The North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL) has announced the release of the 2018-19 regular-season schedule. The NA3HL is entering its ninth season and serves as one of two USA Hockey Tier III junior leagues. Each of the 37 teams in the league’s six divisions will play 47 regular season games. The 2018-19 regular season will commence on September 7, 2018 and end on March 10, 2019.
The player advancement and movement during the 2017-18 season set a new standard for the league. In addition to the 50+ players who advanced to play in the NAHL throughout the season, which was the most movement to the NAHL out of any Tier III junior league, over 150 NA3HL players made college commitments during the 2017-18 season. Over the course of the past two years, over 90 NA3HL players have been called up to the NAHL. No other Tier III league in the country sends more players on to the NAHL than the NA3HL.
“We are excited to build off the recent success of seeing an increasing number of players from the NA3HL earning the opportunity to advance on to the NAHL and beyond. There is a consistent flow of advancement and NAHL teams are getting NA3HL players who are ready to play at the next level and who are very well coached,” said NA3HL Commissioner Denny Scanlon. “The release of the schedule injects some excitement into everyone as we prepare for another great year of competition and events.”
The 2018-19 season is an exciting time for the NA3HL, as the league will be at 37 teams. In addition to its regular-season schedule and playoffs, the NA3HL, which boasts a geographical footprint with 37 teams in 16 states (Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Texas, Wisconsin and Wyoming) allowing players to compete and excel academically at home, will participate in the NAHL’s high-exposure events, which attract hundreds of college, junior and professional coaches and scouts.
The NA3HL will have three events during the 2018-19 season. All NA3HL teams will compete in a league-wide Showcase held from December 16-18, 2018 at the Schwan Super Rink in Blaine, Minnesota. The second event of the season will be the NA3HL Top Prospects Tournament, which will take place alongside the NAHL Top Prospects Tournament in Plymouth, Michigan on February 18-19, 2019. The NA3HL will then finish their season with the Fraser Cup Championship Tournament, which crowns the NA3HL’s playoff champion. The event will be held from March 27-31, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois.
2018-19 NA3HL Divisional breakdown:
Central Division (7 teams): Coulee Region Chill, Evansville Jr. Thunderbolts, Milwaukee Power, Peoria Mustangs, St. Louis Jr. Blues, Wausau RiverWolves, Wisconsin Whalers.
Coastal Division (6 teams): Cape Cod Islanders, L/A Nordiques, Long Beach Sharks, Maine Wild, New England Stars, Northeast Generals.
Frontier Division (7 teams): Bozeman Icedogs, Butte Cobras, Gillette Wild, Great Falls Americans, Helena Bighorns, Missoula Junior Bruins, Yellowstone Quake.
Northeast Division (5 teams): Binghamton Junior Senators, Niagara Falls PowerHawks, Oswego Stampede, Rochester Rivermen, Skylands Kings.
South Division (5 teams): Atlanta Capitals, College Station Spirit, Louisiana Drillers, Mid Cities Jr. Stars, Texas Brahmas.
West Division (7 teams): Alexandria Blizzard, Breezy Point North Stars, Granite City Lumberjacks, New Ulm Steel, North Iowa Bulls, Rochester Grizzlies, Willmar WarHawks.