CALGARY, Alta. – Canada’s National Sledge Team is in Amherst, N.Y., a suburb of Buffalo, for a three-game series against the United States from February 23-25 at The Northtown Center at Amherst. The series will be Canada’s final games before the IPC Sledge Hockey World Championship, scheduled for March 25-April 2 in Hamar, Norway.
For the series against the Americans, Canada has added assistant coach Jeff Lewis to its staff, along with defenceman Brendan Blanchard (Chatham, Ont.). Blanchard most recently played for Canada’s National Sledge Development Team in a three-game series against the U.S. earlier this month, recording a goal and an assist as the Canadians won two of the three games.
Canada’s National Sledge Team goes into the series against the U.S. riding a 15-game winning streak, the longest since sledge hockey came under the Hockey Canada umbrella prior to the 2004-05 season. The Canadians have also won six in a row against the Americans, dating back to October 2010.
Canada has posted a perfect 10-0 record during the 2011-12 season, including gold medals at the 2011 World Sledge Hockey Challenge in Calgary, Alta., in December and the 2012 Japan Four Nations Tournament in Nagano, Japan, in January.
“This is a crucial series for us as we get ready for the upcoming world championship,” said Mike Mondin, head coach of Canada’s National Sledge Team. “It gives us an opportunity to prepare ourselves against the defending world champions and hopefully take some momentum with us to Norway next month.”
NOTE TO MEDIA - Adam Crockatt, Hockey Canada’s manager of hockey operations/national teams, is on-site with the team and can assist with any media interview requests. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.