Plymouth, MN – October 7, 2018 – With victories at today’s Minnesota District Tier 1 Championships, three Minnesota teams advanced to the Girls 14U, Youth 14U and Youth 15 USA Hockey National Championships, which will be held April 3-8, 2019. Two of the teams advancing were crowned CCM Minnesota Hockey High Performance Tier 1 League champions last weekend.
The champions include the defending National Champion Green Giants (District 10) 14U Girls team, Shattuck-St. Mary’s 14U Youth team and the Green Giants (District 10) Youth 15 team. The Green Giants Girls will go on to face other USA Hockey District champions at the USA Hockey National Championships in Irvine, Calif. Shattuck-St. Mary’s will head to Pittsburgh, Pa. for the 14U National Tournament. The Green Giants Youth 15 team will travel to Plymouth, Mich. for the Youth 15 National Championship.
Girls 14U – The Green Giants, who ran the table with a perfect 15-0-0 record during the Tier 1 regular season, earned their way to Nationals for the second straight year with a 7-1 win over the Lakers (District 6). Seven different players tallied goals for the Green Giants, who burst to a 5-0 lead in the first period. Hailey Hansen earned the win in goal for District 10, stopping seven of eight shots faced.
Youth 14U – The Shattuck St-Mary’s 14U Youth team earned their Minnesota District title with a 6-1 win over the Walleye (District 3) in a rematch of last year’s District Final. Michael LaStarza led the way for Shattuck with two goals and two assists. Shattuck never trailed in the contest, building a 3-0 lead in the first period. Shattuck scored again early in the second before Landen Gunderson tallied the only goal for the Walleye. Shattuck tacked on two more in the second period to seal the victory for goaltender Christian Manz, who stopped 13 shots.
Youth 15 – The Green Giants advanced to Nationals after skating to a 5-3 win over Shattuck St-Mary’s. The Green Giants overcame an early 2-0 deficit by rattling off five straight goals. Blake Johnson potted two goals for the Green Giants, while Bennett Johnson added a goal and an assist. Spencer White stopped 16 of 19 shots for the Green Giants, who earned their second trip to Nationals in the last three years.
Minnesota will send four more teams to the National Championships with four more District games later this fall. District playoffs will be held at the Girls 16U and Girls 19U levels on October 23 at the Schwan Super Rink. The Youth 16U champion will be decided on November 6 at the Super Rink. The Youth 18U playoffs will take place on October 21 in Fargo, N.D. as part of the Upper Midwest Elite League schedule.