The Alex Ovechkins, Eric Staals and Vinnie Lecavaliers of the National Hockey League are already about one-third of the way through the 2009-10 season. And the minor-league professionals and collegians have been going at it since the first of November. But the weekend before Thanksgiving, the hockey spotlight was finally on the most important hockey players in the world. Our youngsters and teenagers – along with four adult teams — were at a rink in Myrtle Beach having a delightful time playing 2Hot4Ice hockey.
The site was the SportsZone. The occasion was the first 2Hot4Ice regional qualifying tournament of the new season. All of the teams that competed during the weekend of Nov. 20-22 are now eligible to pursue the dream of a 2Hot4Ice national championship at next June’s National Games at the SGAA Dual Deck in suburban Atlanta on June 24-27, 2010.
Topping the list of Myrtle Beach qualifiers are the 12U and 14U Dream Sports Dragons Red. They finished in first place in their respective divisions. The 12U team won three games in a row after dropping 2-0 and 2-1 decisions to the Speed and Richmond Rattlers. DSD Red beat the Rattlers 4-0 in the 12U title game. Justin Boone and Jackson Foltz of the Red were named the winners of the Deebs Young Award and the top goalie, respectively. The Rattlers’ Jordan Mansini was the top dishman.
The DSD Red marched undefeated through the 14U division, notching three shutouts in five games. The Red topped off its run with a 6-1 victory over the Speed V2.0 in the division finale. DSD Red skaters took home all the division’s individual hardware. Sean Burke was the Deebs Young honoree, Justin Medwar the top dishman and Justin Schomburg the top goalie.
The Wilmington Storm also swept through the Myrtle Beach qualifier undefeated. The only blemish on its five-game record was a 3-3 tie with the Revolution, which it stopped 2-0 in the division title game. The Deebs Young Award was presented to the Storm’s Patrick Hayes. Top dishman and top goalie honors went to the Revolution’s Jeff Guertin and Peter Green, respectively.
The Revolution rebounded from an earlier 4-2 loss to the Speed V2.0 to defeat them 4-1 in the division final. The Speed’s Patrick Stollbrink took home the Deebs Young Award and Grant Laughrey was named the top goalie. The division’s top dishman was Mike LoBue of the Revolution.
The men provided the most championship game drama. The Snake Eyes won four times after dropping a 5-3 opening game decision to the Harpoons. The two teams squared off again in the finale, with the Snake Eyes prevailing 5-4 in overtime. The Harpoons skated off with all of the individual honors: Jack Hannigan, Deebs Young Award; Bruce Wilkinson, top dishman; and Chuck Farmer, top goalie.
Next up for 2Hot4Ice competitors and their families is the Raleigh, N.C., qualifier Dec. 11-13 at the Dream Sports Center in Apex. See you there!