Wednesday, 12 December 2018

Temporarily Moving Southwest

This is the larger overview of the communities of Morden and Winkler in Manitoba. It has long been a hockey hotbed for women's hockey with the Pembina Valley Hawks producing all sorts of high-level talent at the U SPORTS and NCAA levels. There's a couple of kids who call the area home who played in the NHL as Dustin Penner, Eric Fehr, and Justin Falk from nearby Snowflake, Manitoba all played in the area. The Hawks bantam female team routinely is in the mix regarding Manitoba's berth at the Esso Cup every year as the Hawks always produce solid teams, and it seems that Hockey Canada is rewarding these efforts with a major tournament next year!

Hockey Canada announced today that the National Women's Under-18 Championship will be played in Manitoba for the first time in its history in the towns of Morden and Winkler! A tournament of this magnitude shouldn't really surprise anyone in and around the Morden area, though, as the town has successfully hosted the 2017 Esso Cup, Canada’s National Female Midget Championship, while the town of Winkler has been on the national sports map a numbers of times after hosting a very successful Hockey Day in Canada and being tapped for an upcoming Sportsnet Hometown Hockey weekend in March. Needless to say, these towns should be ready and willing when it comes to hosting the National Women's Under-18 Championship!

"We welcome the chance to work with Winkler on hosting the National Women’s Under-18 Championship," Morden Mayor Brandon Burley said in a statement. "Although both communities are capable of hosting large-scale events on their own, we are stronger together. We are excited to have the opportunity to build on the success of the Esso Cup."

While more news will develop as we get closer in terms of activities surrounding the games, which teams and officials will be participating, and more, I can honestly say that I will likely be booking some holidays off work to see if I can take The Hockey Show on the road for a few days down to Morden and Winkler. I love visiting the area, the community is incredible, and the hockey action will be great. Expect HBIC, if nothing else, to have reports on the action during the tournament as I apply for media credentials.

All in all, it looks like 2019 will be another solid year for women's hockey in Manitoba with Hockey Canada awarding the National Women's Under-18 Championship to Morden and Winkler. I, for one, am already excited for the tournament, and I'm hoping that Morden and Winkler continue their proven track record of putting on events that rank second to none!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

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