It is almost a year ago since the World Police and Fire Games were staged in Northern Ireland and ice-hockey fans turned out to watch teams from Iceland, Canada, USA and Finland compete against local team NI Tridents.
The event was a fantastic success and the NI Tridents team are now looking forward to a trip to Las Vegas in October when they will face once again the Las Vegas Guns and Hoses ice-hockey team.
On Sunday, 25th May 2014, the team will be playing against the Junior Belfast Giants Under 20 team at Dundonald International Ice Bowl in a challenge match, supported by History of Ice Hockey Northern Ireland Facebook page.
The Junior Belfast Giants Under 20’s have competed in the Scottish Ice Hockey League and finished mid-way in the standings, with three of the players rated in the top fifty players in their age group within the league.
Five players were selected at Scottish national trials and represented Scotland at Under 19 and Under 17 level, competing in the UK conference tournament in early May at the Hull Ice Arena.
One local player at this tournament, 17 year-old Stephen Eccles, was chosen by Great Britain coaches to attend Under 18 Great Britain trials in August 2014. This was a tremendous boost for the club, coaches, and volunteers who have worked hard all season with the players. The Under 20’s are now in preparation for a forthcoming tournament at Dumfries in mid-June.
It is anticipated that the challenge match between these two local teams will be hotly contested for the new History of Ice Hockey Northern Ireland Challenge Cup. This will be a great opportunity to watch the “stars of the future” in action on ice at a local venue and will be a great event to take the family along to.
Those ice-hockey fans attempting to get over their “withdrawal symptoms” after the completion of the Belfast Giants season, can now immerse themselves in some great hockey again.
The doors are open to spectators at 17:15 with face-off at 17:30. The entrance fee, £5 per adult and £2.50 for under 18’s, will be collected at the door. Each entrant to the game will be automatically entered into a draw for a 22inch LED TV.