Ford Ice Center to host South Eastern Collegiate Hockey Conference Tournament for next three years
NASHVILLE, TN (February 7, 2016) – Following a unanimous vote by members of the South Eastern Collegiate Hockey Conference (SECHC), a new, three-year agreement has been announced with Ford Ice Center to host the conference tournament for 2017, 2018 and an option for 2019.
Ford Ice Center, which is managed by the Nashville Predators, hosted the 2016 SECHC Tournament from February 5-7 this year which saw Georgia vs Florida in the championship game. The facility is a 90,000 square foot facility that includes two NHL size rinks, meeting space, concession area and off-ice training. It is also the home rink of the Vanderbilt University Hockey Club along with multiple area high schools.
“The Nashville Predators and Ford Ice could not be more excited about hosting the SECHC for the next three years,” said Danny Butler, general manager of Ford Ice Center. “This is a partnership that shows exactly what our philosophy is and that is to grow the game of hockey through all levels. With our partnership with the SEC and hosting the Men’s and Women’s basketball championship for the next 11 years at Bridgestone arena it is a perfect fit to host SEC hockey in Nashville.”
Hundreds of fans turned out over the weekend to take in college hockey at Ford Ice Center during championship weekend, which was a tremendous success.
“It solidifies the commitment that Ford Ice Center and the Nashville Predators see in the SECHC as a viable hockey conference,” said SECHC Commissioner Brian McSparron. “This is definitely a state of the art, beautiful facility committed to the growth of hockey in the south. Nashville has become the hub for southern hockey to expand its commitment to youth and college hockey players.”
The agreement between the league and the facility will provide players and coaches a state-of-the-art hockey rink and a clean, off-ice atmosphere. With the support of the Nashville Predators, the SECHC is expected to continue its marketing impact as the league continues to grow.
“Having the support of an NHL club is a phenomenal opportunity for the league,” said Justin B. Bradford, SECHC Director of Communications. “Growth and awareness of the league is important to us as we want our players and coaches to know that they have community support. All too often, students and alumni of universities in the southeast are not aware of their school having a hockey team. Having the marketing support of the Nashville Predators ahead of the conference tournament each year will greatly help us in achieving that goal.”
One of the major goals for next year’s tournament is to add video streaming for each game. For the 2016 tournament, each game of the tournament was broadcast on online radio via the Southern Hockey Sin Bin powered by Penalty Box Radio.
More information about dates for the 2017 tournament at Ford Ice Center will follow soon.
For more information, contact Justin Bradford, Director of Communications, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 615.775.7692
About the SECHC
The South Eastern Collegiate Hockey Conference (SECHC) is in its eighth season in 2015-16. Previously Divided into East and West Divisions, beginning in the 2015-16 season, SECHC teams compete in one division for the coveted ARMY STRONG Championship Cup.
The representative body of 10 teams participate in Division III of the American Collegiate Hockey Association (ACHA). All of the teams are non-varsity intercollegiate ice hockey programs at universities that are members of the Southeastern Conference (SEC) in NCAA athletics.
Of the 10 SECHC teams, nine currently play in the South region of ACHA Division III. Arkansas competes in the West region of ACHA Division III. The ten SECHC teams as of the 2015-16 season are: Arkansas, Auburn, Florida, Georgia, LSU, Ole Miss, Mississippi State, South Carolina, Tennessee and Vanderbilt.
Photo credit: Christina McCullough