U.S. Paralympics: Boston Bruins Alumni to Participate in 24-Hour Hockey Game; Sport of Ice Sledge Hockey to be Featured
February 26, 2008 - Colorado Springs, Colorado - Boston Bruins alumni will participate in a 30-minute ice sledge hockey match February 29 at the New England Sports Center in Marlborough, Mass. The game will give fans a glimpse at ice sledge hockey, a sport that will inhabit the same venue next month as the 2008 International Paralympic Committee (IPC) Ice Sledge Hockey World Championships, March 27 – April 5 come to Marlborough.
The ice sledge hockey game featuring Bruins alumni will serve as an exciting component of the first-ever 24-Hour Hockey Game, in which one 30-minute running-time game in each of the nation's 50 states will be played consecutively. The first game starts in Maine at noon EST on Friday, February 29.
The IPC Ice Sledge Hockey World Championships competition will host over 150 athletes with physical disabilities and will be held by U.S. Paralympics, a division of the U.S. Olympic Committee, in collaboration with Massachusetts Hockey. It will also serve as the most critical stop on the road to the 2010 Paralympic Winter Games in Vancouver, Canada.
Charlie Huebner, Chief of U.S. Paralympics, said the 24-Hour Hockey Game will provide great momentum for the IPC Ice Sledge Hockey Championships and will also help create awareness about the sport of sledge hockey.
“The fact that this illustrious game will be featured in Marlborough is invaluable to the promotion of Paralympic sport,” Huebner said. “It gives the general public the opportunity to learn more about the sport of ice sledge hockey, and it provides Americans with physical disabilities the ability to learn about the many opportunities that exist in sport.”
For the 24-hour game in each state, one team has been designated as "Stars" and one team as "Stripes." A national running score will be kept at the event website, 24HourHockeyGame.com.
Players of all ages, backgrounds and skill sets will participate in the event. The mite (8 & Under), squirt (10 & Under), pee wee (12 & Under), bantam (14 & Under), midget (18 & Under), high school, junior, college (non-varsity), disabled, inline and adult levels of hockey will be represented, spanning across 100 teams.
Just as in ice hockey, ice sledge hockey is played with six players (including a goalie) at a time. Players propel themselves on their sledge by use of spikes on the ends of two three-foot-long sticks, enabling a player to push himself as well as shoot and pass ambidextrously. Rinks and goals are regulation Olympic-size, and games consist of three 15-minute periods.