SPOONER, Wis. – SPORTS – The inaugural Superior – Northern Showdown featuring clubs from the Superior International Junior Hockey League and the Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League meeting up in a first-ever event between the two groups gets underway today in Spooner, Wis.
Taking place at the Ice House in Spooner, Wis. the SIJHL will be represented by their two-time defending league champion Minnesota Wilderness along with last season’s finalist, the Fort Frances Lakers. Representing the NOJHL is the reigning NOJHL and Dudley-Hewitt Cup champion Soo Thunderbirds along with the Elliot Lake Bobcats.
Action in the Superior-Northern Showdown begins Friday when Sault Ste. Marie meets Fort Frances at 3:30 CT/4:30 p.m. ET followed by Elliot Lake and Minnesota at 7 p.m. CT/8 p.m. ET. Two more tilts will go Saturday, Jan. 5 as the Bobcats tangle with the Lakers at 3:30 CT/4:30 p.m. and the T-Birds take on the Wilderness at 7 p.m. CT/8 p.m. ET.
One other contest will also be featured on Sunday, Jan. 6 as the Bobcats will meet the Wilderness for a second time with this match-up being held in nearby Hayward, Wis. at 2 p.m. CT/3 p.m. ET.
This first-ever event between the NOJHL and SIJHL presents an opportunity for both leagues to showcase their players to the many NCAA division I and D-3 schools that are situated in the Northern Wisconsin/Minnesota region.
“This is a tremendous opportunity that allows both the SIJHL and NOJHL to showcase the talent on some of our top teams,” said SIJHL President/Commissioner Ron Whitehead.
“With our two-time defending champion Wilderness and last year’s finalist Lakers going up against the champs of the NOJHL in Sault Ste. Marie, who also won last season’s Dudley-Hewitt Cup in Thunder Bay, and an ever improving Elliot Lake squad, the scouts and fans should be witness to some highly entertaining hockey this weekend,” added Whitehead.
The NOJHL too is pleased to be teaming up with the SIJHL in a dual-effort to showcase their talent.
“Being part of an event such as this offers tremendous potential and opportunities for all the competing players as well as both the NOJHL and SIJHL,” offered NOJHL Commissioner Robert Mazzuca.
“Going up against stiff competition in two strong SIJHL clubs will not only provide the Thunderbirds and Bobcats the chance to showcase their talents to the NCAA schools at a high level, but it should also be some pretty good hockey in an inter-league format, much like the Dudley-Hewitt Cup is every year,” added Mazzuca.
Each of the four games in Spooner will be available online through a pay-per-view basis on FASTHockey the official web stream provider of both the SIJHL and NOJHL at www.fasthockey.com.