This past weekend, Oct. 5 - 7, the Esmark Stars AAA Hockey Midget teams (15U, 16U and 18U) were back in action in Detroit at the Compuware/HoneyBaked AAA Classic Tournament.
The U15 Stars finished round-robin play with wins over host HoneyBaked AAA (4-2) and the Northern Cyclones (3-2) and skating to a tie with MDHL (2-2).
The 2-0-1 round-robin record advanced the U15s to quarter-final play as their bracket's number one seed where they would draw a rematch with MDHL. The U15s captured the quarter-final game with a win (2-1) over MDHL and advance to the Gold Semi-Finals to face fellow NAPHL member Meijer AAA. Unfortunately, the Stars U15 weekend would come to an end with a tough 3-1 loss at the hands of Meijer. The tournament showing improved the U15s overall record to (7-5-2-1).
Next up for the 15U AAA Stars will be the second NAPHL league Showcase of the season in Blaine, MN, Oct. 20-22.
The U16 Esmark team finished round-robin play 2-1-1. After skating to a tie (3-3) with Canadian U17 team Elgin Middlesex in their opening game, the Stars would go on to earn wins over the Cleveland Wildcats (9-6) and Michigan Hockey Advancement (TPH) (3-2). With both the number one seed and a spot in the gold semi-finals on the line, the U16s took the ice against Fox Motors. Unfortunately, the Detroit-based Fox Motors would score a pair of late goals and ice a 3-0 win and the bracket's number one seed.
The loss in their final round-robin game, relegated the Stars U16 squad to the Silver semi-finals were they would draw host Compuware U16. The host club would break open another close game in the third period and go on to win (4-1) and advance to the Silver Finals (were they cruised to an easy Silver Division Championship).
The tournament showing improved the U16s overall record to (8-5-1-1).
Next up for the 16Us will be the second NAPHL league Showcase of the season in Blaine, MN, Oct. 20-22.
The U18 Stars would find a successful formula and went on to capture the U18 AAA Championship at the event, posting a record of 5-0-1, including a 2-0-1 round-robin record. They opened the event with Mid-Am rival Gilmour Academy and skated to a tie (4-4), as Gilmour scored a couple of late goals to knot the game. The U18 Stars would claim a pair of wins in their remaining round-robin games, defeating fellow NAPHL member Meijer AAA (3-1), and the Northern Cyclones (2-1) to claim the number one seed in their division and advance to the Gold Quarter-Finals.
In quarter-final play the Stars skated a rematch with Meijer AAA, where they would advance with a hard fought (2-1) win. The victory propelled the 18U Stars to the semi-finals where they drew host HoneyBaked. The Stars would capture a 3-1 win in the semi-finals over HoneyBaked and earn a spot in the Tournament Championship where they would draw the Pittsburgh Predators.
In the Championship game, the Stars would quickly erase a 1-0 Predators lead as they rattled off four first period goals and another pair in the second period to take a 6-2 lead to the locker room after two periods. The Stars scored a pair of goals in the third period to seal a 8-2 Championship game win. The impressive showing at the event, improves the 18U Stars overall record to (12-4-1-1).
Next up for the 18Us will be the second NAPHL league Showcase of the season in Blaine, MN, Oct. 20-22.