DAWSON CREEK AND FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – Official puck-drop for the 2015 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge is set for Sunday, but the energy and excitement of the tournament is palpable in both host cities on the eve of pre-tournament action in Dawson Creek and Fort St. John, B.C.
The players and their support staff and fans have been flocking in all week, and all eight participating teams – including our nation’s 66-strong contingent who make up Team Canada Black, Team Canada Red, and Team Canada White – will be giving fans a preview of the sporting action to come when they lace up their skates for four exhibition games on Friday, Oct. 30.
“It has been a whirlwind four-and-a-half months since we were officially awarded the tournament, but thanks to the tireless work of volunteers, we are ready for the puck to drop,” said Barry Reynard, co-chair of the 2015 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge. “It’s exciting for us to be able to open our communities to the hockey world, and welcome players, coaches, officials, scouts, and fans to Dawson Creek and Fort St. John.”
Exhibition-game action begins at 2:30 p.m. PT with Team Canada Black facing Sweden at the Encana Events Centre in Dawson Creek, and the Czech Republic going up against Finland at the North Peace Arena in Fort St. John. Team Canada White will play Russia in a 7 p.m. game at the North Peace Arena, while fans in Dawson Creek will be treated to a Team Canada Red – United States match-up.
Group and single tickets are still available for the event, coming up Oct. 30 to Nov. 7. Information on tickets and pricing, including how to purchase, can be found at hockeycanada.ca/wu17.
The 2015 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge brings together the top players in the world born in 1999 or later. The three Canadian teams will be joined by the Czech Republic, Finland, Russia, Sweden, and the United States, forming two groups of four teams. All eight teams will qualify for the quarter-finals, with the winners advancing to the semifinals, and losers facing off in placement games. The full schedule can be found here.
The gold-medal game is Saturday, Nov. 7 in Dawson Creek at 9:30 p.m. ET/6:30 p.m. PT, and will be shown on TSN, Hockey Canada’s official broadcaster, along with the bronze-medal game and the semifinal played in Dawson Creek. All other tournament games, including 12 preliminary-round games, four quarter-finals, two placement games and the semifinal played in Fort St. John, will be available live through FASTHockey webcasts at www.hockeycanada.ca/wu17.