All the scouts will be headed to Boston in 10 days to find the next fit for their teams. I'm certain at some point you have all seen the tournament, so you know how exciting it can be. I know this is a college board but with no hockey left at that level, these girls are next years incoming class. The favorite is probably Shattuck as they were number one from start to finish this season. Their roster is chock full of D1 commitments from top to bottom. It's hard to know how good the Boston Eagles will be as they had some impressive wins early on but don't play together after the new year. They list a dozen or so D1 commitments so certainly they are talented. Belle Tire is the defending 16U National Champions the basically moved up as a team to 19U and are continuing to have success. They were kind of a surprise last season but continue built on that and are certainly a threat to win again. Their roster shows that most of the team will be playing in the NCAA in the next two years split between D1 and D3. The East Coast Wizards are a team that has commitments for at least half the team to D1 programs and host of this years tournament. Maybe some of the East Coasters can elaborate on the Eagles and Wizards as they both only play together until Christmas then presumably play with their High School teams, much like Minnesota? Beyond the top four, Mission has a roster full of girls that will continue playing after this season also. They too have had a lot of success this season and can be a team that puts it all together and makes a nice run this year. I was surprised NAHA didn't make the tournament. I'd be interested to hear somebody's take on why they aren't going. The next four teams, CYA, Anaheim, Mass and Pitt are all very good too and could make a run in the tournament. These teams, on the American side, roster the frosh that we will be talking about next season so I for one am excited to see how this shakes out.
fyi...this is still 2 weeks out starting on April 5th (a week later because of Easter).
Last year i asked a Minnesota parent, why Minnesota was not sending teams to u19-Nationals the year after they had hosted the tournament. the response i got was "we don't have to. we can stay here and get the best competition". FWIW.
Hope USA hockey does not award them another hosting slot until they put up the $$ for a trip themselves.
At large teams are CYA, Spitfires, Assabet and Madison.
New England didn't like NAHA because the model wasn't prep school oriented (big deal in NE) so they wouldn't allow them to compete in the district tournament that all teams have to play in to qualify for Nationals. MN didn't really have any other eligible teams initially because the select/club/elite team approach wasn't their thing at the time so they allowed Shattuck to be eligible (I think there was one other MN program in the way back that was not very good).
i have less of an issue with Minnesota not going to Nationals then i do with USA hockey awarding them a tournament if they only support the concept of a National Championship if it is convenient. I was told many years ago that NAHA could not play as they don't follow USA hockey rules. not sure if still valid.
If the BK selects are elgible it would reason to have NAHA also be elgible. But, maybe Selects got a hold of a Tier One charter.
Looking at myhockeyrankings.com I see that the top four teams are Shattuck, Boston Jr. Eagles, Belle Tire and East Coast Wizards. I assume they are the top seeds in pool play and have to be the favorites to win it all. I wish I were savvy enough to create a poll to see who the group feels will be eventual champion, but I'm not. So, I'll just put it out there for reply. Who's going to win the title? One of these four teams, or will a dark-horse get hot and take it all?
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