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Empire Final Four Provides Seeding for Nationals


The past weekend at Foxboro was an exciting one, as the four survivors of the preliminary round met to crown a League Champion and determine the seeding for the Tier III B National Tournament at Marlboro (March 27-31, 2009).

The preliminary round consisted of two 8 team events. The top teams of the American Conference met at the Ice Rink at Warwick, while their National Conference cousins played at Haverhill, Mass. The format was double elimination…2 losses and you load up the bus for home, survive, and it’s off to Foxboro.

The Final Four was to be a traditional round robin tourney…however, the double elimination approach was so well received that the four participants agreed to follow that format in the Finals.

Friday the 13th proved lucky for the Junior Bruins and the Tri State Selects as they both doubled up their opponents with identical 6-3 scores. This set the games for Saturday and had the New Hampshire Monarchs hosting the Pittsburgh Penguins to decide who would move on and who would leave town with the 4th seed.

The game did not disappoint in terms of being a hard fought nail biter. After being out shot 41-24, the Monarchs hung on to pull off a 2-1 victory and avenge their regular season loss to the Pens. They then waited for the outcome of the Tri State v. Junior Bruins contest.

This was another close one, with the Selects ultimately edging the Bruins 4-3 and sending them off to play the Monarchs on Sunday morning.

When the Junior Bruins beat the Monarchs, they sent them back to Hooksett with the # 3 seed and then waited for the final game with Tri State to determine the playoff winner and # 1 seed to Marlboro.

The final game of the weekend ended in overtime when the Bruins squeaked out a 2-1 OT win and took the playoff championship with 3 wins.

The league’s final seeding at Nationals is as follows, along with the team’s overall season finish in parenthesis:
# 1 Junior Bruins (4)
# 2 Tri State Selects (5)
# 3 New Hampshire Jr Monarchs (1)
# 4 Pittsburgh Jr Penguins (2)
# 5 Apple Core (3)

There were a lot of solid teams in the League this past season and the old adage of “any given Sunday” applied to most of the games played this past campaign, regardless of the day they were played. Still, there is another adage about cream rising that applies and the league is sending its best to the big dance at the end of the month.

The Tier III B National Tournament is a 12 team event. There are 3 Divisions of 4 teams each as follows:

Division One

Division Two

Division Three




Central Penn Panthers

Junior Bruins

Jacksonville Ice Dogs

Mass Maple Leafs (CHA)

Metro Moose (CHA)

Tri State Selects

Pittsburgh Jr Penguins

Suffolk PAL

Walpole Express

New Jersey Titans

Apple Core

New Hampshire Jr Monarchs

The complete Tier III schedule and game results can be followed on Pointstreak by clicking on the following link:



National Championship

March 27-31, 2009

New England Sports Center

 Marlborough, Mass.

schedule 2009

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