Greetings from Charlottetown, as the first wave of Team USA players and staff arrived late last night. While this is the first time the team will be together since its last camp in Madison, Wisconsin, at the beginning of the month, 15 players were recently together in Minnesota as their club teams participated in the 2017 USA Hockey Sled Classic, presented by the NHL. The event -- now in its eight year -- saw the Chicago Blackhawks top the defending champion Colorado Avalanche.
RETURNING TO CHARLOTTETOWN
Team USA returns to Charlottetown for the second consecutive year after winning last year’s tournament for an unprecedented third straight time. Charlottetown is also where Team USA claimed its first-ever championship in the World Sled Hockey Challenge when it defeated Canada, 3-2, in overtime at the 2009 event.
HITTING THE ICE
As a majority of the team arrived late Wednesday, Team USA conducted its first on-ice practice Thursday morning. All practices and games for this year’s tournament will be held at MacLaughlin Arena (capacity: 1,350) on the campus of the University of Prince Edward Island.
U.S. NATL SLED TEAM WINS AT 2017 TEAM USA AWARDS
Yesterday, the U.S. National Sled Hockey Team was named the Paralympic Team of the Year after registering a 10-1-0-1 (W-OTW-OTL-L) record that included an unprecedented third straight World Sled Hockey Challenge title last December and having its season culminate with a silver medal at the 2017 Para Sled Hockey World Championship in Gangneung, South Korea. On hand to receive the award was last season’s captain, Andy Yohe (Bettendorf, Iowa).
100 DAYS OUT
As part of the United States Olympic Committee’s celebration surrounding yesterday being the official ‘100 Days Out’ of the 2018 Paralympic Winter Games, captain Josh Pauls and goaltender Steve Cash were part of the celebration. Each player contributed a video detailing their excitement and the challenges ahead for Team USA between now and the start of the Paralympic Winter Games. Visit @usparalympics on instagram to see their videos.