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Photo courtesy of the World Junior A Challenge


Get your tickets now for the 2016 World Junior A Challenge!

BONNYVILLE — For Junior A hockey fans, Bonnyville is the place to be, Dec. 11-17, as the best players from Canada’s 10 Junior A leagues will be competing in the 2016 World Junior A Challenge.

And tickets are still available for the event — online and at the Bonnyville District & Centennial Centre box office.

Two Canadian teams and four international squads make up the two pools of three teams that will face off in the 11th edition of the tournament at the R.J. Lalonde Arena.

Canada East will be the first Canadian team to see action, taking on the Czech Republic in the tournament-opener on Sunday, Dec. 11, while Canada West will make its debut that night when it faces Switzerland.

Defending champions Team Canada West plays in Group A with Russia and Switzerland, while Team Canada East is in Group B with the Czech Republic and the United States.

This is the second time the event is held in an Alberta community since the tournament’s inception; Camrose hosted the World Junior A Challenge in 2008.

The first-place team in each group will receive a bye to the semifinals on Thursday, Dec. 15, with the second-place and third-place teams crossing over for the quarterfinals Wednesday, Dec. 14. The losers of the semifinals will meet for the bronze medal on Friday, Dec. 16, while the winners will face off for gold on Saturday, Dec. 17.

Since the first World Junior A Challenge in 2006, more than 260 NHL draft picks have played in the tournament, including 36 first-round selections. Canada West won gold at the first two tournaments, in 2006 and 2007, and also took the top prize in 2011 and 2015. The team also earned silver in 2008, 2009 and 2012, and won bronze in 2013. Canada East earned silver medals in 2006, 2007, 2010 and 2011, and claimed bronze in 2008.

For more information on the 2016 World Junior A Challenge, please visit HockeyCanada.ca/WJAC, or follow along via social media on Facebook or Twitter.

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Photo Credit: LA Media


Announcing Alberta Hockey Day: Celebrating the female game

GRANDE PRAIRIE - Hockey Alberta is proud to host its inaugural Alberta Hockey Day on January 21, 2017, to celebrate and showcase female hockey across the province.

This day will combine a number of on and off-ice events catered to both new and existing participants, focusing on fun, skills and friendships.

Grande Prairie will be the host site of Alberta Hockey Day’s main event, with special guests scheduled to attend, including two-time Olympic gold medallist and former Team Alberta player and coach Carla MacLeod.

Edmonton, Calgary, Leduc, Lloydminster, Medicine Hat, Lethbridge, Olds and Banff/Canmore will also host Alberta Hockey Day Events.

Event Details >

Hockey Alberta’s goal is to develop female players, coaches and officials who are currently in our program while introducing the sport to new participants. All sessions offered throughout the day will be at no cost to the participants, in an effort to connect our sport to a larger audience.

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Photo credit: Lethbridge Hurricanes


WHL Game Day Speaker Series - Lethbridge Hurricanes

LETHBRIDGE - Hockey Alberta is proud to partner with the Western Hockey League to present two more installments of the WHL Game Day Speaker Series with the Lethbridge Hurricanes.

These seminars are open to all local minor hockey coaches registered with Hockey Alberta. The seminar will allow for coaches to attend a Lethbridge Hurricanes home game, where participants will get a behind-the-scenes experience to talk and learn from WHL coaches. With both practical and theoretical learning experiences, this is a great educational opportunity for coaches.

Each seminar costs $45 per coach, and includes:

  • Hurricanes game ticket
  • One drink voucher
  • Chicken wings
  • Souvenir Lethbridge Hurricanes hat.

Both seminars take place at the home of the Hurricanes, the Enmax Centre, and feature a pre-game presentation from Hockey Alberta, a visit from the visiting team’s Coach, a ticket to watch the Hurricanes game, and a Q&A session after the game with members of the Lethbridge Hurricanes coaching staff.

Seminar dates, details, and registration information can be found below. Each seminar has a maximum capacity of 30 participants, and registration is on a first come, first serve basis.


Date: Wednesday, December 14 vs Kamploops Blazers
Visiting team presenter: Don Hay, Blazers Head Coach

Register >


Date: Saturday, February 4 vs Moose Jaw Warriors
Visiting team presenter: Tim Hunter, Warriors Head Coach

Register >


For more information, please contact Matt Weninger, Consultant, Regional Centre South

Hockey Alberta Foundation

Photo credit: LA Media


Nominations open for Alberta Hockey Hall of Fame

RED DEER – Nominations are now being accepted for the 2017 Induction Class of the Alberta Hockey Hall of Fame (AHHF).

The AHHF recognizes significant accomplishments and contributions by individuals, teams, and organizations in the sport of hockey in Alberta. Induction into the AHHF is one of the highest honours that can be bestowed upon a hockey participant in the province.

Nomination Package >

Nominees may be active or retired. To be eligible for consideration, the following minimum criteria must be met by a nominee:

  • Resided in Alberta for at least five years.
  • Made a significant impact to hockey during their time as an Alberta resident.
  • Exceptional service or contribution to the game of hockey in Alberta or at a national or international level.
  • Achieved significant personal, team and or professional accomplishment in the game.
  • Made an impact in the game beyond a local or regional level
  • Received significant other recognitions (for example, Canadian Sport Hall of Fame, Hockey Hall of Fame, Alberta Sports Hall of Fame, national or International champion or medalist, major individual award).
  • Groups/Teams must have achieved a significant result at a national or international level or have impacted on a provincial level under exceptional circumstances.

Deadline for nominations is January 30. The 2017 Induction class will be honoured in July at the AHHF Awards Gala in Canmore.

Hockey Alberta and the Hockey Alberta Foundation oversee the AHHF, and host the annual Awards Gala. The AHHF Gallery is located at the Alberta Sports Hall of Fame and Museum in Red Deer, and features memorabilia showcasing the history of the sport in Alberta, with a focus on items from each year’s induction class members.

AHHF Honoured Members >

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Chevrolet Power of Play is back!

RED DEER - Peewee coaches across Alberta still have time to register for the Chevrolet Power of Play Program for the 2016-17 season.

Registration is now open to all Peewee teams in Alberta, and a limited number of coach kits are available on a first come, first served basis.

Register >

Registration is intended to be completed by the team’s coach for Hockey Canada verification purposes.

Each team accepted into the Chevrolet Power of Play program will receive a coach’s kit, which includes a premium coach’s hockey bag with a set of:

  • 20 rolls of hockey tape
  • 20 sets of skate laces with inspirational words from Team Canada gold medalists
  • 20 ‘Most Inspirational Player’ awards for coaches to give out to players who best display these values, and
  • 20 pucks.

Go to ChevroletHockey.com for more information on the Chevrolet Power of Play program.

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Two more Alberta officials assigned to World Junior A Challenge

RED DEER – A total of five officials from Alberta will now be representing their province at the World Junior A Challenge in Bonnyville, as two more have been assigned to work the event.

Referee Fraser Lawrence (Edmonton) and Linesman Chad Huseby (Red Deer) will join previously-assigned Referee Cody Rude (Edmonton), and Linesmen Deion Foster (Edmonton) and Jared Mackey (Calgary) at the annual international Junior A challenge.

Hockey Alberta and its Provincial Officials Committee congratulate all five officials for having their hard work rewarded with a chance to represent Alberta at the World Junior A Challenge.

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Strathmore, Red Deer to host inaugural AFHL All-Star Games

RED DEER - The Alberta Female Hockey League (AFHL) is pleased to host the inaugural AFHL Midget and Bantam Elite All Star Games on January 14.

To promote the league and female hockey across the province, the events will be hosted in two separate locations; the Bantam Elite All-Star game will be hosted in Strathmore at the Strathmore Family Centre at 1:45 p.m., and the Midget Elite All-Star game will be held in Red Deer at the Penhold Multiplex at 1:30 p.m.

In addition to the All Star games, the host Associations will be offering development clinics for female athletes within their communities.

AFHL Coaches will be nominating players (two forwards and one defense) that best represent the values of their team to represent their programs in the inaugural AFHL All Star Game. Goaltenders will be selected based on statistical ranking from the first of the season (December 23 cut off).

The coaches chosen to represent the North and the South will be from the first and second placed teams within each division at the Winter Break. The All-Star players will be announced in mid-December.

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Photo courtesy the Camrose Kodiaks/AJHL


Hockey Alberta Presents the AJHL Game Day Speaker Series

RED DEER - Hockey Alberta is proud to partner with the Alberta Junior Hockey League and the Camrose Kodiaks to present the AJHL Game Day Speaker Series for local coaches.

The Speaker Series features two game-day seminar sessions, with each session offering a unique professional development opportunity to learn from high profile junior coaches - as well as a chance to catch the Camrose Kodiaks in action.

Both seminars take place at the EnCana Arena in Camrose. There are only 30 seats available per seminar, and registration is on a first-come, first-served basis. Registration is $40 (plus GST) per coach per seminar, and includes the following ($200 value):

  • 1.5 hour presentation from Hockey Alberta led by Coach Mentor Fran Gow
  • Pre- and post-game contributions from the coaches for both AJHL teams
  • Food/drink voucher
  • A ticket to the game
  • Hockey Alberta resource package, Hockey Alberta gift and other giveaway items

Date: Thursday, November 24 vs Olds Grizzlys
Presentation topic: Game and Bench Management
AJHL Presenters: pre-game session: Dana Lattery, Olds; post-game session: Boris Rybalka, Camrose.


Date: Tuesday, January 17 vs Brooks Bandits
Presentation topic: Special Teams - Power Play vs Penalty Kill
AJHL Presenters: pre-game session: Ryan Papaionnou, Brooks; post-game session: Boris Rybalka, Camrose.

Register for January 17 >


For more information, please contact Jesse Hale, Manager, Hockey Development.

News

Coach of the Month - October

RED DEER - Hockey Alberta’s Coach of the Month for October 2016 is Charles Hainsworth of Eckville.

Charles only started coaching hockey last season, but has been a coach for a total of four years. This season, he is both the Assistant Coach for the Eckville Novice Eagles and Head Coach of the Eckville Atom Eagles.

“I started when my kids were getting involved with sports and I wanted to be there to motivate and encourage them" said Hainsworth. "As my coaching progresses, I want all the kids to have the same opportunities. I enjoy volunteering my time for local organizations.”

“He provides more enthusiasm than one can imagine, always showing up well prepared and proving to be a great role model, even the parents are motivated by him,” said a parent and member of his coaching staff, who nominated Charles for the award. “Charles wants his coaching to provide the kids with the tools to not only be better hockey players but good members of society.”


For more details on Hockey Alberta’s Coach of the Month, click here.

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Photo credit: LA Media


2018 Alberta Cup bid guideline and application package now available

RED DEER – Hockey Alberta is now accepting bids to host the 2018 Alberta Cup, set for April 25-29, 2018.

2018 Alberta Cup Bid Guidelines Package >

The Alberta Cup is the premier event in the province that helps identify the top bantam-aged players in Alberta. In addition to player evaluations, the competition is also an opportunity for administrators, coaches, athletic trainers and officials to be evaluated for future positions within the Team Alberta Program.

The event has a positive economic impact on the host community, providing a great opportunity to generate revenue for local organizations while enhancing the profile of the host community.

The deadline to submit a bid to host the 2018 Alberta Cup is February 1, 2017.

For more information, please contact Danielle Kraichy, Manager, Marketing and Events.

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Introducing the Hockey Alberta Coach Workshop Series

LETHBRIDGE/MEDICINE HAT – Hockey Alberta has partnered with the Lethbridge Minor Hockey Association, and the Medicine Hat Minor Hockey Association to offer a series of coach development workshops, hosted by Hockey Alberta’s South Regional Centre.

The Coach Workshop Series will equip coaches with the tools to better teach fundamental skills and team tactics, improve player evaluation skills, and provide new ideas on how to deliver a practice and to develop their ability to progress and regress drills to best suit their athletes.

The seminars are free of charge and open to coaches of all levels. To RSVP, please contact Matt Weninger, Consultant, Hockey Alberta South Regional Centre.


Lethbridge

Date/Time Topic Presenter
Nov 14, 7:30-9:30 p.m. Practice Expectations and Player Habits Mike Craig, Lethbridge Hurricanes (WHL)
Nov 28, 7:30-9:30 p.m. Details of Defensive Hockey Fran Gow, Hockey Alberta
Dec 5, 7:30-9:30 p.m. Where Do Goals Come From? - Offensive Play Fran Gow, Hockey Alberta
Dec 12, 6:30-8:45 p.m. Goaltending Skills and Development Matt Weninger, Hockey Alberta
Jan 9, 7:30-9:30 p.m. Developing Defensemen Bryan Maxwell, Former NHL/WHL Player and Coach
Jan 23, 7:30-9:30 p.m. Being and Building Leaders Josh Hoetmer, Alberta Sport Development Centre SW
Feb 6, 7:30-9:30 p.m. Scouting and Player Evaluation Wade Klippenstein, Colorado Avalanche (NHL)

Medicine Hat

Date/Time Topic Presenter
Nov 29, 7:00-9:00 p.m. Details of Defensive Hockey Fran Gow, Hockey Alberta
Dec 6, 7:00-9:00 p.m. Where Do Goals Come From? - Offensive Play Fran Gow, Hockey Alberta
Dec 13, 6:00-9:30 p.m. Goaltending Skills and Development Matt Weninger, Hockey Alberta
Jan 10, 6:00-9:30 p.m. Developing Defensemen Bryan Maxwell, Former NHL/WHL Player and Coach
Jan 24, 7:00-9:00 p.m. Being and Building Leaders Josh Hoetmer, Alberta Sport Development Centre SW
Feb 7, 7:00-9:00 p.m. Scouting and Player Evaluation Wade Klippenstein, Colorado Avalanche (NHL)

News

Photo: Hockey Canada Images


Alberta beats Saskatchewan, finishes fifth at U18 Nationals

REGINA - Team Alberta defeated Saskatchewan 6-4 Saturday afternoon to finish the National Women’s U18 Championship in fifth place.

Alberta took a 2-1 lead out of the first period thanks to goals from Chloé Puddifant and Courtney Kollman,and led 4-2 heading into the third after Taylor Sawka and Tyra Meropoulis scored in the second period. Saskatchewan made tied the game with goals just 15 seconds apart early in the third, before Dara Greig put Alberta ahead for good six minutes later. Kollman later netted her second goal of the game with an empty Saskatchewan net. Sawka was named Team Alberta’s Player of the Game.

In her second start for Alberta, goaltender Camryn Drever made 33 saves to earn her first win of the tournament. Both Drever and Amanda Zeglen finished the tournament with a 1-1 record in net.

Team Alberta Roster > | Box Score > | Game One Results: Quebec 6, Alberta 2 > | Game Two Results: Alberta 2, Manitoba 1 > | Game Three Results: B.C. 3, Alberta 1 >

The fifth place finish is a notable improvement on last year’s eight place finish for Team Alberta, while Saskatchewan moved up one spot from last year’s results, from seventh to sixth.

For stats, a full schedule, and more information on the U18 Nationals, click here.

News

Photo: Hockey Canada Images


Team Alberta loses 3-1 to B.C.

REGINA – Team Alberta fell 3-1 to Team B.C. on Friday morning, missing out on a semi-final berth at the National Women’s U18 Championships.

B.C. got off to a hot start with two goals in the first ten minutes of the game, before Ireland Perrott answered for Alberta to make it a 2-1 game. Following a scoreless second period, B.C. put up an insurance marker seven minutes into the third for a 3-1 final.

Amanda Zeglen put up her second-straight 30-plus save performance, stopping 31 shots as Team Alberta was out-shot 34-28. Forward Courtney Kollman was named Alberta’s Player of the Game.

Team Alberta Roster > | Box Score > | Game One Results: Quebec 6, Alberta 2 > | Game Two Results: Alberta 2, Manitoba 1 >

After finishing third in their pool with a 1-2- record, Team Alberta will wrap up tournament play Saturday at noon in the fifth-place game at noon.

For stats, a full schedule, and more information on the U18 Nationals, click here.

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Photo: Hockey Canada Images


Team Alberta edges Manitoba 2-1

REGINA – Team Alberta evened its record at 1-1, with a hard-fought 2-1 win over Team Manitoba on Thursday morning at the 2016 National Women’s U18 Championship.

Captain Taylor Sawka opened the scoring half-way through the second period to give Team Alberta a 1-0 lead. Ashton Bell tied the game eight minutes into the third period for Manitoba.But, Alberta took advantage of some good fortune, tallying what proved to the game-winner less than two minutes later on an own-goal by Manitoba. Tyra Meropoulis was credited with the goal.

Amanda Zeglen stood tall in net for Team Alberta as Manitoba fired 38 shots her way, including a barrage of 21 shots in the third period alone. She was named Team Alberta’s Player of the Game for her 37-save performance.

Team Alberta Roster > | Box Score > | Game One Results: Quebec 6, Alberta 2 >

Team Alberta finishes round-robin play Thursday morning at 9 am against Team B.C..

For stats, a full schedule, and more information on the U18 Nationals, click here.

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Photo; Hockey Canada Images


Team Alberta falls 6-2 to Quebec

REGINA – Team Alberta opened the 2016 National Women’s U18 Championship with a 6-2 loss to Team Quebec on Wednesday afternoon.

Quebec got off to a quick 2-0 lead in the first five minutes of the game, before Alberta answered back with a power-play goal from Emily Moore. Quebec would go on to score three unanswered goals before Dara Greig replied for Alberta. Defender Alexa McMillan was named Team Alberta’s Player of the Game.

Quebec out-shot Alberta 35-16, with goaltender Camryn Drever making 29 stops. Her counterpart, Édith D’Astous-Moreau, stopped 14 of 16 shots for the win.

Team Alberta Roster > | Box Score >

Up next for Team Alberta is a 9 a.m. match-up against Team Manitoba on Thursday morning. Manitoba is coming off a narrow 3-2 loss to Team B.C. on Wednesday morning.

For stats, a full schedule, and more information on the U18 Nationals, click here.

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2016 National Women’s U18 Championship begins in Regina

REGINA – The quest for gold for Team Alberta’s U18 Female team starts now, as the 2016 National Women’s U18 Championship kicks off in Regina.

Team Alberta opens play today (Wednesday) at noon against Team Quebec, followed by back-to-back 9 a.m. match-ups on Thursday and Friday against Team Manitoba and Team B.C., respectively, to close out round-robin play. Semi-final and consolation round games are set for Saturday, with the gold and bronze medal games to be played on Sunday.

Team Alberta U18 Roster >

The five-day tournament sees eight teams – Alberta, host Saskatchewan, Atlantic, British Columbia, Manitoba, Quebec, Ontario Blue, and reigning champs, Ontario Red – go head-to-head for national supremacy.

All preliminary-round games, placement games, semifinals, and the bronze-medal game will be streamed live online at www.hockeycanada.ca/nwu18c, while TSN will broadcast the gold-medal game Sunday, Nov. 13 starting at 5 pm Mountain Time.

For a full schedule, and more information on the U18 Nationals, click here.

Home Ice Feature

(From left) Team Alberta Head Coach Carla Macleod, Goalie/Video Coach Amanda Tapp, and Assistant Coach Cassea Schols.


All roads lead back to (Team) Alberta

REGINA – This year’s National Women’s U18 Championships will be a blast from the past for a trio of Team Alberta coaches.

Head Coach Carla MacLeod, Assistant Coach Cassea Schols, and Goalie/Video Coach Amanda Tapp come into the tournament sharing the same distinction – coaching the team they once suited up for.

Having represented Team Alberta twice at the Canada Winter Games in 1995 (as a 12 year-old) and in 1999, MacLeod says it’s an honour to return to her roots.

“It’s pretty awesome, actually,” she said. “You know, you look back on your ‘good old days,’ and obviously, having an opportunity to play for Team Alberta was a major step in my career when I was a younger player, and memorable. So, to fast forward here and to have the opportunity to work with the young players here in Alberta and to be a part of Team Alberta again, it’s very special.”

Along with her Team Alberta experience, MacLeod brings a winning pedigree to the program, with numerous international medals to her name as a member of Team Canada, most notably back-to-back Olympic gold medals in 2006 and 2010.

“I think what you learn from sports, regardless of what level you play, is that the values of sport are what matter, and that’s making sure you’re a good teammate and taking care of the people around you,” MacLeod said. “Of course these girls have dreams about winning Nationals, and we’re going to do everything we can to help them reach those dreams, without a doubt, but I think ensuring that the experience we provide them is a positive one is what’s most critical.”

For Tapp, 2016 will mark her fourth year as part of the Team Alberta staff, and the second straight year coaching alongside MacLeod, her teammate at the 1999 Canada Winter Games.

Tapp says, whether it’s on the ice or behind the bench, representing her province never gets old.

“It has been an absolute privilege every single time I’ve been asked to represent Team Alberta,” Tapp said. “I still remember the first time I had the honour of putting on the (Team Alberta) jersey and taking to the ice alongside the very best players in our province. For most of us, the U-18 National Championships was our first taste of high performance hockey at its best, both on and off the ice. Hockey Alberta has given me many opportunities to study the sport and receive mentorship from the best in the game. I will forever be in debt to Hockey Alberta for all it has done for me, both as a player and coach. ”

A member of Team Alberta at the 2007 Canada Winter Games, Schols is set to make her coaching debut for the program she attributes a large part of her success to.

“To give back to the program that helped me grow into the person that I am and the hockey player that I was has been the greatest honour,” Schols said. “Hockey Alberta and all of the coaches that have come through the program devote so much of their time and energy to each and every player to make sure they achieve their best, and after coming up through the program, I wanted to be a coach that gave the same time and devotion that was given to me.”

While the entire Team Alberta staff brings a wealth of knowledge from all sides of the game, MacLeod says the trio of Team Alberta alumnae can bring their personal experience to the program.

“Our whole staff is awesome, and really dedicated, and certainly for Amanda, Cassea and myself, we get to relive our glory days a little more - we keep bringing them up anyways. We all thought we were hot stuff back in the day, so it makes for some good laughs,” MacLeod said. “There’s an ownership to the program, in a sense, because we took pride in it as a player, and certainly as a coach, you want to do right by Hockey Alberta and Team Alberta, and what that program has done for us. I think for the three of us, it’s a unique opportunity; it’s a special occasion for us. It’s not the main focus, by any means, but every once in a while we take the time to appreciate where we’re at and the opportunity we’ve been given.”

Team Alberta opens the National Women’s U18 Championships Wednesday at noon against Team Quebec. For a full schedule, and more information on the U18 Nationals, click here.


Home Ice Feature stories will focus on interesting stories about the individuals and groups who make a difference within the hockey community in Alberta. If you have a suggestion for a Home Ice Feature story, email info@hockeyalberta.ca.

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Team Alberta alumnus and World U17 Hockey Challenge All-Star Ty Smith (left) celebrates a goal with his Team Canada Black teammate. (Photo courtesy of Hockey Canada)


Team Alberta alumni earn silver medals at 4 Nations Cup and World U17 Hockey Challenge

JARVENPAA, FINLAND – Former Team Alberta goaltender Emerance Maschmeyer earned yet another medal in international competition on Sunday, bringing home silver with Team Canada at the 4 Nations Cup following a 5-3 loss to the United States.

It’s the second silver medal in as many years for Maschmeyer and Team Canada, having narrowly missed out on gold last year against the U.S..


SAULT STE. MARIE, ONTARIO – Four skaters from the 2015 gold medal-winning Team Alberta U16 squad came away with a silver medal at the World U17 Hockey Challenge after a narrow 2-1 loss to Sweden.

Ty Smith, Eric Florchuk, Sean Comrie and Chase Wouters all helped Team Canada Black reach the final game of the tournament, and came up just one goal short of earning a second straight gold medal for Canada. With two goals and two assists in six games, Smith was named one of the tournament’s All-Star defencemen.

In total, nine Team Alberta alumni suited up for the World U17 Hockey Challenge: Jonathan Tychonick, Elijah Brown and Tristen Nielsen finished in fourth place with Team Canada White, while Carl Stankowski and Josh Tarzwell finished right behind in fifth place with Team Canada Red.

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On-ice study: smaller ice surfaces and skating development

In August 2016, Hockey Alberta partnered with Powerscout Hockey and St. Albert Minor Hockey to conduct a study on the effectiveness of smaller ice surfaces in skill development. The study featured 40 Initiation-aged players (five- and six-year-olds) who participated in a series of tests to collect data on a number of game and practice scenarios.

Hockey Alberta has worked with Minor Hockey Association Development Directors over the past couple of years to implement the Initiation guidelines. As part of that process, Hockey Alberta has received feedback that asks whether the smaller surface limits skating development, rather than enhancing it.

With regard to skating development, specific data for skating speed and acceleration was collected from the following scenarios:

• 200-foot sprints
• cross-ice games
• half-ice games, and
• a full ice game.

Overall, an analysis of the data and observation of the on-ice sessions reinforce that using a smaller ice surface at the Initiation level helps in the overall positive development of skating skills and skating acceleration for our youngest players, thereby better preparing them for when they are old enough to move to higher levels of hockey.

To read more about the findings from this study, click here.

News

Three Alberta officials selected for the World Junior A Challenge

RED DEER – Three Alberta officials will have the opportunity to represent their province on home soil at the 2016 World Junior A Challenge in Bonnyville.

Referee Cody Rude (Edmonton), along with Linesmen Deion Foster (Edmonton) and Jared Mackey (Calgary) have received the assignment to officiate the annual international Junior A challenge.

Hockey Alberta and its Provincial Officials Committee congratulate all three officials for having their hard work rewarded with a chance to represent Alberta at the World Junior A Challenge.

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Coach of the Month - September

The first coach of the month award for the 2016-17 season goes to Josh Gork of Edmonton.

Josh is the head coach for the KC West Peewee Ice Wolves. This is his third year head coaching, and he has previously coached teams at the Peewee and Atom levels.

“He is just a volunteer, his son is two years old and he doesn’t have a child in the club. He just does it for the love of the game and the kids.” said a parent from the team, who nominated Josh for this award. “Josh is genuinely a kind hearted man. You can see this in the way he works with all the kids and how he deals with the parents, it is just so welcoming.”

“I believe that hockey should be fun as well as competitive.” Josh said, when asked about his coaching philosophy. “I try to take bottom players and develop and shape them into the top team players. I start with the fundamentals and push the kids towards more advanced drills as a team. We win as a team and we lose as a team.”


For more details on Hockey Alberta’s Coach of the Month, click here.

Home Ice Feature

Team Alberta forward Carson Dyck, with his father Mike, a former Team Alberta Head Coach.


Carson and Mike Dyck: Team Alberta’s first father-son combo

CALGARY – When Hockey Alberta named Carson Dyck to its 2016 U16 Male roster in September, he and his father Mike became a part of Team Alberta history.

With Carson suiting up at the Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup, and Mike serving as Head Coach of the silver-medal winning U16 Male squad at the 2015 Canada Winter Games, the pair became the first ever father-son duo to represent Team Alberta.

“It’s pretty cool,” said Carson. “I try to follow in his footsteps a lot; he’s a big influence in my life. He knows a lot about this kind of stuff, obviously has great knowledge, so I look to him for a lot of advice.”

The Dyck family hails from Lethbridge, where Carson, a 2016 second-round pick of the Swift Current Broncos, currently plays for the Lethbridge Hurricanes of the Alberta Minor Midget AAA Hockey League.

“I was really happy for him, I was proud of him,” Mike said of Carson being named to Team Alberta. “Having this experience a couple of years ago, I’m obviously very excited for him that he gets to experience playing for his province, and playing in a competition like this is only going to make him a better hockey player, and a better person.”

Mike came into his role with Team Alberta in 2015 with a lofty coaching pedigree, spending 11 years coaching in the Western Hockey League – three of those as the head coach of the Lethbridge Hurricanes. Mike definitely left a lasting impression on the Team Alberta program.

“In his time with Team Alberta, Mike led with passion, integrity and professionalism, displaying the Alberta Built characteristics to the highest regard,” said Tim Leer, the Director of Operations for Team Alberta at the 2015 Canada Winter Games. “He came into a Team Alberta program that already had a strong foundation, and he built on it, raising the bar for those to follow. The staff and players from that team still talk about their experience at the Canada Winter Games, and that is a testament to Mike’s leadership.”

Given his dad’s track record with Team Alberta, Carson definitely felt a bit of pressure during the entire evaluation process, and heading into the U16 Challenge.

“He left some pretty big shoes to fill, he had a lot of success with Team Alberta,” he said. “But it feels good with him watching, because he can give me lots of advice after the games.”

Mike, who made the trip north to Calgary to watch his son compete with Team Alberta, said he’ll be taking in the competition from the perspective of both a former coach, and a parent.

“Normally I enjoy watching the game, and obviously watching both teams, and watching how coaches respond to one another,” he said. “But obviously, now I have a vested interest. I’m always cheering for Team Alberta, but now with my son playing, it’s way more of a fan-feel for me now, that’s for sure.”


Hockey Alberta is proud to unveil a new section at hockeyalberta.ca. Home Ice Feature stories will focus on interesting stories about the individuals and groups who make a difference within the hockey community in Alberta. If you have a suggestion for a Home Ice Feature story, email info@hockeyalberta.ca.

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Carter Chorney (left) celebrates his gold medal-winning overtime goal with his Team Alberta teammates. (Photo courtesy The WHL/LA Media)


Team Alberta wins U16 gold in overtime thriller

CALGARY - Team Alberta’s penchant for the dramatic was on display once again, skating away with gold at the 2016 Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup after a 3-2 overtime win over Team BC.

Carter Chorney played the hero for Team Alberta, scoring the medal-winning goal just 31 seconds in to the extra frame.

Team Alberta jumped out to a 2-0 with goals from Ethan Browne and Dylan Holloway, and took a 2-1 lead into the third period after Ethan Leyh replied for Team BC. Alex Swetlikoff knotted the score at two with just five minutes left in the game, setting up a dramatic, albeit short, overtime battle.

Goaltender Taylor Gauthier stood tall for Team Alberta in net, stopping 32 of 34 shots en route to a gold medal. Roman Basran took the overtime loss for BC, making 26 saves on 29 shots.

"We got the job done today, it was a close game," said Head Coach Bram Stephen. "All week, there were certain points in games, in the Saskatchewan game they tied it up late, and in this game (BC) tied it up late, and it wasn’t easy, none of the games were. They all seemed to come together in key moments, the group got closer as the week went on, and they played a strong team game."

Boxscore > | Game 1 Recap > | Game 2 Recap > | Game 3 Recap > | Team Alberta Roster >

Chorney fittingly was named Team Alberta’s player of the game for his overtime heroics, while Leyh earned the honours for BC.

The gold medal is the third in a row for Alberta at the Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup, and fifth medal overall in the tournament’s six-year history.

Earlier on Sunday afternoon, Team Manitoba took the bronze medal after defeating Team Saskatchewan 4-1.


2016 Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup All-Star Team

Goaltender – Byron Fancy (Alberta)
DefencemanKaedan Korczak (Saskatchewan)
Defenceman – Braden Schneider (Saskatchewan)
Forward – Logan Barlage (Saskatchewan)
Forward – Peyton Krebs (Alberta)
Forward – Joshua Williams (British Columbia)

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Photo courtesy of The WHL/LA Media


Team Alberta edges BC - earns berth in final

CALGARY – Team Alberta will defend the Western Canada U16 Challenge crown after a 3-2 victory over Team BC on Friday night.

Connor Bouchard scored the winning goal with just over six minutes to play, as Team Alberta finished the round-robin portion of the tournament with a perfect 3-0 record. Ethan Browne and Dylan Holloway assisted on the game-winner.

Brayden Tracey took care of the rest Team Alberta’s offence with his third and fourth goals of the tournament to erase an early 1-0 BC lead. Tracey got his first of the game with less than three minutes remaining in the second period, on assists from Peyton Krebs and Kirby Dach, and followed that with a penalty shot tally just over a minute into the third period.

BC tied the game 2-2 three minutes later, setting the stage for Bouchard’s winner. Joshua Williams scored both goals for Team BC.

Byron Fancy earned the win in net for Team Alberta, stopping 25 of 27 shots. Roman Basran took the loss in the BC net.

Boxscore > | Game 1 Recap > | Game 2 Recap > | Team Alberta Roster >

Tracey and Williams were named the players of the game.

Team Alberta advances directly to the championship final on Sunday at 1 pm. They will play the winner of Saturday’s semi-final between Team BC and Team Saskatchewan. Saskatchewan earned its semi-final berth with a 3-2 overtime win over Team Manitoba Friday afternoon.

For more stats, schedule and ticket information for the Western Canada U16 Challenge, click here.

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Photo courtesy of The WHL/LA Media


Team Alberta stays perfect with 5-1 win over Manitoba

CALGARY – After narrowly escaping with a win against Saskatchewan to open the Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup, Team Alberta left nothing to chance on Thursday night, taking down Manitoba 5-1 to move to a perfect 2-0 record.

Manitoba struck first just 1:32 into the game, but Alberta responded with five unanswered goals to skate away with a victory.

Brayden Tracey paced Team Alberta with a pair of goals, while Carter Souch had two points of his own with a goal and an assist.

In his first start of the tournament, netminder Byron Fancy stopped all but one of the 31 shots sent his way by Manitoba. Fancy’s counterpart Danton Belluk also made 30 saves, allowing five goals on 35 shots.

Boxscore > | Game 1 Recap > | Team Alberta Roster >

With an assist on the game-winning goal by Ethan Browne, defenceman Bowen Byram was named the Player of the Game for Team Alberta. Manitoba blueliner Michael Ladyman earned the honours for his team.

The win sets up an exciting match-up with Team B.C. on Friday night, as both teams come into the game a perfect 2-0. The winner of Friday’s game will finish in first place, and will advance straight to Sunday’s gold medal final. Game time is 6:30 p.m. at the Markin MacPhail Centre at WinSport.

For more stats, schedule and ticket information for the Western Canada U16 Challenge, click here.

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Photo courtesy of the Red Deer Rebels


Hockey Alberta Presents: Rebels Game Day Coaches Series

RED DEER – A unique learning opportunity awaits minor hockey coaches in Central Alberta with Hockey Alberta’s new Rebels Game Day Coaches Series.

The exciting new partnership between Hockey Alberta and the Red Deer Rebels of the Western Hockey League will offer five different seminars between November and February, offering the chance to learn from some of the top coaches in the game.

Each seminar costs $40 per coach, and include the following ($200 value):

  • A ticket to the Red Deer Rebels game
  • Food/drink voucher
  • 1.5 hour presentation from Hockey Alberta
  • Hockey Alberta resource package
  • Hockey Alberta gift and other giveaway items

All five seminars take place at the home of the Rebels, the Enmax Centrium, and feature a pre-game presentation from one of Hockey Alberta’s Coach Mentors, Fran Gow or Barry Medori, a visit from the visiting team’s Coach, a ticket to watch the Rebels game, and a Q&A session after the game with Brent Sutter, Head Coach and General Manager of the Red Deer Rebels, along with other Rebels staff.

Seminar dates, details, and registration information can be found below. Each seminar has a maximum capacity of 20 participants, and registration is on a first come, first serve basis.


Date: Friday, November 18 vs Medicine Hat Tigers
Presentation topic: Team Building/Culture with Barry Medori
Visiting team presenter: Shaun Clouston, Tigers Head Coach and General Manager.


Date: Wednesday, November 30 vs Saskatoon Blades
Presentation Topic: Linking Practice to Game with Fran Gow
Visiting team presenter: Dean Brockman, Blades Head Coach

Register >


Date: Tuesday, December 13 vs Kamploops Blazers
Presentation Topic: Creating Offense with Fran Gow
Visiting team presenter: Don Hay, Blazers Head Coach

Register >


Date: Saturday, January 21 vs Victoria Royals
Presentation topic: Defensive Play with Fran Gow
Visiting team presenter: Dave Lowry, Royals Head Coach

Register >


Date: Wednesday, February 1 vs Lethbridge Hurricanes
Presentation topic: Player Habits and the Little Things with Barry Medori
Visiting team presenter: Brent Kisio, Hurricanes Head Coach

Register >


For more information, please contact Jesse Hale, Manager, Hockey Development.

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Photo courtesy of The WHL/LA Media


Buzzer-beater leads Team Alberta past Saskatchewan

CALGARY – With overtime all but a certainty, Team Alberta opened the Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup with a 4-3 victory over Saskatchewan, thanks to Dylan Holloway’s goal with 2.6 seconds left in regulation.

Alberta jumped out to an early 2-0 lead, but Saskatchewan pulled within one late in the first, and tied it in the dying minutes of the second period. Team Alberta took the lead again in the third, only to see Saskatchewan tie it yet again, setting up the dramatic finish from Holloway.

Boxscore > | Team Alberta Roster >

"I thought we came out really strong in the first period," said Head Coach Bram Stephen. "We were sharp, we were snappy, we were playing hard at both ends of the ice, and we were engaged. It probably went that way until about mid-way through the second, and then we started getting a little bit loose in our structure and discipline, we had to kill off some penalties, and that could’ve been a bit better."

"You’ve got to give Saskatchewan credit, I thought they played a really good third period, they battled back from a deficit a couple of times, and we got some timely goals, obviously," said Stephen. "There’s a lot to work on as far as structure goes and just making sure our group is accountable to eachother, but, you know what, it’s a win, and it puts us in a better situation moving forward."

Captain Peyton Krebs led the way for Team Alberta, scoring two goals and setting up Holloway for the game-winner, earning Player of the Game honours for his efforts. Liam Keeler pitched in a goal and and assist for Alberta, while defender Jake Lee added two helpers.

Taylor Gauthier made 18 saves for Team Alberta, while his counterpart Logan Maier made 22 stops for Saskatchewan.

Logan Barlage was named the Player of the Game for Saskatchewan, who will face Team B.C. Thursday afternoon.

Up next for Team Alberta is Team Manitoba, who fell 7-3 to B.C. on Wednesday afternoon. Game time is 6:30 p.m. at Markin MacPhail Centre at Winsport.

For more stats, schedule and ticket information for the Western Canada U16 Challenge, click here.

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2016 Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup kicks off in Calgary

CALGARY – The title defense is on for Team Alberta U16 Male, as the 2016 Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup begins today in Calgary.

Team Manitoba and Team B.C. kick off the tournament this afternoon (Wednesday) at 3 pm, while Team Alberta’s quest for another championship begins tonight at 6:30 pm against Team Saskatchewan. Team Alberta also hits the ice again Thursday night against Team Manitoba, and wraps up round-robin play Friday night against B.C. All three Team Alberta games are set for 6:30 p.m. at the Markin MacPhail Centre at WinSport.

Team Alberta U16 Roster >

Wednesday night’s game also marks a very special occasion for Team Alberta – the official unveiling of jerseys that feature Hockey Alberta’s new logo. Team members first saw the new jerseys on Monday during a team photo, but this will be the first time players representing the province of Alberta have donned the new logo in competition.

The winner of round-robin play advances straight to Sunday’s Championship game, while the 2nd and 3rd place teams will battle in the semi-final on Saturday afternoon.

The Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup will feature the highest-rated players in the under-16 age category from the provinces of British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. The four-team round robin tournament is the first step in Hockey Canada’s Program of Excellence for players.

The majority of players participating in the event were selected in the 2016 WHL Bantam Draft or have since been listed by WHL Clubs. The Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup is made possible through financial support provided by the WHL and Hockey Canada.

For more schedule and ticket information for the Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup, click here.

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Photo by LA Media - lamediadesign.photoshelter.com


Lethbridge to host 2017 Peewee Prospects Cup

RED DEER – Hockey Alberta is proud to announce the City of Lethbridge as the host site for the 2017 Peewee Prospects Cup.

The University of Lethbridge Pronghorns hockey program will assist Hockey Alberta with the execution of the Peewee Prospects Cup. The City of Lethbridge is no stranger to Hockey Alberta events, having previously hosted the Albert Cup in 2011 and 2012.

“We’re very excited to bring the Peewee Prospects Cup to Lethbridge,” said Dustin Moore, Coordinator, Team Alberta. “We’re looking forward to working with the Pronghorns to deliver a memorable experience for everyone involved.”

The Peewee Prospects Cup is a core development program for male players, and the first step in the Team Alberta Male program. The event provides players, coaches, therapists, equipment managers, administrators and referees an opportunity to discover the great qualities of competitive hockey.


About the Peewee Prospects Cup

The Peewee Prospects Cup runs every second year, alternating with the Alberta Winter Games. The inaugural Peewee Prospects Cup was held in 2015 in Olds.

The 2017 Peewee Prospects Cup features 2004-born male players, and begins with four regional camps in April, designed to allow athletes, coaches and trainers to show their skills and receive top-level instruction and evaluation. The top 40 athletes from each regional camp (two teams from each camp), six coaches, two coach mentors and two directors of operations will be selected to participate in the Hockey Alberta Peewee Prospects Cup competition.

If you have any questions about the Peewee Prospects Cup, please contact Dustin Moore.

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Photo courtesy of LA Media/The WHL


Nine Albertans selected for World U-17 Hockey Challenge

RED DEER – Nine members of the Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup-winning Team Alberta squad are set to suit up for Team Canada this fall.

Goaltender Carl Stankowski, defencemen Sean Comrie, Ty Smith and Jonathan Tychonick, and forwards Elijah Brown, Eric Florchuk, Tristen Nielsen, Josh Tarzwell and Chase Wouters are among the 66 players named to represent Canada at the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge.

Smith and Nielsen are also among the players selected who already have international experience, winning a silver medal with Team Canada at the 2016 Winter Youth Olympic Games.

The process, which began with 111 players who took part in a seven-day development camp in late July, will be finalized next week when the 66-player roster is divided to make up the three Canadian teams – Team Canada Black, Team Canada Red, and Team Canada White - who will face the Czech Republic, Finland, Russia, Sweden, and the United States in their quest for gold.

Hockey Canada’s Program of Excellence officially begins with the under-17 development camp in July, and runs through the men’s high-performance camps and teams up to, and including, Canada’s National Junior Team.

The 2016 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge runs Oct 27 – Nov 5 in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario.