having good mentors, Robbins took an interest in coaching and officiating at a young age.

“My father coached me through the years, which laid some excellent groundwork for me now,” said Robbins. “But we had some really great recreation directors to learn from too.”

Robbins coaching philosophy is always moving forward, both in skills and athletes game play. As players move forward, Robbins enjoys watching the kids grow in their abilities as well as people.

News

Hockey Alberta Registration Fee changes for 2023-24

Hockey Alberta is implementing changes to its Registration Fee structure, as well as increasing the Hockey Alberta Registration Fee, effective for the 2023-24 season.

The Hockey Alberta Registration Fee is assessed for each registered Hockey Alberta participant (Team Official or Player). It is invoiced to registered Senior and Junior Teams, along with member Minor Hockey Associations, Accredited Schools, Pond Hockey, Recreational Hockey, and Para Hockey organizations.

The Hockey Alberta Registration Fee helps offset the costs associated with Hockey Alberta’s administration of operations, member service and development activities. The Registration Fee also includes designated allocations to the Facility and Technology Funds overseen by the Board of Directors.

For 2023-24, the following changes are being implemented:

  1. For Minor Hockey (including Accredited Schools), the Team Fee and Registration Fee structure is changing. The new structure incorporates the Team Fee into the Registration Fee for Minor Hockey (including Accredited Schools) and discontinues separate invoicing of the Team Fee, as both fees previously were allocated to cover similar types of expenses. The Team Fee continues to be invoiced separately for Junior and Senior division teams.
  2. Hockey Alberta is increasing the Registration Fee for all Players and Team Officials - except at the Intro to Hockey level. This increase is to help offset inflation. The change for Senior and Junior Hockey is $3 per individual. For Minor Hockey (excluding Accredited Schools), the change per individual is $5.50, which includes the merging of the Team Fee as noted above. For Accredited Schools, the change is $15.50 per individual, after merging the Team Fee.

IMPORTANT NOTES:

  1. The shift to the new Hockey Alberta Registration Fee structure was done to maintain similar revenue levels for Hockey Alberta and similar expenses for Minor Hockey members as previously existed with the separate Team Fee. The new structure also preserves lower costs for those entering the game at the Intro to Hockey and Recreational levels.
  2. Hockey Canada is finalizing insurance rates for the 2023-24 season. The rates listed in the following chart are subject to change. Hockey Alberta will update members when Hockey Canada’s fees are approved.

Full details are outlined in Information Bulletin 22:09, including a chart with provides the full breakdown of fees collected on behalf of Hockey Alberta and Hockey Canada, and the projected Total Fee per Participant. The chart will be updated once Hockey Canada fees are confirmed.

Information on Hockey Alberta’s finances is reported to the membership annually at the Annual General Meeting in Hockey Alberta’s Audited Financial Statements.

HOCKEY ALBERTA INFORMATION BULLETINS >

News

Alberta Hockey Hall of Fame calls the Class of 2023

RED DEER – Six individuals and the teams comprising a “decade of excellence” in women’s hockey are being called to the Alberta Hockey Hall of Fame (AHHF) as the Class of 2023.

This year’s class includes:

  • CHARLIE HUDDY – one of seven Edmonton Oilers who was a member of all five of the franchise’s Stanley Cup winning teams (1984, 1985, 1987, 1988, 1990), and the NHL’s first recipient of the Plus/Minor Award in 1983. He played for 11 seasons and then served as an assistant coach for 23 years in the NHL.
  • TIM HUNTER – with more than four decades spent in the NHL and WHL as a player and coach, he helped bring a new focus to smart technology to the sport. In 1989, he lifted the Stanley Cup with the Calgary Flames in 1989 and continues his engagement in the community as an active alumnus.
  • EARL INGARFIELD SR. – played in the NHL for 13 seasons, he was the first player selected in the Pittsburgh Penguins expansion draft. In retirement, Earl scouted and coached with the New York Islanders.
  • KAREN KOST – spent 34 years as an official and leader in training and mentoring officials across Alberta and Canada. Karen worked almost every level of hockey nationally and internationally.
  • BOBBY OLYNYK – a dedicated volunteer in the game for nearly 60 years. He is well known for his role as a builder and leader of what is now known as the Alberta Elite Hockey League U18 AAA division.
  • JOHN UTENDALE – the first Black hockey player to sign an NHL contract. While he never played in the NHL, John is considered a trailblazer in the game in Canada and United States. He was the first Black member of the U.S. men’s coaching staff as a member of the “Miracle on Ice” Olympic champions in 1980.
  • EDMONTON CHIMOS: “A DECADE OF EXCELLENCE” – the longest running Senior Women’s AAA hockey program in Alberta, the organization’s 1983-1993 era captured every Hockey Alberta Provincial Championship (Senior A, Female AA, Female AAA) and three Abby Hoffman Cup National Women’s championships (1984, 1985, 1992).

The Class of 2023 was selected based on their outstanding achievements, dedication and commitment to building hockey in Alberta in all aspects of the game.

“Once again, we have the opportunity to celebrate the rich hockey history in this great province,” said Al Coates, Chairmen of the Alberta Hockey Hall of Fame Committee. “It’s another outstanding class of inductees with an extensive list of achievements that reflect in the game today.”

The honoured inductees will be welcomed into the hall on Sunday, July 16 at the AHHF Induction Gala at the Coast Hotel in Canmore. Tickets for the AHHF Induction Gala are available to purchase on ahhf.ca.

Full biographies for the Class of 2023 can be found on the AHHF website.


Tickets >

Biographies >

AHHF Honoured Members >

News

Access Respect Group programs at no cost

Calling all Canadian hockey families and coaches! It has become apparent that Canadians want to make the game we all love more welcoming for everyone - especially our kids. That’s why Canadian Tire Corporation, Limited (“Canadian Tire”) is giving the hockey community access to several Respect Group programs at no cost from February 21st till April 30th.

CLICK HERE to access the Respect Group programs

PLEASE NOTE: Once the Respect in Sport (RIS) program under the Jumpstart platform has been completed, the certificate MUST be imported to the Hockey Alberta platform. Once the certificate has be imported, it will show on the Hockey Canada Registry (HCR) and can then be recognized by Hockey Alberta.

CLICK HERE to import a completed certificate

These critical tools are part of Canadian Tire and Respect Group’s ongoing commitment to players, parents, family members, caregivers, coaches and officials. They empower us to be the best we can be so we can all enjoy hockey together.

Here’s a quick snapshot of the first Programs being provided to all Hockey Branches and Member Partner organizations across the country.

Hockey Alberta News

These positive, proactive programs offer an opportunity, for all of us, to help ensure a safe and respectful hockey culture.

News

A Global Community

WETASKIWIN – The puck is set to drop on the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) Global Girls Game and a celebration of female hockey in central Alberta.

Leduc Minor Hockey is hosting Alberta’s segment of the Global Game in Wetaskiwin as the U11 Leduc Roughnecks take on Westakiwin WE401F at 1 pm on Saturday, February 18 at the Civic Centre.

The Global Girls Game is an IIHF initiative to unite the hockey community by having players from around the globe play in the same game. A cumulative score is kept around the world between Team White and Team Blue with a winner being declared after all games have been completed. Canada’s portion concludes on February 20, with a Rivalry Series Game between Canada and USA Women’s National Teams.

In Wetaskiwin, Hockey Canada has provided jerseys for each team featuring numbers worn by members of the 2022 Women’s World Hockey Championship team. Prior to the game, the U11 players will meet and mingle with the North Central Impact U15 AA team in the Alberta Female Hockey League. The Impact also will join the Roughnecks for pre-game warm-up.

Leduc is taking the IIHF Global Game a step further and engaging all levels of its female program to make it an unforgettable experience. Following the U11 game, the Impact will host Red Deer Sutter Fund Chiefs in an AFHL tilt, with the U11 players cheering on their new friends with cupcakes and chocolate milk to celebrate females in the sport. Events in Wetaskiwin will wrap up with a U18B female game between Leduc and Wetaskiwin.

Leduc’s female teams (U15 B, U18 AA, and U13 A) are also in action on Saturday at home, in Edmonton and Sherwood Park.

IIHF Global Girls Game >

News

Elite Male Pathway

The Elite Male Pathway Guide outlines the exclusive opportunities that are available to Alberta’s elite male hockey players registered with a Hockey Alberta member organization. These opportunities include the competition, coaching and development they experience on the ice, along with the supports and services available off the ice. Member organizations include Minor Hockey Associations, Accredited Schools, and Junior Leagues.

For complete document >

News

AFHL U15 AA and U13AA Franchises

Hockey Alberta’s Elite Female Hockey Committee has been reviewing the location and number of teams at each level of hockey within the Alberta Female Hockey League (AFHL).

On November 2, Hockey Alberta announced the addition of a new U13 AA division within the AFHL, as well as expansion of the U15 AA division, and officially opened an application process for Minor Hockey Associations (MHAs) to apply to host those teams.

After a thorough review of all applications, Hockey Alberta’s Elite Female Hockey Committee is excited to announce the addition of the following Host MHAs, effective for the 2023-24 season:

  1. U13 AA - 16 Teams
    • Host MHAs: Airdrie, Bonnyville, Calgary (3), Camrose, Edmonton (2), Grande Prairie, Leduc, Lethbridge, Lloydminster, Okotoks, Red Deer, Sherwood Park, and St. Albert
  2. U15 AA - Addition of 2 Teams
    • 1 in Calgary (3 total)
    • 1 in Edmonton (2 total)

The Elite Female Committee also identified the need to address the operational structure of the South Central recruitment area. The current structure included two Host MHAs separately operating teams within the same recruitment area and lacked unified leadership. After working with the Host MHAs, it was determined one Host MHA was required, and Airdrie MHA will take on the responsibility of hosting all U13 AA, U15 AA and U18 AA teams in the South Central recruitment area.

The Elite Female Hockey Committee is working with all Host MHAs to finalize details of program and league operations for the upcoming season. We will also continue to review the structure and alignment of U18 AAA and U18 AA, discussing a potential expansion in the 2024-25 season.


For questions or more information, emails can be submitted to:

Lise Cote
Chair, Elite Female Committee

Kendall Newell
Manager, Female Hockey


Information Bulletin 22-08 >

News

Hockey Alberta announces partnership with CoachThem

RED DEER - Hockey Alberta is excited to announce a new partnership with CoachThem as the organization’s official Coach Practice Planning Tool.

With this partnership, Hockey Alberta coaches will receive membership to the CoachThem platform at a discounted rate, including access to 1400 marketplace drills with video and helpful articles to better your game.

As the premier coach practice planning platform, CoachThem and Hockey Alberta will collaborate to bring a revolutionary coach planning tool to associations and coaches across Alberta.

“With Hockey Alberta’s drive to grow the game by improving their player’s experience, CoachThem will support the coaching community by empowering the game of hockey through technology. “, said Mike Weaver, NHL Alumni and CEO of CoachThem. “I am excited to simplify and inspire the coaching experience as they teach the next generation.”

The partnership will feature:

“Hockey Alberta is always looking for new ways to engage our associations and their coaches to provide them with high-quality resources,” said Justin Fesyk, Hockey Alberta’s Senior Manager of Hockey Development. “We are excited to work with CoachThem to enhance the coaching experience across the province.”


CoachThem is a web-based coaching platform for creating digital drills for a simple, fast, organized practice plan. With over 1400 free drills with video, you will never have to create another drill again. As the platform continues to evolve with 20k coaches, 600k drills created by coaches, 14 NHL teams and well over 170 associations, CoachThem is driven by innovation, simplicity, teamwork and their commitment to customers.

As one of the 13 members of Hockey Canada, Hockey Alberta is the governing body for all sanctioned minor hockey in the province of Alberta. Their mission is to create positive opportunities and experiences for all players through innovative leadership and exceptional service with a vision of creating Hockey for Life.

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It’s Your Game Contest

CONTEST: Show your commitment to making the game more inclusive by posing for a picture with one of Hockey Alberta’s anti-maltreatment banners or posters in your arena and you’ll be entered to win tickets for your hockey team to attend the Edmonton Oilers game on February 21.

The full package includes:

  • 52 tickets to the Rogers Place Sky Lounge Loft on February 21 vs. Philadelphia Flyers
  • Food and beverage for your entire team in the Sky Lounge
  • Transportation via bus to and from the game

SUBMIT YOUR ENTRY >

These tickets were donated by the Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation.

News

Sixteen Albertans named to NHL Central Scouting’s Midterm rankings

RED DEER - NHL Central Scouting has released its midterm rankings for the 2023 NHL draft with 16 Albertans making an appearance.

Two Albertan skaters landed in the top 32 of the North American skater rankings: Nate Danielson and Koehn Ziemmer.

Scott Ratzlaff and Jackson Unger are the two goaltenders to crack the top North American goaltenders.

The full list of Albertans appearing in the NHL Central Scouting midterm rankings can be found below:

Midterm Rank Player Position Team League
13 Nate Danielson Forward Brandon Wheat Kings WHL
20 Koehn Ziemmer Forward Prince George Cougars WHL
66 Aiden Fink Forward Brooks Bandits AJHL
80 Mazden Leslie Defence Vancouver Giants WHL
97 Saige Weinstein Defence Spokane Chiefs WHL
130 Kai Uchacz Forward Red Deer Rebels WHL
143 Morgan Brady Defence Spruce Grove Saints AJHL
179 Cole Miller Forward Edmonton Oil Kings WHL
193 Nicholas Wolfenberg Defence Okotoks Oilers AJHL
198 Cade Christenson Defence Sherwood Park Crusaders AJHL
203 Jake Sloan Forward Tri-City Americans WHL
215 Matteo Fabrizi Defence Red Deer Rebels WHL
217 Harrison Lodewyk Forward Prince Albert Raiders WHL
222 Ty Daneault Forward Drumheller Dragons AJHL
6 Scott Ratzlaff Goaltender Seattle Thunderbirds WHL
17 Jackson Unger Goaltender Moose Jaw Warriors WHL

News

Bates returns to Board of Directors

RED DEER - Michael Bates of Cochrane is returning to Hockey Alberta’s Board of Directors for 2023.

Bates is filling the Director vacancy created when it was announced at the 2022 Annual General Meeting that Fran Zinger was retiring. Zinger had one year remaining on her three-year term.

Bates previously completed a term as a Director at Large from 2018-2021.

He joins a Board which is comprised of chair Len Samletzki, vice chair Allan Mowbray, and directors Francois Gagnon, Bill Gourley, Kirstan Jewell, Karen Lee, Al-Amin Vira and Danielle Paradis.

Hockey Alberta News

For more information, go to the Board of Directors page on the Hockey Alberta website.

News

Female Hockey Day

CALGARY – Celebrate female hockey on Saturday, January 7!

Hockey Alberta is hosting Female Hockey Day, presented by ATB, at the Max Bell Centre in Calgary. In partnership with Girls Hockey Calgary, the day celebrates female hockey and bringing together supporters for the development, growth, and celebration of the game.

Female Hockey Day has something for everyone with a Try Hockey event, Try Goalie session, U11 and U13 Skills Competition, an officiating clinic, and Introduction to Coaching seminar taking place. As well, the day’s activities are highlighted by an Alberta Female Hockey League (AFHL) feature game.

At 12:30 P.M., The AFHL U18 AA division’s Calgary Fire White will take on the Airdrie Lightning. The game will be available to stream online at HockeyTV. With non-stop action, the game’s next generation of stars will step on the ice during the first intermission for a U7 scrimmage. During the second intermission, members of the Professional Women’s Hockey Players Association (PWHPA) will host a meet and greet, giving the girls a chance to meet their idols.

The schedule caps off with a U11 and U13 Skills Competition. Girls Hockey Calgary U11 Teal, U11 Red, U13 Silver, and U13 Spark will showcase their skills, with the demonstrations being done by the members of the PWHPA.

Across the province, other Female Hockey Day celebrations are taking place as well, with the Hockey Alberta Foundation supporting festivities planned in Leduc, Sherwood Park, and Whitecourt.

Celebrating Female Hockey Day in your own community? Share with us by tagging Hockey Alberta on social media and use the hashtag - #whyweplay.

For more information on Female Hockey Day, visit hockeyalberta.ca.

News

Photo Credit: Carmen Parsons


Inaugural U11 HADP Showcase set to begin in Red Deer

RED DEER – Hockey Alberta is set to host the inaugural U11 HADP Showcase in Red Deer, beginning Friday, January 6.

Eight teams from around the province will converge on the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre in Red Deer for a weekend tournament.

Teams involved in the showcase include:

Each team will play four games starting at 9:30am on Friday, with the championship game being held on Sunday at 2:00pm. All games will be streamed for free on HockeyTV.

SCHEDULE >


For the 2022-23 hockey season, Hockey Alberta has expanded the U11 AA Pilot Project province wide and renamed it the U11 Hockey Alberta Development Pilot (U11 HADP). The focus of the U11 HADP is to implement amended hosting structures, player movement rules, league scheduling and Coach and Player Development Standards.

U11 HADP Information >