SURREY, B.C. – Hockey Canada, in partnership with Hockey Québec and BC Hockey, announced Sunday that Saguenay, Que. will host the 2011 National Women’s Under-18 Championship, while Dawson Creek, B.C. will host the 2012 National Women’s Under-18 Championship.
The 2011 championship will take place from November 2-6, 2011 at the Centre Georges-Vézina in Saguenay, while the 2012 championship will be held from November 7-11, 2012 at the EnCana Events Centre in Dawson Creek.
With the Canada Winter Games scheduled for February 11-27, 2011 in Halifax, N.S., there will be no National Women’s Under-18 Championship in 2010.
The National Women’s Under-18 Championship brings together teams made up of the best young female hockey players from across the country. The tournament serves as an important platform for Hockey Canada scouts, who use it to help evaluate candidates for the National Women’s Under-18 Team, which plays in international events including the IIHF World Women’s Under-18 Championship.
“The City of Saguenay and the Chicoutimi Minor Hockey Association are proud and excited about organizing the next National Women’s Under-18 Championship,” says Saguenay mayor Jean Tremblay. “In November 2011, we want hockey fans in Saguenay to see the best young female players in the country.”
“The City of Dawson Creek is extremely pleased to have been awarded the 2012 National Women’s Under-18 Championship,” says Dawson Creek mayor Mike Bernier. “We look forward to hosting this prestigious event and having the competing teams experience northern B.C. hospitality and support.”
The 20 championships will mark the ninth and tenth times the event has been held since its inception in 1993. It now takes place every November, except during hockey seasons when the Canada Winter Games is held.
Seven provincial teams and one regional team compete for the National Women’s Under-18 Championship, including 20 host teams Quebec and British Columbia, respectively.
"We are thrilled to have the National Women's Under-18 Championship returning to British Columbia," says BC Hockey president Rick Boekestyn. "Dawson Creek is an excellent location for the event and we look forward to working with Hockey Canada and the local host committee.”
“We’re very excited to award the National Women’s Under-18 Championship to Saguenay and Dawson Creek,” says Scott Smith, Hockey Canada’s chief operating officer. “Hockey fans in both cities will have the chance to see the future stars of the women’s game take to the ice in 20.”
The National Women’s Under-18 Championship boasts several high-profile alumni, from household names such as Hayley Wickenheiser and Gillian Apps to rising stars such as Marie-Philip Poulin and Brianne Jenner, who are all on the centralized roster for the National Women’s Team and currently training for the 2010 Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver, B.C.
The 2009 championship is taking place this week in Surrey, B.C., with the gold medal game between Ontario Blue and Ontario Red at South Surrey Arena set to air on Hockey Canada’s official broadcaster at 3:30 p.m. TSN2 today.