Tuesday, January 24, 2017

No more North Star

The North Star College Cup will be no more after this weekend.

The all-Minnesota mid-season tournament will take place at the Xcel Energy Center on Friday and Saturday between UMD, Bemidji State, St. Cloud State and Minnesota (this was Minnesota State's year to sit out), and the tournament will be shuttered after that.

"Following discussions between the five institutions, the decision has been made that the North Star College Cup will not continue after this year's upcoming tournament," a statement from the University of Minnesota said. "Our institutions had hoped the tournament would appeal more to fans, however, the interest level has not grown over the last four years as we had hoped. In addition, teams have express interest in rewarding their fans with games at their home venues."

Kevin Buisman, Minnesota State's athletic director said there have been financial and general interest issues from the start. However, officials decided to play out the full rotation of teams in the event.

"Even as we made subtle changes (to the schedule), it just wasn't able to get to the level where we felt it could financially sustain itself," Buisman said.

Both Buisman and Mavericks coach Mike Hastings praised the Xcel Energy Center, and what it did to make the event special for student-athletes. "Hats off to the Xcel Energy Center," Buisman said. "They're a great supporter of hockey at all levels in the state. They were everything we hoped for as a partner."

"I enjoyed it," MSU coach Mike Hastings said. "It was a chance to play in a facility that's one of the best in the United States to watch and play a game. ... Playing in it three years in a row, it was something to look forward to."

Of course, the North Star College Cup will be long be remembered for the play in the video clip above by Mavericks goalie Stephon Williams.

Read more here.

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