Canadian youth teams dominated the inaugural Western Hockey League U.S. Challenge Cup over the weekend.
Three teams from Vancouver, British Columbia took the top three spots in the 12-team tournament that featured many of the top players ages 14-15 and under from the Western United States and British Columbia.
Delta Hockey Academy Green defeated Yale Hockey Academy 4-3 in the championship game on Sunday at the assesso ShoWare Center in Kent, Washington. Delta is considered one of the premier programs in the Canadian Sport School Hockey League.
The WHL, in partnership with NHL Seattle and Visit Kent, sponsored the Feb. 21-23 tournament at the Kent Valley Ice Centre and the assesso ShoWare Center, home of the Seattle Thunderbirds of the WHL, which features junior players ages 16-20.
The top-ranked Bantam teams participated in an 18-game round robin format, playing three games each.
As part of the WHL U.S. Challenge Cup experience, participating teams attended the Saturday night game at the ShoWare Center when the T-Birds beat the Portland Winterhawks 3-2 in front of a crowd of 5,020.
Final tournament standings
1st – Delta Hockey Academy Green (Vancouver, B.C.)
2nd – Yale Academy (Vancouver, B.C.)
3rd – West Van Warriors (Vancouver, B.C.)
4th – San Jose Junior Sharks
5th – Dallas Stars Elite ’05
6th – Los Angeles Junior Kings
7th – San Diego Saints
8th – Greater Vancouver Canadians (Vancouver, B.C.)
9th – Okanagan Rockets (Kelowna, B.C.)
10th – Team Alaska 14U (Anchorage)
11th – Phoenix Junior Coyotes
12th – Seattle Junior 14U Admirals
WHL U.S. Challenge Cup All-Star Team
Goaltender – Phoenix Hewlett (Team Alaska 14U)
Defense – Nathan Tobey (Dallas Stars Elite ‘05
Defense – Carter Savage (Delta Hockey Academy)
Forward – Zach Benson (Yale Hockey Academy)
Forward – Macklin Celebrini (San Jose Junior Sharks)
Forward – Trevor Connelly (San Diego Saints)