Meijer AAA Hockey makes final preparations for national tournament

They play their first game on Wednesday
Published: Apr. 27, 2021 at 2:51 PM EDT
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EAST LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - The Meijer AAA hockey team is on their way to Missouri to compete in the USA Hockey National Championships.

It’s been more than two weeks since they played a hockey game.

They’re itching to get back on the ice for the real thing.

“We’re ready to get there,” said Center Matthew Babinski. “We’ve done all we can in practice, so we’re just ready to play.”

“We found out our bracket, we think we have a really good draw heading into nationals,” said head coach Brian Sherry. “We’re excited about the teams we’re going to play. We’re going to watch some video of our opponents, but overall...The energy has been going great.”

Meijer will play the Anaheim Junior Ducks, Pittsburgh Penguins Elite, and the Boston Jr. Eagles.

It’s good talent.

But then again, it’s the national tournament.

“We’ve played teams that are similar to them, and we’ve beaten teams that have beaten them. We feel really confident, we feel we can make a run here,” said Sherry.

“That just pushes us to work even harder,” said Babinski. “I think we’ll do well.”

They’ll be traveling separately instead of together on a bus, which is pretty normal these days after a year in a pandemic.

“If you’ve played in this sport, you know that’s some of the best times and best bonding that can happen,” said Sherry.

But at this point they’re just glad to be playing with each other.

“We might get sick of each other, but we all know we love each other, so we’re just ready to win,” said Babinski.

The team will hit the ice for their first game Wednesday night. You can follow along with their tournament here.

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