CALGARY, Alta. – Hockey Canada announced Tuesday that Canada’s National Sledge Development Team will face the United States’ development team in a three-game series, January 13-15, at the Essex Arena and Sports Complex in Essex, Ont.
Canada swept a three-game series from the U.S. last month in Buffalo, N.Y., outscoring the Americans 10-1.
Canada’s National Sledge Development Team was created to help elite-level sledge hockey players not chosen for Canada’s National Sledge Team get an opportunity to get international experience with hopes of developing their skills for future national team duty.
Two players, Jonathan Plante (St-Joseph-du-Lac, Que.) and Dany Verner (Bois-de-Filion, Que.) have been added to Canada’s roster for the three-game series.
In addition, head coach Todd Sargeant (London, Ont.) will be joined on the bench by two former members of Canada’s National Sledge Team; Hervé Lord (St-Pamphile, Que.) and Todd Nicholson (Kinburn, Ont.) will serve as assistant coaches. Lord and Nicholson are two of Canada’s most decorated sledge hockey players – both played in five Paralympics and five IPC Sledge Hockey World Championships, and have close to 40 years combined experience with the national team.
“We are excited that Hervé and Todd are staying involved in the sledge hockey program and will be behind the bench with Todd in Essex,” said Brad Pascall, Hockey Canada’s vice-president of hockey operations/national teams. “They have years of experience that they will be able to share with our players to help in their development and growth.”
On January 12, prior to the start of the series, Canada’s National Sledge Development Team will hold a pair of practices at the Essex Arena and Sports Complex, at 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. Both practices are open to the public.
In lieu of tickets for the three games, small donations for local sledge hockey programs will be accepted at the door.