Elk River Lodge hosts Saskatchewan U11 hockey teams for ‘The Battle on the Pond’ | PKBNEWS

The pond behind Elk Ridge Lodge, just outside the gates of Prince Albert National Park, has been transformed into a dream pond for Saskatchewan Hockey Day on January 21.

Six U11 teams – two from Saskatoon, the Renegade Rattlers and the Flyer Phantoms – along with the Regina Monarchs, Prince Albert Bulldogs, Humboldt Broncos and Battleford Barons made up the tournament which has been dubbed “The Battle on the Pond”.

“It all started with our team manager Christina and our head coach Darrin sitting down for our first meeting together, and what we wanted to do this year for the tournaments,” said the Saskatoon Renegades Wranglers team treasurer. , Paula Weiss.

“Outdoor had come, and I said, ‘Why not do Elk Ridge? Give it a whirl,” and she was on the phone the next day with the SMHA to make sure we could do it and it was sanctioned. Then she was on the phone with Elk Ridge and they jumped on board.

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This pond hockey tournament was the first of its kind — the first to be sanctioned by the Saskatchewan Minor Hockey Association. Ultimately, the organizers wanted an event like this to be one that the children would remember fondly.

“Your blades don’t get all snowy, which is a little bit different, so you’re not throwing snow at yourself in the locker room,” said Ben Slugotski of the Saskatoon Flyers.

Tayla Olson of the Humboldt Broncos added: “I think we have a chance to win it and yeah, I think we’ll remember it when we’re older.”

“It’s cold outside and the ice is a little bumpy,” said Kaelan Deranger of the Prince Albert team.

Parents and coaches felt that this tournament will be one the kids will always remember.

“A once-in-a-lifetime experience and they had the chance to participate and will be happy with it for the rest of their lives,” said Aaron Friedman of the Battleford Barons.

“We were just praying to get in, and once we heard our kids were just thrilled,” added Chad Knaus, Humboldt Broncos U11 team coach for the tournament.

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Elk Ridge is a perfect example of one of Saskatchewan’s many winter wonders, and adding an official pond tournament to become an annual event for Saskatchewan Minor Hockey Week seemed like the perfect fit.

“People probably think that’s a great idea to explore. And to be able to set the tone, or set the bar, that’s great. It’s a great place to do that. There’s endless of opportunities not only for hockey, but also for spending a truly special weekend away from the city.

With the success of this pond hockey tournament, Saskatchewan can expect more to spring up in other winter destinations in the province of Saskatchewan in the future.

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