COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - The ninth annual Labatt Blue/USA Hockey Pond Hockey National Championships are set to take place this weekend (Feb. 7-9) on Dollar Lake in Eagle River, Wis. The event will feature 336 teams and nearly 2,300 players participating in 600 games on 30 rinks.
Players in the 2014 Labatt Blue/USA Hockey Pond Hockey National Championships will represent 30 different states, including Arizona, California, Colorado, Delaware, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, Nevada, North Carolina, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin. Teams will play in 19 different divisions, including five women's divisions, on an ice surface currently 20 inches thick. Registration for the event opened July 29, 2013, and was completely sold out two days later on July 31.
The immense popularity of the event has resulted in continued expansion over the years. In 2012, the event attracted 281 teams that took part in 511 games on 24 rinks. Last year, the Labatt Blue/USA Hockey Pond Hockey National Championships featured 28 rinks and 18 divisions. The inaugural event in 2006 included 40 teams and 240 players.
Full coverage of the Labatt Blue/USA Hockey Pond Hockey National Championships can be found here. Additionally, the USA Hockey Adult Events app, which launched last week on Android and iOS devices, will provide participants, spectators, and fans with the opportunity to follow all teams, divisions and games. The USA Hockey Adult Events app is available in the Apple App Store and on Google Play.
In addition to Labatt Blue/USA Hockey Pond Hockey National Championships game action, a specially designed, 300-by-130-foot rink will be on display Saturday (Feb. 8). Participants will be encouraged to play on the rink, which will simulate what it's like for an 8-and-under player skating on an NHL-sized ice sheet.