WSI returns to Europe after two-year hiatus; Six countries clash in Prague

Some of the top 2010-born European hockey players in the world gathered in Czechia last week for the 10U World Selects Invitational, and they put on quite a show.

The hometown Czech Knights ended up prevailing in the European showcase that featured teams from Czechia, Slovakia, Latvia, Sweden, Finland and the Alps. 

In the final, the Knights topped the Slovakia Kings 4-1 to capture the title inside the Letnany Ice Arena in Prague.

The win capped off a perfect week for the Czech club, as they posted a 5-0 record in the preliminary round before rolling through the playoffs, as well.

To start, they beat the Latvia Selects 5-0 Tuesday morning, before beating the Alps Selects 7-1 later in the day. On Wednesday, they took down the Slovakia Kings 4-1 and the Sweden Selects 2-1, before wrapping up the prelims with a 7-1 win over the Finland Selects on Thursday.

That earned the Knights a bye to the semifinals, where they took on the winner of the Sweden Selects vs. Alps Selects quarters. Sweden beat the Alps club 14-1, but their scoring streak ran out when they took on the Czechs, as the Knights picked up a 4-0 shutout victory. 

The Czechs wrapped things up Friday evening with the aforementioned 4-1 win over Slovakia in the final. The Knights scored four goals in the first period to take control of the contest and coast to victory in their rematch with the Slovakian club. The Slovakia Kings were undefeated in all of the other contests they played in, finishing with a 5-2 record on the week.

Czechia’s representatives thrived on their home ice, as they out-scored the competition 33-5 in their seven games. Nobody managed to score more than a single goal on them during the duration of the tournament.

Czechia’s Matyas Vik led the tournament and the Knights in scoring during the five-game preliminary round, as he racked up nine points over the five contests. Vik found the scoresheet in every game but the final, showing a consistent presence for his club each and every contest. His nine-point mark was matched by Slovakia’s Simon Sisik, who had four goals and five assists for the runners-up.

Oliver Hammerman of the Sweden Selects finished with eight points, one point off the tournament lead. Even more impressive than his eight points in five games was his eight points in two games in the playoffs, as Hammerman did everything he could to help his Swedes in the elimination rounds.

Two of the Knights — Niko Fatyka and Marek Sedlacek — both had eight points in the prelims, while Tomas Albrecht had six, and Adam Novotny had five.

In the playoffs, David Jahn and Niko Fatyka both had three points apiece, while a total of nine different Knights found their way to the scoresheet over the two games.

Tobias Orechvsky and Tomas Zmitko split time between the pipes for the Czechs; in the preliminary round, Orechovsky posted a .966 save percentage with only one goal against, while Zmitko finished with a .903 save percentage and only three goals against. 

In the playoffs, Orechovsky saw 60 minutes of action between the pipes, stopping all 11 shots sent his way for a perfect 1.00 save percentage and 0.00 goals-against average. Zmitko only needed to make five saves on the six shots sent his way during his 20 minutes of postseason action; he finishes with a .833 save percentage and 2.00 goals-against average. 

Slovakia’s David Brucek deserves some high praise as well – the Kings’ goaltender played every minute of the preliminary round and stood on his head while doing so. Brucek finished with a 1.40 goals-against average and .933 save percentage while allowing only seven goals in the five games. He faced 105 shots on goal in the timeframe.

Want more coverage of the World Selects Invitationals this spring? There’s seven events over the next two weeks, and WHH will have exclusive coverage of the top teams, players and champions. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok and YouTube for the last news!

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States compete for bragging rights in unique spring hockey tournament

The second annual New England States Rivalry Challenge hosted roughly 185 athletes from four different states. Teams at the 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010 birth years battled it out for state supremacy in this uniquely designed spring tournament that continues to grow in popularity. The tournament structure was a standard round robin, with the champions being whoever finished with the most points in the standings. With that, we’ve got winners and standouts from all four age groups, and who reigned supreme at this weekend’s NESRC.

2007 Division

Team Massachusetts dominated, as the age group graduated to the 16U division for the first time in the 2022-23 USA Hockey calendar. Michael Munroe led the team in scoring with 10 points in four games, while him and teammate Jake Tavares tied each other with seven goals apiece. Colvin Callahan also put up six goals of his own for Massachusetts, a team that scored 30 goals this weekend. 

While Team Massachusetts took the top spot with six points in the standings, Team New Hampshire did manage to hand Mass its only loss of the weekend with an 11-4 drubbing on Saturday night. Max Condon scored four of his six goals – and five of his seven points – for NH in their win over Massachusetts. His teammate, Carter Amico scored twice as many points as any other defensemen in the age group with six points. 

2008 Division

The Bay State sat at the top of the ’08 Division as well, but this team Massachusetts posted a perfect 3-0 record. This was the only age group with four teams in the field, and the Massachusetts offense was only outdone by its own defense. Ten different scorers accounted for 33 goals, while Stryker Connors and Devan Maloney allowed just five goals against. 

Cam MacPherson led all scorers with nine goals and 12 points, with teammate Aidan Fitzpatrick close behind with 10 points. Garrit Turcotte recorded a point in every game for Team New Hampshire, including a three-point game against New York and a four-point game against Vermont. 

2009 Division

Team Vermont and Team Massachusetts clashed in a best-of-three series in the ’09 Division. Peyton Albertson, Escher Briere and Cooper Browe scored four unanswered goals in the third period Friday afternoon to take Game 1 for Vermont, 5-1. The next two games provided plenty of back and forth, with each state picking up a win by just one goal. Game 2 featured four lead changes. Devin Conikos, Lucas Kumin and William Gutkoski scored, each time putting Team Massachusetts in front by a goal. However, every time Mass moved themselves out in front, Vermont quickly tied it up, before Albertson, Briere and Browe yet again mounted a third-period offensive to win 5-4. 

The third and final game featured an astonishing 17 goals, as Massachusetts got in the win column with a 9-8 victory. Defenseman Max Ludwar‘s hat trick for Vermont was one-upped by Gutkoski, who had a hat trick of his own. Duncan Vittrands and Devin Cokinos both had a pair of goals for Massachusetts as well to fuel the team to victory. 

2010 Division

In its home state, Team New Hampshire swept the best-of-three series with Team Vermont in the ’10 Division. Forwards Colton Bamberg, Brayden Gearin and C.J. Sawyer topped the charts in scoring with a combined 13 goals and 26 points. They propelled an offense that was plus-12 in scoring and wore down their opponent.

The score was probably not the biggest indicator of competition at this particular age group. Despite getting swept, Vermont opened the scoring in all three games, and held the lead on five separate occasions throughout those contests. Kuba Pavlik led his home state in scoring with four goals, and Zachary Mandigo followed close behind with three of his own. 

Still in the young stages of its history, the New England States Rivalry Challenge is a unique spring hockey tournament experience. Players can register individually to represent their respective home states or, gather a team of friends and compete as a group. The 2022 event featured teams from Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York and Vermont, but applicants from all 50 states are welcome, so long as there are enough participants to field a 15-player AAA-level roster. Want more info on next year’s NESRC and how you can represent your home state at the event? Fill out the form below!

New England States Rivalry Challenge
Find Out More!

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Black Bear Sports Group And USPHL Join To Form Mega Youth Hockey League

Some prominent entities in the United States’ east coast hockey community are joining forces.

It was announced this week that Black Bear Sports Group, the United States Premier Hockey League and the Tier-1 Hockey Federation are entering into a new collaboration for their youth hockey programs.

Teams of all ages from across Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania will now play in the THF-USPHL South Division (shortened to “THF South”). Meanwhile, 18U, 16U and 15O teams in Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts will play in the USPHL-THF North Division (“USPHL North”), which will be administered by the THF. The youth teams of the USPHL North Member clubs will remain in their current leagues.

The two divisions discussed above will compete at season’s end for a USPHL Championship.

“Through our collaboration with the USPHL, the THF is now a one-of-a-kind organization in that we are the only group with clubs that operate from ‘cradle to college,’ from Mite through Midget at the youth level and every level of junior hockey developing players for NCAA Division-I, II and III schools,” said Murry N. Gunty, Founder and CEO of Black Bear Sports Group. “We are honored to collaborate with the USPHL and their member clubs, and look forward to building upon all of their successes to date.”

Tony Zasowski, previously the director of the North American Prospects Hockey League (NAPHL), has been named commissioner of the THF. Zasowski brings a wealth of experience to the new role, having led one of the largest youth hockey leagues in the U.S., in addition to his work with the NAHL Central Scouting, prospects tournaments and combines initiatives.

“I am excited to work with all of our member clubs in the THF and USPHL to build one of the top Tier-1 organizations in the country,” said Tony Zasowski, Commissioner of the THF. “We have an amazing group of operators that will support the growth and placement of all our hockey players to the highest levels.”

The Mercer Chiefs will also be purchasing a Tier-2 NCDC junior hockey franchise, and field a team in the 2022-23 season.

“The Mercer Chiefs have a long history of success at the youth level so we are thrilled to have them join us in the NCDC,” said Bob Turow, Commissioner of the USPHL. “We believe this association at the Midget and youth levels will strengthen both of our organizations.”

For more information regarding the latest youth hockey news from around the world, follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok and YouTube!

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The final push for Russian Hockey Federation District Championships

March is the final month of competition in all eight districts of the Russian Hockey Federation (FHR). Each district recognizes champions at each of the age groups between 2005 and 2011 birth years. District play spans throughout the entire season with a round-robin format in which teams played one another. The team with the most points in the standings after all games are completed would earn the title as champion of their respective district.

District champions of three oldest age groups – 2005, 2006 and 2007 – earn an automatic bid to the 2022 Championships of Russia, slated to begin in late April. This is a similar format to that of USA Hockey and its 12 districts. 

The FHR is broken up into nine districts across the country:

With district championships nearing their conclusions, first-place finishers will advance to their respective national tournaments. 

The 2006 age group will be the first to take the ice, when teams come together in St. Petersburg from April 28 to May 8. After that, the 2007s will compete in Sochi at the site of the 2014 Winter Olympics from May 14 – 24. The oldest group, the 2005s, will overlap a bit with the U15s as their tournament will run from May 16 – 26 in Chelyabinsk.

All three tournaments will follow a similar format to that of district championships. Teams will play a round-robin format schedule. The team with the most points in the standings at the end of the tournament will once again be crowned as national champion.

World Hockey Hub will have continued coverage of all three Russian national championships, featuring top players, highlights, recaps and more. Be sure to follow WHH on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok and YouTube for the latest regarding Russia youth hockey.

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All 11 World Selects Tournament Dates, Locations And More This Spring

Known globally as the premier international event in youth hockey, the World Selects Invitational (WSI) tournament series is slated to begin April 12th, and returns with high expectations for all 11 events scheduled for the 2022 spring season. From 18U girls to 2010-born boys, the mountains of Chamonix to the honky tonks of Nashville, the lineup of events is second to none for this world-class spectacle. For five consecutive weeks, elite youth hockey athletes of various age groups and genders will compete in exotic cities in the ultimate clash of culture and competition.

14U Girls Elite in Chamonix, France
April 12 – 16, 2022

Some of the best amateur girls hockey players on the planet will be in the resort area where France, Switzerland and Italy all come together in the heart of Europe. Near the base of Mont Blanc — the highest summit in the Alps — the only thing more unique than the scenic landscape is the backdrop at the Courmayeur Ice Rink. This event is typically the first opportunity for girls athletes to experience the WSI; a starting point for future events and locations in the years that follow.

15U Girls Elite in Chamonix, France
April 19 – 23, 2022

Less than 48 hours after the 14U girls vacate the rink, hotels, local shops and restaurants, the 15U girls pick up right where their younger counterparts leave off. More exciting action, more sight-seeing and another world champion crowned after the older girls take their turn on the ice. Current NCAA standout and Canadian native, Katie Chan holds the all-time tournament scoring record with 23; a mark that hasn’t been touched since 2015. 

12U Boys Elite in Bolzano, Italy
April 26 – 30, 2022

A team from Canada or Russia has accounted for each of the last five 12U Elite championships. The best boys from the 2010-birth year and below will take to the ice in the South Tyrol city of Bolzano. PalaOnda Ice Arena has hosted several WSIs in previous years, and will do so once again with teams from around the world expected to be in attendance. In 2016, Matthew Savoie (28), Ivan Miroshnichenko (27) and Shane Wright (22) finished one, two and three in scoring in what proved to be one of the highest-scoring events in the tournaments’ history. Six years later, that trio of names is slated to be high first-round picks in this summer’s NHL Draft. 

14U Boys Elite in Bolzano, Italy
May 3 – 7, 2022

The boys go back-to-back in Bolzano, with the 14U Elites stepping in the very next week. The 2008s were supposed to make their WSI debut in the spring of 2020, before COVID-19 shut down — or restricted — international travel for the next 18 months. So two years later, the world will get its first look at top-level 14U talent. The past five teams to win the 14U tournament have come from five different countries: East Coast Selects (USA), DraftDay (CAN), RUSS Moscow (RUS), Finland Selects (FIN) and Czech Selects (CZE). The 2022 event is anyone’s to win.

2009 Boys AAA in Chamonix, France
May 4 – 7, 2022

The AAA series of WSI tournaments is unique, in that it works similar to that of relegation and promotion in soccer leagues. If a team wins the AAA tournament, they could find themselves competing in the elite event the following season. It’s a way for any AAA-level player to enjoy the same experience as the elite events, while potentially earning a spot in the following season’s premier field of teams. One of four WSI events — joining 14U and 15U girls, and 13U boys elite — slated to be in Chamonix, it is the most WSI tournaments hosted in one location in a single season.

2010 Boys AAA in Prague, Czech Republic
May 4 – 7, 2022

The first event of the spring in the city of Prague, this field of teams will have a heavy European contingent. In fact, it will be the most diverse group out of all WSI events with representatives from Alps, Austria, Czech, Denmark, Finland, Norway, Poland, Russia, Slovakia, Sweden and Ukraine. The week will be filled with the beautiful sights of medieval castles and gothic cathedrals, as well as an competitive champion looking to climb the WSI ladder to greater heights in the years to come.

15U Boys Elite in Nashville, Tennessee, USA
May 10 – 15, 2022

DraftDay is the reigning, defending, two-time champion of the 15U Elite tournament. The event moved to the Music City for the first time last summer, and will return again this May. The best 2007-born athletes on the planet will be on-hand to compete for the world championship in one of the most highly-scouted events of the summer. Mitch Marner, Mikko Rantanen, Adam Fox, Andrei Svechnikov, Miro Heiskanen, Moritz Seider, Trevor Zegras… More than 400 current, former, and soon-to-be NHL players first competed in this very tournament. Get your first look at the next wave of elite hockey talent right here.

13U Boys Elite in Chamonix, France
May 10 – 14, 2022

Running parallel to the ‘07s, the best ‘09s will be competing at the same time, just on the other end of the globe. With great coordination, the team at World Hockey Group is able to plan and execute multiple events in multiple countries, seamlessly. European teams have won three of the last four 13U world championships, and will once again feature a heavy contingent of nearby teams. Belarus, Czech, Finland, Latvia, Russia, Slovakia and Sweden are expected to be represented, among others. A 13-year-old Connor Bedard once led this tournament in scoring with 32 points in seven games and didn’t win the championship

2008 Boys AAA in Prague, Czech Republic
May 11 – 14, 2022

The last boys event in Europe for 2022, it will run concurrently to the 13U Elite event which will be happening less than 1,000 kilometers away from each other. The Letňany Ice Rink has been home to several WSI champions in years past, and 12 teams will have a shot at being the next to do so in 2022. “The City of A Hundred Spires” has breath-taking sight lines of old architecture and beautiful bridges that span across the Vltava River. The boys’ European finale should feature plenty of fireworks with teams from as many as 11 different countries.

16U Boys Elite in Boston, Massachusetts, USA
May 26 – 30, 2022

The United States Hockey League (USHL) Draft and Ontario Hockey League (OHL) Priority Selection are slated to take place just days before this event. Many of the 2006-born participants in this tournament will be fresh off having their names called in one or both leagues, and should be one of the biggest events of the summer for the age group. Hosted in the heart of college hockey country, it’s an easy destination for nearby scouts to get to, with more than a dozen Division-I universities within an hour drive of the venue.

18U Girls Elite in Prague, Czech Republic
July 27 – 30, 2022

The finale of the World Selects tournament series, the oldest age group of girls has closed things out as the final event of the season for the last several years. Hosted in one of the most historic and colorful cities in Europe, Prague is filled with old architecture, beautiful scenery and excellent hockey at the nearby ice arena. Typically one of the smaller fields of teams, the 18U group only consists of eight-to-ten teams, providing for a very intimate and exclusive experience for participating players.

World Hockey Hub will have exclusive coverage of all the action, highlights, recaps, top performers and more from all 11 World Selects events. Be sure to follow WHH on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok and YouTube for the latest regarding WSI, and learn more to get involved in future events.

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Helpful Approaches To Mental Success On And Off The Ice

To some extent we all understand that confidence is a helpful approach to success. Confident folks show up ready to take on the day’s challenges. Confident athletes show up ready to compete. They fully believe in their abilities. They know that they will give their opponent a run for their money.

Myth: Confidence Is For The Few

Some believe that confidence is reserved for only a small group of people. They believe that confidence is something a person is born with, like a personality trait. There are traits like charisma and being outgoing that are at times thought of as confidence. But those traits do not equal confidence. 

We have seen stories and known of people who have a quiet confidence who would not fit the description of a highly social person. Essentially, confidence is not limited to extroverts or those who can walk into a room and command attention, but for introverts and those who fly under the radar of mass attention.

Confidence is not a trait. A person is not born confident. Confidence is a mindset.

Myth: You Have To Be Winning To Be Confident

Others believe that in order to be confident you have to have won; that you have to have a winning record to be confident or that you have to have some sort of proof to be confident. Confidence is not just given to a person. 

Just because you have won does not mean you are automatically confident.

Winning helps. Knowing that you have the skill to win in competition, beat out opponents, and you have what it takes to reach your goals does build confidence. But winning is not necessary to be confident. You can be an underdog and be confident. You can be a backup goalie or be on the fourth line and still be confident. Confidence is a mindset.

Confidence Is A Choice

When I first learned that confidence could be a choice, I didn’t believe it. If confidence was a choice then I would be confident, why wouldn’t I choose to be confident all the time. Why aren’t all people automatically confident if we can just choose it? I didn’t buy into the idea that a person could actively choose to be confident.

However, if you break it down you can begin to see how a person, athlete, or coach can choose confidence. Confidence is the unshakable belief in your ability. The belief in yourself is a thought process. Our minds can choose what thoughts to repeat, what thoughts to listen to, and what thoughts to interrupt. The constant self-talk statement of doubt or unworthiness certainly is not going to help a person be confident when the pressure is up. In fact, not only will it lead to a decrease in personal confidence but it also leads to poor performance. The athlete who is constantly questioning their ability will completely shut down after a mistake.

But a confident athlete can choose their thoughts to say, “I’m ready,” “I’ve trained for this,” and “No one will outwork me.” An athlete who tells themselves confident statements is going to be better prepared for competition and bounce back more quickly if they make a mistake. The more confident thoughts an athlete has, the stronger his or her belief becomes in their ability to perform. As this belief is continuously reinforced by confident thinking, the athlete builds and maintains a sense of confidence.

Start Choosing Confidence

Make a list of at least 10 positive confidence-building statements. The idea of 10 may seem like it’s not too many, but it can be tough to think of statements that actually mean something to you.

If you get 10 easily, push for 15–20. Once you have the list, read and reread it again. Build the reading this list into your routines. The more you go over the list the more the statements will ring true to you. Your pattern of thoughts will develop your mindset. Thinking specific confidence boosting thoughts will strengthen specific neural-pathways in your brain. The statements will become an automatic response when you’re faced with difficult or challenging times. You will maintain a sense of belief and confidence by choosing a confident mindset. This mindset determines your behavior and subsequently your performance.

By Blaise Fayolle, EdD, CMPC, LLPC 

Blaise Fayolle holds a doctorate in Sport and Performance Psychology and is credentialed as a Certified Mental Performance Consultant® through the Associated for Applied Sport Psychology. Blaise is also a licensed mental health professional in Michigan. 

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First Ever AAA Spring Invite Set For Detroit

World Hockey Events is headed to Hockeytown, USA for the first ever AAA Spring Invite. Eighty Elite and AAA programs from all across North America are headed to the Motor City on April 22nd for a tournament that’s guaranteed to be an instant classic. Bragging rights are on the line for Michigan programs as they look to defend their home turf against teams from New Jersey, Tennessee, Nebraska, New York, and New Hampshire. Nobody does hockey better than the city of Detroit, and this tournament better be on your spring team’s to-do list.

“The World Hockey Events team is chomping at the bit to kick this thing off,” said Jason Deskins, National Director of Recruitment at Total Package Hockey. “This is the first tournament we’ve developed under the newly formed World Hockey Events umbrella, and we can already tell that we’ve got a recipe for success. Our team has over 20 years of tournament experience, so it only made sense to host our first event in America’s favorite hockey city. We can’t wait for you and your team to experience the inaugural AAA Spring Invite.”

All of the action is going down at two of the metro area’s premier hockey venues; Troy Sports Center and Viking Ice Arena. Combined, the two facilities feature six full-sized rinks, which is more than enough ice for the 200-plus games taking place over the tournament’s three-day span. Not to mention, each venue is conveniently located near plenty of places to grab a bite, pick up a new stick, or take your mind off the game for a bit.

Already looking for things to do in the area? You came to the right spot! Detroit has no shortage of off-ice activities, whether you’re looking for team bonding experiences or some plain, old R&R. The AAA Spring Invite takes place just a quick ride away from the Arena District, which is home to four professional sports teams. Plus, you can’t forget about all of the spots to grab a team dinner on Detroit’s renowned Monroe Street. All parents and coaches are highly encouraged to round out the weekend by sharing a pint at the home of All Day IPA, Founders Brewing Company.

A tournament built by the best in the game, for the best in the game. What more could you ask for? Click HERE to register for the AAA Spring Invite!

Want more from World Hockey Events? Check out our complete lineup of tournaments HERE.

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Indoor Activities, Gatherings Halted in Provinces, Forcing GTHL And Others To Pause Season

With the province of Ontario entering a lockdown reminiscent of the initial COVID-19 wave in 2020, Canada’s largest hockey league has hit pause once again.

The Greater Toronto Hockey League (GTHL) officially announced a halt in operations Monday, following the announcement from the Ontario government that youth hockey — like most everything else — would be put on the shelves until further notice.

The Omicron variant of COVID-19 is sweeping through North America and causing another round of disruptions for normal activities in the youth hockey community.

Per the Government of Ontario’s new temporary restrictions, the province moves to a ‘Stage Two of the Roadmap to Reopen’ plan. That means indoor sports are paused for a period of at least 21 days beginning on Jan. 5 at 12:01 a.m. Indoor sports facilities are closed until at least Jan. 26.

Similar lockdown measures are being enforced in British Columbia and Quebec, the latter of which has a strict 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. complete curfew.

An ominous photo of hockey nets padlocked together on an outdoor rink in Quebec has been making the rounds on social media as a statement about the severity of the lockdown.


The GTHL Top Prospects Game, originally scheduled to take place on Jan. 13, has been postponed, and a new date will be announced when the lockdown measures are lifted.

The Toronto Marlboros Holiday Classic, an annual tournament that brings top talent from both Canada and the U.S. together, was a recent casualty, as well.

No official word yet on the status of the Quebec International Pee Wee Hockey Tournament; the iconic event was slated to proceed as usual after some heavy lifting by tournament organizers to secure fully vaccinated teams from six different countries.

“As we continue with our provincial vaccine booster efforts, we must look at every option to slow the spread of the highly contagious Omicron variant,” Ontario premier Doug Ford said in the official release from the province announcing the new policies. “Putting these targeted and time-limited measures in place will give us more opportunity to deliver vaccines to all Ontarians and ensure everyone has maximum protection against this virus.”

Canadian youth hockey players lost the entire 2020-21 hockey season, and the hope was that it would be the only time a youth hockey generation would have to experience something so drastic. With the IIHF World Junior Championship canceled, NHL games being postponed, it’s hard to know when Canadian hockey players will be able to get back onto the ice, but we hope it will be as soon as possible.

For more news from the world of youth hockey, follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok and YouTube.

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Total Package Hockey and World Hockey Group Team Up To Create World Hockey Events

A coordinated effort to raise the bar of youth hockey tournaments, camps and more

EXETER, NEW HAMPSHIRE — Two of the biggest entities in youth hockey events — Total Package Hockey (TPH) and World Hockey Group (WHG) — have teamed up in a joint venture to launch World Hockey Events (WHE). Between the two organizations, WHG and TPH account for more than 20 years of tournament operations experience, with a global network of elite coaches, knowledgeable scouts and evaluators, experienced tournament directors and state-of-the-art facilities. Through World Hockey Events, the two groups combine to raise the bar of expectations regarding tournaments and events worldwide.

Together, the organizations merge to provide more than 25 tournaments, camps and tours throughout North America and Europe. World Hockey Events includes tournaments for Tier-I and Tier-II level teams as well as individual programming for Elite and AAA-level athletes. Not just offering world-class events for the youth hockey community, but a first-class experience for the athlete, the team and the families.

“People can expect the absolute best,” said WHG chief executive officer Travis Bezio. “Players, coaches and parents attending a World Hockey Event will experience the very best in competition, hospitality and travel. A seamless process from start to finish that will leave everyone with memories that’ll last a lifetime.”

The current portfolio includes iconic events such as The World Selects Invitational in Nashville, Champions League Hockey and Grand Rapids AAA Kick-Off Classic. Other programming like international tours to European World Selects events and individual-entry tournaments like The Atlantic Scramble and New England States Rivalry Challenge

“At TPH, we’ve always prided ourselves on running great youth hockey events since our first tournament 15 years ago,” said TPH chief executive officer Alan Keeso. “By working together with Travis Bezio and his team at World Hockey Group, we feel it’s an opportunity for both groups to elevate all of our events to heights never seen before in youth hockey.”

As part of the merger, will serve as home for the entire World Hockey Events portfolio. Every tournament, tour, and event from the team at WHE will be available exclusively on the World Hockey Hub, with multimedia coverage, schedules, standings, tournament recaps and digital media provided by The Pulse of Youth Hockey

Through World Hockey Events, both TPH and WHG expand their respective footprints on the youth hockey landscape, improving on current programming and venturing into new endeavors like the expansion of Champions League, World Selects and the Centers of Excellence.

For more information regarding World Hockey Events and its complete list of events, click HERE.

About Total Package Hockey: Founded in 2001, it is Total Package Hockey’s (TPH) vision to become the world leader in positively impacting the lives of student-athletes through sport. TPH prides itself on operating at a standard that exceeds expectations of student-athletes, families, coaches, teachers, advisors and all other entities within both athletic and academic circles. With platforms that include association management, elite prospects programs, tournaments and showcases, camps and clinics and its hallmark Center of Excellence academy model, TPH services over 10,000 student-athletes on an annual basis, throughout 15 U.S. based divisions.

About World Hockey Group: The worldwide leader in youth hockey tournaments and events. World Hockey Group (WHG) provides more than two dozen unique events in exotic locations around the globe. The team at WHG is deeply involved in the youth hockey community, with an international presence in various countries including the United States, Canada, Sweden, Finland, Russia and central Europe. WHG prides itself on providing world-class competition along with a first-class travel experience. Events like the Champions League and World Selects tournament series offer amazing opportunities abroad both on and off the ice for the entire family to enjoy.

About World Hockey Hub: The Pulse of Youth Hockey. World Hockey Hub (WHH) is your number one resource for the latest news, team rankings, highlights, analysis and more from the world of youth hockey. WHH is the worldwide leader in providing global coverage of the game year-round. With an international rankings system, a comprehensive list of more than 500 tournaments, event ratings and reviews as well as the latest team and prospect news, WHH is your one-stop-shop for everything youth hockey related. | Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, YouTube

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Whitby Tournament Returns After One-Year Absence

The last time Silver Stick champions were crowned in Whitby, Ontario, an American team won the prestigious title at the U16 age group.

This time around, only one U.S.-based program was even in attendance for the premiere November event – but nobody was complaining.

It’s great to have events like the Gloria Rints Memorial International Silver Stick Tournament taking place once again, even if it means spectators didn’t get to see many border battles. 

After missing an entire year of Silver Stick because of COVID-19 last season, a field of Canadian teams (and one American) returned to Whitby to battle for the best trophy in youth hockey, and memories of the good kind were made for all the participants.

Here is a look at how the four AAA age groups – U16, U14, U12 and U10 – played out last weekend at the prestigious tournament:

U16 Canada/15O U.S. AAA (2006)

The Toronto Jr. Canadiens are ranked No. 1 in Canada on the World Hockey Hub’s rankings, and after this past weekend’s performance, they will be staying at the top. They opened tournament play with a 1-0 nail-biter against the Waterloo Wolves on Nov. 25; the Jr. Canadiens’ offense exploded the next day, as they beat the Lambton Jr. Sting 7-2 and the York Simcoe Express 7-1. Saturday started with a 3-3 tie against the Niagara North Stars, before the Jr. Canadiens started elimination-round play with a 4-3 win over the Vaughan Kings in the quarterfinals.

On Sunday, they posted a convincing 4-0 win over the Ajax Pickering Raiders to secure a spot in the title game. There, it was a battle of No. 1 vs. No. 2, as the Jr. Canadiens faced off against the Mississauga Senators. The Sens brought with them four of the five leading scorers in the tournament – William Moore (13 points), Caden Kelly (12), Michael Misa (12), and Malcom Spence (11) – but it didn’t matter, as the Jr. Canadiens skated to a 4-2 win and major bragging rights moving forward. 

Jack Van Volsen and Porter Martone led the Jr. Canadiens in scoring with 10 points apiece, while Antonio Tersigni had nine and Anthony Cristoforo and Micheal Hage both had eight. Paolo Frasca is listed as the starting netminder for all seven of the Jr. Canadiens’ games at Silver Stick, which means he registered a 6-0-1 record with a 1.64 goals-against average and two shutouts.

This age group offered a rare glimpse into how one of the top American teams stacks up against their Canadian counterparts this season, as the Bishop Kearney Selects sent a mix of their ’06 and ’07 players to Whitby – the only American participants in this Silver Stick tournament. The BK Selects beat the host Whitby Wildcats 4-1 on Thursday to start the tournament before tying the Thunder Bay Kings and losing to the Mississauga Senators 5-2 on Friday. They also beat the Huron Perth Lakers 6-3 on Saturday. 

U14 Canada/13U U.S. AAA (2008)

Much like the older age group, the No. 1-ranked team in the country took care of business in Whitby. The Vaughan Kings emerged victorious, and their final day at the tournament was a gauntlet of other ranked teams.

The Kings started with a 6-1 win over the Huron Perth Lakers on Thursday before a pair of ties on Friday — 4-4 against the Soo Greyhounds and 1-1 against the Ottawa 67’s. To wrap up the preliminary round, the Kings posted a 7-0 win over the Kingston Jr. Gaels in their lone game on Saturday. 

The quarterfinals, semifinals and final were all played Sunday, and they featured an impressive collection of top teams at the ’08 age group. First, the Kings battled the No. 4 Peterborough Petes to a 3-2 win. Then, they knocked off the No. 6 Jr. Canadiens 2-1. In the final, the Kings could breathe a little easier, as they topped the No. 8 Toronto Marlboros 4-1 to capture a Silver Stick banner and hardware. 

U12 Canada/11U U.S. AAA (2010)

While the two older age groups played out as expected, the 2010 age group introduced some surprises, with the Peterborough Petes taking it all. The No. 1-ranked Toronto Marlboros weren’t in attendance, but the rest of the World Hockey Hub’s Canadian Top-10 clubs were. That didn’t scare the Petes as they marched through the tournament en route to the Silver Stick. 

After recording a 2-2 tie in their tournament opener against the Gloucester Rangers, the Petes racked up six consecutive victories. They beat the Niagara North Stars 4-2 and then from there, the Petes won five games against ranked opponents in two days. On Saturday, they started with a 3-1 victory over the No. 8-ranked Brantford 99ers, and then they posted a 2-0 win over the No. 6 Sun County Panthers.

On Championship Sunday, Peterborough started with a 4-1 win over the No. 2-ranked Vaughan Kings in the quarterfinals, followed up with a 2-1 win over the No. 3 Markham Majors. In the final, the Petes bested the No. 7 Soo Jr. Greyhounds 4-1 to capture the title.

U10 Canada/9U U.S. AAA (2012)

The North York Rangers captured the youngest division at the Whitby Silver Stick, and to say they did so convincingly would be an understatement. They out-scored the competition 84-8 in a dominating weekend. To start things off, the Rangers posted a 17-2 win over the Oshawa Generals, and if that wasn’t enough to scare the rest of the field, they registered a mind-boggling 32-0 win over the Cumberland Jr. Grads in their first game on Friday. What did they do in their second game? Only a 9-1 victory over the Sun County Panthers.

On Saturday, the Rangers recorded a 9-3 win over the Oakville Rangers, storming into the elimination rounds with more than enough momentum. There, they shut out the London Jr. Knights 5-0 before beating the Mississauga Rebels 7-1 in the semifinals and the Elgin Middlesex Chiefs 5-1 in the final.

Five different players registered 20 points or more in the seven-game span for the Rangers in their dominating Silver Stick championship. 

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