MORRISBURG – It’s back! For the second year in a row, the Leo Boivin International Midget AAA Showcase will return to the Morrisburg Arena March 27-29th.
“We are really looking forward to bringing the tournament back to Morrisburg,” said Vicki Sargeant, chair of the tournament’s organizing committee. “Last year we heard many great things from people in South Dundas. For those who weren’t sure what to expect, they were impressed with the caliber of hockey on the ice.”
Sargeant said there were 12 teams expected for this year including last year’s champion, the Ottawa Junior Senators U18 team.
“I have been coaching minor hockey for over 17 years and have been to over 150 tournaments across Ontario, Quebec and northern US – the Leo definitely ranks at the top of my list as one of the best experiences,” said Steve Malette, head coach of the OJS U18 team.
Local teams including the Kemptville ‘73s U18 team and the Rideau-St. Lawrence Kings will be returning, along with a team from the Cornwall-based Ontario Hockey Academy. Sargeant said that two teams are still deep in their playoff runs so they may have to bow out of the event, but replacement teams would be added to fill the void.
The tournament will follow the same format as previous years with each team’s opening match determining which side of the tournament it will remain in. The six winning teams will play in the Leo Boivin championship side, while the other six teams will play in the Dr. Peters consolation side.
The tournament begins Friday morning, March 27th, and the official opening ceremony will take place at 7 p.m. A skills competition will be held the following day, also at 7 p.m. The fan-favourite “Final Flood” ceremony by supporter group “The Row” will take place between the second and third periods of the Leo championship game on March 29th. Sargeant said there is a lot of preparation involved with staging a tournament like The Leo but the committee has been working with the municipality of South Dundas to get ready.
The tournament moved to Morrisburg in 2019 after the forced closure of the Leo Boivin arena in Prescott in August 2018. The Leo committee, along with several other groups are in the process of fundraising, along with the Town of Prescott, to rebuild the arena.
Ottawa Senators Alumni return
To kick off the annual Leo Boivin Classic AAA tournament (March 27-29), the Ottawa Senators’ Alumni team will b
e returning to the Morrisburg Arena March 25th.
The alumni game will feature a team of former Ottawa Senators players, along with other former NHL players, taking on a team of minor hockey coaches from the South Dundas Lions and South Grenville Rangers organizations.
Before the Alumni game, an exhibition game between the South Dundas and South Grenville Initiation-level teams will take place.
Admission to the alumni game is $5 per person at the door. Puck drop for the Initiation game is 6 p.m., and 7 p.m. for the alumni game.