CHA Tourney Moves to Michigan
College Hockey America tournament is on the move again.
After a one-year
visit to Grand Rapids, Minn., the six-team battle for an automatic
berth to the NCAA tournament will relocate to the Michigan State
Fairgrounds Coliseum in Detroit next March, CHA commissioner Bob
Peters told INCH on Wednesday.
women’s tournament also will be held at the Coliseum, and
the respective championship games likely will be scheduled as
a doubleheader to facilitate CSTV’s desire to air both contests.
Fairgrounds Coliseum is a former home of Wayne State’s men’s
team, and seats about 5,500 people. The attendance for the three-day
event in Grand Rapids in March was between 1,000 and 1,500 per
never been there, but the arena is enough to meet our needs,”
Glenn Murray said he has a proposal from the CHA on his desk,
and he plans to respond to it within a week. He characterized
the process as in the “firming up” stage.
looking forward to (the tournament),” Murray said. “We
want to make sure we do it right. That’s why we’re
taking our time.”
The CHA tournament
is the only one-weekend, single-site playoff in Division I hockey.
All six conference teams qualify, with the top two seeds receiving
byes. Two games are played on the first day, two games on the
second and the championship on the third.
women’s tournament, which was held in Erie, Pa., this year,
to the mix creates some logistical problems, but nothing that
can’t be overcome. One plausible scenario has the women’s
semifinals on a Thursday (most likely March 9) with the championship
on Sunday. The men would play Friday, Saturday and Sunday as they
have in recent years.
If the CHA
event runs March 9-12 as expected, it would arrive in Detroit
a week before the CCHA finals a couple of miles down the road
at Joe Louis Arena, thus avoiding any conflict.
Past CHA tournaments
have been in Grand Rapids, Minn. (2005), Kearney, Neb. (2003-04),
Lewiston, N.Y. (2002) and Huntsville, Ala. (2000-01). Peters called
the Grand Rapids effort the league’s “best ever,”
but he said Wayne State deserves a chance to host.
have not returned calls this week.
just moving it around a little bit right now,” Peters said.
“If we could find a permanent spot like the WCHA has in
St. Paul, we would enjoy that. But we’re going through the
same thing the WCHA did before it found a permanent site.”