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Minnesota Scores Big at Annual Disabled Hockey Festival

By Minnesota Hockey, 04/25/16, 7:00PM CDT

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The 12th annual USA Disabled Hockey Festival was a resounding success for the seven teams in attendance from Minnesota, especially the Minnesota Warriors. The two Warriors’ teams both claimed a festival championship in their respective Warriors/Standing Amputee A & B divisions.

“It was a great experience for the veterans,” said Barry Ford, Vice President of Operations and coach for the Warriors. “Both teams were all smiles and throwing their sticks and gloves in the air just like the little guys after they won. I was very touched by that.”

The Warriors’ top team breezed through the competition, winning all four of their matchups by a combined score of 39-7. In the other division, the Minnesota Warriors faced stiff tests in each game. The team won a pair of 3-1 games before dropping their third game 5-3. Thankfully, their 2-1 record was good enough to get them into the championship, where they came from behind in the third period to beat the Michigan Warriors by a score of 5-4.

Next year, the Warriors plan to send all three of their teams to the USA Disabled Hockey Tournament.

Minnesota Sled Hockey: 

In sled hockey action, both the Minnesota Jr. Wild and Hope, Inc from Moorhead moved up to the Youth Sled B Division where they could square off against stronger competition.

The move proved to be challenging in a good way. The Jr. Wild finished second in their pool after earning solid wins over Cincinnati and the Northeast Passage. They stepped up their play throughout the weekend but ended up falling to the Jr. Sled Preds 3-1 in the 3rd place game.

“Detroit was a huge success for the team,” said Jr. Wild coach Mike Ahern. “They stepped up to the challenge at hand. I couldn’t be more proud of our boys.”

Despite finishing on the short end of three very close games in pool play, the festival was another great step in the right direction for Hope, Inc. President Adair Grommesh noted the festival was a great opportunity for the team to learn and grow together, and that the memories they made will continue to strengthen the team’s friendships and bond together.

The Minnesota Wild adult sled team had a similar showing as Hope, Inc. The team lost several close games but continued to show signs of development as they adjust to the competition level in the Adult Sled B Division.

Minnesota Special Hockey: 

The two teams from Minnesota Special Hockey featured a handful of first time participants this year, and they all reported that they had a fantastic time. The teams played two "A" games and two "B" games on Friday and followed that up with another game at each level on Saturday.

Playing against some pretty good teams, Minnesota Special Hockey finished the festival with a couple losses and a couple wins. The most exciting game of the weekend was their last game which proved to be a barn burner with the Wisconsin Timberwolves.

With so much fun and excitement, many of Minnesota’s teams are already starting to plan for next year’s USA Hockey Disabled Festival, which will be held on April 6-9 in San Jose, CA.  For additional details on the 2016 USA Disabled Hockey festival, click here

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The 12th annual USA Disabled Hockey Festival was a resounding success for the seven teams in attendance from Minnesota, especially the Minnesota Warriors. The two Warriors’ teams both claimed a festival championship in their respective Warriors/Standing Amputee A & B divisions.

“It was a great experience for the veterans,” said Barry Ford, Vice President of Operations and coach for the Warriors. “Both teams were all smiles and throwing their sticks and gloves in the air just like the little guys after they won. I was very touched by that.”

The Warriors’ top team breezed through the competition, winning all four of their matchups by a combined score of 39-7. In the other division, the Minnesota Warriors faced stiff tests in each game. The team won a pair of 3-1 games before dropping their third game 5-3. Thankfully, their 2-1 record was good enough to get them into the championship, where they came from behind in the third period to beat the Michigan Warriors by a score of 5-4.

Next year, the Warriors plan to send all three of their teams to the USA Disabled Hockey Tournament.

Minnesota Sled Hockey: 

In sled hockey action, both the Minnesota Jr. Wild and Hope, Inc from Moorhead moved up to the Youth Sled B Division where they could square off against stronger competition.

The move proved to be challenging in a good way. The Jr. Wild finished second in their pool after earning solid wins over Cincinnati and the Northeast Passage. They stepped up their play throughout the weekend but ended up falling to the Jr. Sled Preds 3-1 in the 3rd place game.

“Detroit was a huge success for the team,” said Jr. Wild coach Mike Ahern. “They stepped up to the challenge at hand. I couldn’t be more proud of our boys.”

Despite finishing on the short end of three very close games in pool play, the festival was another great step in the right direction for Hope, Inc. President Adair Grommesh noted the festival was a great opportunity for the team to learn and grow together, and that the memories they made will continue to strengthen the team’s friendships and bond together.

The Minnesota Wild adult sled team had a similar showing as Hope, Inc. The team lost several close games but continued to show signs of development as they adjust to the competition level in the Adult Sled B Division.

Minnesota Special Hockey: 

The two teams from Minnesota Special Hockey featured a handful of first time participants this year, and they all reported that they had a fantastic time. The teams played two "A" games and two "B" games on Friday and followed that up with another game at each level on Saturday.

Playing against some pretty good teams, Minnesota Special Hockey finished the festival with a couple losses and a couple wins. The most exciting game of the weekend was their last game which proved to be a barn burner with the Wisconsin Timberwolves.

With so much fun and excitement, many of Minnesota’s teams are already starting to plan for next year’s USA Hockey Disabled Festival, which will be held on April 6-9 in San Jose, CA.  For additional details on the 2016 USA Disabled Hockey festival, click here

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