SUMMERSIDE, PEI - Ten provinces are competing this week at the 20th annual Esso Women's National Hockey Championship beginning today running through Sunday, March 11th in Summerside, Prince Edward Island.
The annual Esso Women's Nationals is jointly presented by the Canadian Hockey Association, the premier sponsors of the CHA: Esso, Air Canada, Bauer NIKE Hockey, Royal Bank, and the Prince Edward Island Hockey Association.
Pool A brings together the defending champion Ontario (Beatrice Aeros) along with Team Saskatchewan, Team New Brunswick, Team Newfoundland and Team Manitoba (Manitoba Storm). Pool B brings together Équipe Québec, Team Alberta (Oval X-Treme), Team Nova Scotia, Team British Columbia (Vancouver Griffins) and Team Prince Edward Island.
The 2001 Esso Women's Nationals will feature 12 members of Canada's National Women's Team which will be taking part in the 2001 IIHF World Women's Hockey Championship April 2-8 in Minneapolis, USA. Seven players from Team Canada's Silver medal winning entry at the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics will also be taking part. The Championship will also showcase 12 members of Canada's Under 22 National Team from the Three Nations Tournament in November 2001.
"Since their inception in 1982, the Esso Women's Nationals have played a major role in the promotion and development of female hockey throughout Canada and the world," said Bob Nicholson, President of the Canadian Hockey Association. "These players have brought credibility to hockey and serve as positive role models to youngsters who play for fun and excellence."
The 2001 Esso Women's Nationals champion will be determined after five days and 29 games of competition played at the Cahill Stadium and the Steele Arena. The Championship game will be played at 8 pm (local time) on March 11th and televised live on The Sports Network and their French counterpart, Le Reseau des Sports.
NOTE: Due to transportation problems arising from the storm in Eastern Canada, the game schedule has been revised. Visit the EWN site for updated information.