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Icemen compete Grizzlies in Commander’s Cup hockey

EIELSON AIR FORCE BASE, Alaska -- Under the leadership of the Fairbanks Hockey Hall of Fame, squads from Eielson and Fort Wainwright are joining other Fairbanks hockey organizations to celebrate the town's favorite sport.

What began in 2006 as Hockey DAY in Fairbanks has grown into Hockey WEEK in 2007. The festivities are scheduled for the week of Jan. 13-20.

The Eielson Icemen Hockey Club skates against the Fort Wainwright Grizzlies in a Commander's Cup competition 4:15 p.m. at the Big Dipper Ice Arena Jan. 13.

The winner of the challenge hands the cup to their installation commander for safe keeping. Although the Commander's Cup was cancelled last year due to extended military deployments, the Fort Wainwright Grizzlies will get a chance to win the cup back from the Eielson Icemen. The Icemen have kept the cup safely displayed at the Eielson fitness center in the interim.

The match-up is quickly gaining momentum as one of the Interior's most heated athletic rivalries since the competition for the cup began in 1996.

Although the game is technically a no-check game, on-ice tensions always run high when the two teams meet.

"The game is played under the same Hockey USA rules used in the Fairbanks men's hockey league which includes "rub-outs," said Iceman team captain and coach Dan Morin. "I'm sure fans will see a good game." Admission to the Commander's Cup game is free.

The Fairbanks Ice Dogs take on the Wichita Falls Wildcats in North American Hockey League action immediately following the Eielson game.

Military discount tickets for Ice Dogs games are available at the Eielson skills development center. Ice Dog tickets are also available at Sport King, Play-It-Again Sports and the Big Dipper box office. Come out and show your support for our Icemen Hockey Club!