Tournament dates for the 9th annual Labatt Blue Buffalo Pond Hockey Tournament have just been announced. The RiverWorks dates are Friday, February 19 through Sunday, February 21, 2016. After last year’s huge success at the RiverWorks location, this year is anticipated to be even greater due to the venue having one year under its belt. RiverWorks now features multiple food operations, a giant LCD screen, two-floors, and plenty of additional parking.
“We feel like we found a winning formula last year,” said Gina Heine, associate brand manager, Labatt Blue. “Players, spectators and fans not only enjoyed three days of hockey, but also an awesome party at Buffalo RiverWorks. As we head into our ninth year, we’re excited to build on that momentum and offer players and fans even more experiences at this iconic Buffalo tournament.”
Starting Tuesday, January 4 at noon, through Sunday January 17, team captains can register their teams at www.labattbluepondhockey.com/buffalopond. Teams that make the cut will be listed on the website on on Wednesday, January 20.
*All registrants will be divided into respective divisions based on skill levels and selected via random lottery draw.
Additional details are listed below:
Once teams have been selected, a $250 registration fee will be due. The tournament gameplay schedule will be announced on Sunday, February 7.
Tournament Structure and Format
Nearly 1,000 players will compete across the novice, intermediate, advanced and elite divisions. Tournament director Ed Ellis will oversee team registration, referee recruitment, game scheduling and other tournament details. Key features of the tournament include:
Players will skate on six refrigerated ice rinks.
Teams will be comprised of four to seven players, 21 years of age and older, who play a four-on-four format, absent a goalie.
Teams will play a minimum of three round robin games in their specific divisions, with two, 13 minute halves, on two out of three days over the course of the weekend.
Nets are six inches high and six feet wide, like the goals used in the Labatt Blue US Adult Pond Hockey Championships held each year in Eagle River, Wisconsin.
The winner of each bracket will go on to play a championship game for a tournament trophy and bragging rights.