16U, Bantam Major teams win districts, advance to nationals


The Los Angles Jr. Kings’ Midget 16U AAA and Bantam AAA Major squads punched their tickets to the USA Hockey National Championships after winning their respective divisions at this year’s Pacific District Championships, which were showcased last weekend (March 3-6) at Toyota Sports Center in El Segundo.

The Midget 16U squad, led by head coach Jack Bowkus, forged a 4-1 record in its division, including a 5-1 triumph over the Alaska Oilers in the championship game.

The Jr. Kings opened regionals with an 8-1 win over the Everett Jr. Silvertips, followed by a 6-2 victory over the Fairbanks Arctic Lions and a 4-3 defeat to Anaheim Jr. Ducks 2.

L.A. downed Jr. Ducks 1, 3-2, in its semifinal game before besting Alaska in the finale.

Under the direction of head coach Shawn Pitcher, the Bantam Major squad forged a perfect 4-0 record at regionals, including a 2-1 overtime triumph over the Jr. Ducks in the finale.

The Jr. Kings opened the tourney with a 5-1 victory over the Jr. Ducks before besting the San Diego Jr. Gulls, 1-0, and San Jose Jr. Sharks, 2-1.

L.A.'s 18U AAA team finished its season with a 1-2 mark at districts.

The USA Hockey National Championships will be contested from March 31-April 4. The 16U division will be played in San Jose; the Bantam division will be held in Anchorage, Alaska.

For more information on the Pacific District Championships, visit www.pacificdistricthockey.com.

For more information on the USA Hockey National Championships, visit http://nationals.usahockey.com/.