Hamilton, Stoney Creek land tourney for Canada’s top female midget hockey players


CALGARY, Alta. – Hamilton and Stoney Creek will host the 2014 Esso Cup, Canada’s National Female Midget Championship. The announcement was made by Hockey Canada, in partnership with the Ontario Women’s Hockey Association, Tourism Hamilton and the Stoney Creek Girls Hockey Association.

The sixth annual national championship is scheduled for April 20-26 at the Gateway Ice Centre in Stoney Creek. The Stoney Creek Sabres (Midget AA) will serve as the host team, facing off against five regional champions from Atlantic, Ontario, Pacific, Quebec and West in a five-day preliminary round, followed by semifinals and medal games. The gold medal game will air on TSN/RDS.

“The Ontario Women’s Hockey Association is thrilled to bring the Esso Cup to our province for the first time,” OWHA president Fran Rider said. “These communities will do a wonderful job of showcasing the top female Midget teams from across the country, including our very own Stoney Creek Sabres, at this high calibre women’s hockey event.”

“Hamilton and Stoney Creek are excellent hockey communities, so we’re extremely excited to bring the Esso Cup there,” said Dean McIntosh, director of marketing services and events for Hockey Canada. “We look forward to seeing Canada’s top female Midget teams battle for national championship bragging rights at the Gateway Ice Centre.”

The Ontario Women’s Hockey Association held a press conference Thursday morning at Immaculate Heart of Mary School to announce its partnership with Hamilton and Stoney Creek as hosts of the 2014 Esso Cup. The press conference also featured a floorball game to help kick off the 2013 World Girls Hockey Weekend, which runs Oct. 11-14 across the country, in conjunction with the International Ice Hockey Federation.

The Ontario Women’s Hockey Association is one of several Hockey Canada branches hosting the first-ever Long Game Initiative, with opening ceremonies, along with Atom, Peewee, Bantam and Midget games, running from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. ET at Century Gardens Arena in Brampton, Ont. Celebrity coaches at the OWHA event include Mississauga mayor Hazel McCallion and Canada’s National Women’s Team alumnae Geraldine Heaney and Angela James.