The World Under-17 Hockey Challenge is set to be to co-hosted in pair of Prairie provinces for the first time in the 33-year history of the event. Medicine Hat, Alta., and Swift Current, Sask., will welcome the top under-17 players from six countries beginning Saturday.
From Nov. 2-9, eight teams – Team Canada Black, Team Canada Red, Team Canada White, the Czech Republic, Finland, Russia, Sweden and the United States – will compete in 22 games over eight days as they look to claim gold.
“After months of preparation in our community, we are excited to finally welcome the teams and fans to Medicine Hat for the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge,” said Terry Bartman, co-chair of the host organizing committee in Medicine Hat. “We know Medicine Hat and Swift Current will host an incredible event, and we look forward to watching the teams compete for a gold medal while enjoying all our community has to offer.”
Team Canada Black, Team Canada White, the Czech Republic and the United States will play their Group A preliminary-round games at the Canalta Centre in Medicine Hat, while Team Canada Red, Finland, Russia and Sweden will play Group B games at Innovation Credit Union iPlex in Swift Current. Quarter-finals and semifinals will be played at both venues, while placement games will be held in Swift Current and the bronze and gold medal games will be held in Medicine Hat.
“The Swift Current community is thrilled to welcome the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge, and we look forward to putting on a world-class event with our partners in Medicine Hat,” said Liam Choo-Foo, co-chair of the host organizing committee in Swift Current. “We are excited to host the teams as they compete for a gold medal, and I know the passionate hockey fans in Swift Current will be treated to some great international competition as we showcase the City of Swift Current to the world.”
TSN and RDS, the official broadcast partners of Hockey Canada, will air the semifinal in Medicine Hat on Friday, Nov. 8, as well as the bronze and gold medal games on Saturday, Nov. 9; please check local listings for details. All preliminary-round games, as well as the quarter-finals, the semifinal in Swift Current and placement games will be live streamed at HockeyCanada.ca/WU17.
Prior to the start of play, the teams will take to the ice for pre-tournament games Thursday, Oct. 31 at 7 p.m. MT. Team Canada Black will match up against Finland at the Crescent Point Wickenheiser Centre in Shaunavon, Sask., Sweden will play the Czech Republic at the Centennial Regional Arena in Brooks, Alta., Team Canada White will face off against Russia at the Innovation Credit Union iPlex in Swift Current and Team Canada Red will meet the United States at the Canalta Centre in Medicine Hat.
Fans looking to secure their seats for the 2019 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge can purchase a Medicine Hat or Swift Current ticket package, as well as single-game tickets for as low as $13, at HockeyCanada.ca/Tickets.
Medicine Hat and Swift Current will receive the net proceeds from all ticket sales as a legacy of the event to support grassroots hockey within the communities. Additionally, recent editions of the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge have resulted in as much as $6 million in local economic impact.
For more information on the 2019 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge, please visit HockeyCanada.ca, or follow along via social media on Facebook and Twitter.