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Gateway Ice Centre, 610 South Service Rd., Stoney Creek, 905-643-8668

Gateway Ice Centre, 610 South Service Rd., Stoney Creek, 905-643-8668

2014 Esso Cup coming to Hamilton

Hockey fans mark your calendars. The 2014 Esso Cup is coming to the Hamilton area next spring.

The sixth annual Esso Cup will be held at the Gateway Ice Centre in Stoney Creek from April 20 to 26, 2014 and will feature the country’s top female Midget hockey teams as they battle for the National Female Midget Championship.

The Stoney Creek Sabres (Midget AA) will serve as the host team. They will square off against five regional champions from Atlantic, Ontario, Pacific, Quebec, and West in a five-day preliminary round, followed by semi finals and medal games. The gold medal game will air on TSN and RDS.

This will be the first time the Esso Cup, which is organized by Hockey Canada, will be played in Ontario. The tournament has been held previously in Burnaby, B.C., Charlottetown, P.E.I., St. Albert, Alta., Regina, Sask., and Calgary, Alta.

“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, in a news release. “We look forward to seeing Canada’s top female Midget teams battle for national championship bragging rights at the Gateway Ice Centre.”

The LHFDQ Nord became the first team from Quebec to win the Esso Cup when they defeated the North Bay Ice Boltz in the gold medal game this past spring.

Overall, teams from the West Region have won the most titles with three (Pembina Valley Hawks in 2012, Notre Dame Hounds in 2011, and Westman Wildcats in 2009). The Thunder Bay Queens, representing the Ontario Region, won the tournament in 2010. No teams from the Pacific or Atlantic Regions have yet to win.

The Gateway Ice Centre is located at 610 South Service Rd. in Stoney Creek. For more information, visit the Gateway site and the Esso Cup site.

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