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Cochrane awarded 2019 Dudley-Hewitt Cup

SUDBURY, Ont. – The Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League, in conjunction with the Ontario Junior Hockey League and the Superior International Junior Hockey League, announced Thursday that Cochrane, Ont., has been selected as the host community for the 2019 Dudley-Hewitt Cup Central Canadian Jr. A Championship.

The town and the NOJHL’s Cochrane Crunch will host the four-team event, April 30 through May 4, 2019, at the Tim Horton Event Centre.

Cochrane was selected as the 2019 host following submissions made to the Dudley-Hewitt Cup steering committee, which included the three commissioners of the competing leagues of the DHC; Robert Mazzuca (NOJHL); Marty Savoy (OJHL) and Bryan Graham (SIJHL) as well as Ontario Hockey Federation president Tony Foresi.

Joining the Crunch at the 2019 DHC will be the respective champions of the NOJHL, OJHL and SIJHL with the four clubs vying for the Central Canadian Jr. A title as well as the opportunity to represent the Central region at the 2019 RBC Cup Canadian Jr. A Championship in Brooks, Alta.

Should Cochrane prevail as 2019 NOJHL champion, then the league finalist will also take part in the event.

“On behalf of our member partners, we congratulate the Town of Cochrane and the Cochrane Crunch on their selection as host of the 2019 Dudley-Hewitt Cup,” offered NOJHL commissioner Mazzuca.

“We also extend our sincere appreciation to all of the groups that submitted bids to host this prestigious event, added Mazzuca.

“Each of the bids were tremendous and the entire Dudley-Hewitt Cup selection committee was extremely impressed with the efforts and submissions put forth by the respective groups.”

Now in their fourth season in Cochrane, the Crunch boast the third-best winning percentage in the NOJHL over the past four campaigns.

Along with one NOJHL East Division regular season title and a East Division playoff crown to their credit, the club has also advanced the most players, from within the league, to NCAA and U-Sports programs over the past three years.

“We couldn’t be happier to share this event with the Town of Cochrane, who opened their arms to us four years ago upon our arrival,” stated Crunch president, general manager and head coach Ryan Leonard.

“We all are excited and ready to put it into overdrive over the next 12-plus months to make sure our team and our community is ready to host the 2019 Dudley-Hewitt Cup,” added Leonard.

Having the opportunity to host such an event as the Dudley-Hewitt Cup in their northern Ontario community is something the Town of Cochrane is extremely proud of and wholeheartedly supports.

“We’re excited to have the opportunity to not only showcase our progressive community and region, along with the greatest way of life in the best backyard on the planet, we’re also excited to showcase central Canadian Junior A hockey at it’s highest calibre,” provided Peter Politis, the Mayor of Cochrane.

“Congratulations to the entire team here in Cochrane for once again demonstrating to the rest of the world why we’re “Wonderfully Unexpected”. Fasten your seat belts, it’s going to be a fun ride!”

The NOJHL last hosted the event back in 2016 in Kirkland Lake, Ont.

Serving as the host chairperson for the 2019 Dudley-Hewitt Cup will be Sue Parton.

“The Cochrane DHC Host Committee is honoured and excited to be awarded this prestigious championship,” said Parton.

“We look forward to working with the NOJHL and its committees to host this event next spring.”

Additional information on the 2019 Dudley-Hewitt Cup, including ticket and corporate partnership packages, will be announced in the coming months.

Meanwhile, the 2018 Dudley-Hewitt Cup will be hosted by the Dryden GM Ice Dogs (SIJHL) May 1-5 with the champion there moving on to the RBC Cup, May 12-20, in Chilliwack, B.C.