MIHL announces teams for 2020 Prep Hockey Showcase
Several teams are returning from long absences to play in the Michigan Interscholastic Hockey League Prep Hockey Showcase this season.
The 20th edition of the 42-team event will be held Feb. 6-8, at Trenton’s Kennedy Ice Arena.
The returning teams include Novi, Traverse City Central, Rochester United, Grandville and Lake Orion.
“From the start, we knew that there would be turnover in the teams: New teams would be added and some teams would not be selected every year but may return in later years,” selection committee chairman Chad Clements said in a release. “It is the best way to keep the high level of competition year in and year out.”
Novi coach Mark Vellucci talked about his team’s return.
“We are excited to be back in the premier Michigan High School Hockey Showcase and looking forward to competing with the top teams from around the state,” he said.
Some teams will be playing in the event for the first time.
“In order to attract the scouting community, which is essential to meeting one of the objectives, we need quality teams and high skill level players participating in the Showcase,” Clements said. “These new teams provide that element by adding to the strong competition and good sportsmanship that are the hallmarks of the Showcase.”
Ann Arbor Skyline will be making its first showcase appearance.
“We applied because as a program we are trying to continue the progress we have made the last five years and want to play the best competition in the state,” Skyline coach Jake Stripp said. “Competing in the MIHL Showcase gives us that opportunity.
“Each year our strength of schedule has gotten better, and competing in the MIHL showcase will definitely help our program in the playoffs.”
The MIHL Prep Hockey Showcase started as a 12-team, two-day event in Troy in 2001 and has grown exponentially since. It has become a major event for the scouting community.
More than 80 scouts attended the 2019 showcase. They included Junior scouts from most teams in the United States Hockey League and North American Hockey League, some NCAA Division III and Division I programs and several scouts representing NHL teams.
Scheduling for this season’s MIHL Prep Hockey Showcase will be completed in January.
“If you look at where Andy Weidenbach, Scott Lock and Todd Johnson started and where we are today, the MIHL is very proud of what it has accomplished,” said recently appointed MIHL President Brandon Kaleniecki. “All teams, players and coaches of high school hockey in Michigan have benefitted.”
Participating schools are: