19th, February 2015
Toronto, ON – The Canadian Electric Wheelchair Hockey Association Toronto Division will be hosting this year’s highly competitive national hockey tournament where athletes will compete to take home the Whitecap Cup.
More than 50 players will be competing from Calgary, Winnipeg, London, Toronto, and Ottawa. Male and female players ranging in age from 15 to 60 with various disabilities will play in the round-robin style tournament. The four day event, at Humber College – North Campus, will consist of 15 fast-paced games from July 31st through August 3rd.
CEWHA Toronto Division President Paul Desaulniers said that players will dedicate a considerable amount of time preparing for this year’s tournament, “These tournaments are highly competitive,” said Desaulniers. “I would say the Toronto Rock spends upwards of seven months practicing in advance.”
Bob Cassidy, CEWHA Executive Director, said that every year gets more competitive and he is impressed to see the level of performance from all of the teams. “Players are able to perform at a level that they maybe they never knew they could perform at,” said Cassidy. “We don’t get these feelings a lot in everyday life.”
Players say that the annual tournament is the pinnacle of their performance. “The intensity of it, the tournament feel, all the players just want to win, they all play their hardest. Playing at that level is just exhilarating, to play against that kind of skill. It’s probably the closest to the NHL as we get,” said 11 year veteran, Alex McLean.
Long time CEWHA supporter and parent Kelly Keddy said she hopes to see a big turnout for the event as it’s bound to be exciting, “It’s an awesome organization,” said Keddy. “Just come see what’s involved, it’s an amazing sport!”
The CEWHA is the Canadian Electric Wheelchair Hockey Association. Established in 1980, the organization is a non-profit charity registered with the Canada Revenue Agency. They provide a quality hockey program for all persons with disabilities who have limited upper body strength and/or mobility, who could significantly benefit from the use of an electric wheelchair in competitive sport and daily living. The organization has expanded across the country since its inception to include divisions in five cities, Calgary, Winnipeg, London, Toronto, and Ottawa. Each division ranges in size, from approximately 30-40 players, who play weekly from October to May each season.
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