With the final team qualified for the 2010 Esso Cup, the puck is set to drop on the National Female Midget Championship in Regina.
The Thunder Bay Queens became the sixth and final team to book their spot, using a smothering defence to win the Ontario championship last weekend. The Queens went 6-0 at the provincials, allowing a remarkable one goal in six games. Thunder Bay will look to follow in the footsteps of the Scarborough Sharks, who made it all the way to the gold medal game at the inaugural Esso Cup in Calgary last year.
Joining the Queens in Regina will be the Remparts du Richelieu (Quebec), who defeated the Cyclones du Bas St-Laurent 4-1 in the provincial championship match-up April 4 to become the first Quebec team to vie for the national championship.
The Edmonton Thunder (Pacific) are back in the Esso Cup for a second-consecutive year after sweeping the Thompson-Okanagan Rockets in the Pacific Regional, the second time in as many years the Thunder did not allow the B.C. champions a goal in the regional series.
The Notre Dame Hounds (West) also swept its two-game series against the Pembina Valley Hawks from Manitoba, but just barely, as both games were decided by a single goal. The Hounds edged the Hawks 4-3 in the first game April 2 and 3-2 in the second April 3.
The Moncton Rockets (Atlantic) beat out Metro Boston Pizza of Halifax by a score of 4-1 late last month to make their way to the 2010 Esso Cup.
The Esso Cup kicks off Sunday, April 18 and runs through Saturday, April 24 in Regina, Sask., where the host Regina Rebels will welcome the five regional champions to the Co-operators Centre at Evraz Place.