CAHA state tournament revamps format for 2016-17 season
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Colorado Amateur Hockey Association (CAHA) officials want every eligible youth hockey team in the state to have an opportunity to participate in the organization’s recreation state tournament.
That’s why the format was changed before the 2014-2015 season. No longer are only the top two teams in a CAHA-sanctioned league allowed to participate in the tournament.
As the new look enters its third year, CAHA officials are happier than ever about the switch.
“Teams don’t have to worry so much about league standings – they can focus on skill development, especially if a team is off to a slow start,” said CAHA vice president Christina Cooley. “Then let’s say you have a team that finishes 0-16. Maybe it’s in the wrong division. It can play against more competitive teams in the state tournament.”
There are 17 divisions in the state tournament. Pool play and semifinal/final weekends for the 2016-2017 season will be March 3-5 and March 10-12.
Many championship games will be played at the Pepsi Center in Denver, home of the NHL’s Colorado Avalanche.
“It’s a wonderful experience for the kids – they smile from ear to ear the entire time,” Cooley said. “Everything is just like an NHL game. Players’ names are announced on the PA system and the game action is shown on the scoreboard.”
In another effort to make sure all eligible teams have a chance to participate in the state tournament, CAHA does not sanction any other tournament while the state tournament is being played.
High school and prep school teams aren’t allowed to participate in the state tournament. Nor are tournament or all-star teams or teams that play at the AAA level.
Youth recreational teams must play 14 games to be eligible. Players must have participated in a minimum of 10 of the 14 games and practiced regularly with their team to be eligible.
Girls recreational teams have similar rules.
The tournament committee places teams in divisions and seeds them to ensure parity.
Here are the state tournament divisions, pool play weekends and locations, semifinal/final weekends and entry fees. All semifinals and finals will be played in the Denver/Front Range area.
Registration will be done online this season for the first time. CAHA will send information about registration to association members. Deadline to register and for fees to be paid is Dec. 31. Fees are not refundable after Dec. 31.
Questions should be sent via email to Cooley at email@example.com.
10U A — March 3-5 (Monument), March 10-12, $800.
10U B — March 3-5 (Colorado Springs), March 10-12, $800.
10U C — March 3-5 (Littleton), March 10-12, $800.
10U undeclared — March 3-5 (Fort Collins), March 10-12, $800.
10U girls — March 3-5 (Aspen), March 3-5, $800.
12U AA — March 3-5 (Denver), March 10-12, $850.
12U A — March 3-5 (Boulder), March 10-12, $850.
12U B — March 3-5 (Boulder), March 10-12, $850.
12U undeclared — March 3-5 (Denver), March 10-12, $850.
12U girls — March 3-5 (Aspen), March 3-5, $800.
14U A — March 3-5 (Denver), March 10-12, $900.
14U B — March 3-5 (Breckenridge), March 10-12, $900.
14U undeclared — March 3-5 (Denver), March 10-12, $900.
14U girls — March 3-5 (Aspen), March 3-5, $800.
16U girls — March 3-5 (Aspen), March 3-5, $800.
18U — March 10-12 (Denver), March 10-12, $900.
19U girls — March 3-5 (Aspen), March 3-5, $800.
– Steve Stein