USA Hockey Youth National Tournament back in Ashwaubenon

USA Hockey 18-U Tournament is hosted by Green Bay Youth Hockey from April 5th to April 9th (WLUK).

ASHAUBENON (WLUK) -- National Championship hockey is back in Ashwaubenon this weekend.

“Anytime you’re at a national tournament they’ve had to work hard to get here and beat some really good teams," said Dan Jablonic with USA Hockey. "This is a culmination of their hard work this season.”

The Tournament features 36, 18-U boys teams from 33 different states.

“You’ll see some teams from Pennsylvania, on the east coast, from the Midwest as well as the west coast," said Jablonic. "A lot of these kids are aspiring to go on and play college hockey most likely at the ACHA college level. Some really good hockey players though, obviously they’ve been playing for a long time.”

“They are going to see kids that are trying to play juniors. These are 18 year olds, so this is kind of the end for them," said Stephanie Dutkowski with Green Bay Youth Hockey. "They’ve been skating since they were five or six and so this is kind of the end before they go off to do their next step.”

Hockey’s probably not the first sport that comes to mind when you think of Green bay, but USA hockey says they love having this tournament here. It’s the 7th time since 2005 Green Bay Youth Hockey has hosted this event.

“We don’t think of Green Bay as a hockey town because we have the Packers, but we are a hockey town," said Dutkowski. "We have St. Norbert, we’ve got the Gamblers, we’ve got a broad and budding growing youth hockey program. They love our community, they love the friendliness of our community, they love the experience they get when they’re out and about.”

“We’re very thankful that it’s here in Green Bay and we’re excited you guys could provide the snow and the winter atmosphere for us," said Jablonic.

More than 80 games will be played between April 5th through the 9th with the championships on Monday.

The Green Bay Bobcats qualified for the tournament as the host team. The Bobcats play at the Cornerstone Community Center Thursday at 8 P.M., Friday at 8P.M. And Saturday at 6 P.M.

All the action is open to the public.

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