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November is "Come Play Hockey Month"

by Staff Writer / Washington Capitals
Earlier this month over 11,000 kids nationwide laced up their hockey skates for the first time as participants in USA Hockey and the National Hockey League's inaugural “Come Play Hockey Month” which takes place during the month of November.

It was an opportunity for cities all over the country to experience the sport of hockey. With over 47 participating states, the program truly exceeded expectations. "We are absolutely thrilled with the turnout," said Dave Ogrean, executive director of USA Hockey. ”So many people helped make this such a success and it's events like this that play a major role in helping get new families engaged in our sport."

The D.C., Maryland and Virginia hockey neighborhoods helped introduce hockey to over 250 kids at various ice rinks in the area. The kids in attendance were taught basic skills about both hockey and skating in general.

This year’s premier event has already surpassed last year’s total of 9,200 participants getting involved in various hockey clubs and leagues that had previously not been registered.

The next nationwide “Try Hockey For Free Day” will come in conjunction with the fifth-annual Hockey Weekend Across America, presented by Reebok, on Saturday, Feb. 18, 2012. Those interested in hosting an event can register at

Hockey continued to be the theme of the early November weekend when the Montgomery Squirt AA Blue Devils traveled to Chicago, Ill. to compete in the Bauer International Invite AAA Tournament. The tournament hosted an elite group of 20 Squirt Major hockey programs in the US and Canada.

The Blue Devils, who call Montgomery, Md. home, won all four of their games in the round-robin portion of the tournament, including victories over the Dallas Penguins and the Chicago Mission in which they recorded double-digit goal totals.

In the final round the Blue Devils, led by their coach Rob Keegan, took on the L.A. Jr. Kings for a battle of the unbeatens to determine the winner of this prestigious hockey tournament. After regulation couldn’t decide the victor, the Blue Devils won the game 6-5 in overtime and became the tournament champions.

To see photos from the Try Hockey For Free day event, click here.
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