United States Hockey League

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United States Hockey League
Current season or competition:
2012–13 USHL Season
USHL1.png
SportIce Hockey
Founded1947
CommissionerEllis T. "Skip" Prince
No. of teams16
CountryUSA
Most recent champion(s)Dubuque Fighting Saints
Most titles(overall) Waterloo Black Hawks (9)
(Clark Cup era) Omaha Lancers (7)
Official websitewww.ushl.com
 
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United States Hockey League
Current season or competition:
2012–13 USHL Season
USHL1.png
SportIce Hockey
Founded1947
CommissionerEllis T. "Skip" Prince
No. of teams16
CountryUSA
Most recent champion(s)Dubuque Fighting Saints
Most titles(overall) Waterloo Black Hawks (9)
(Clark Cup era) Omaha Lancers (7)
Official websitewww.ushl.com

The United States Hockey League (USHL) is the top junior ice hockey league in the United States. The USHL has 16 member teams located in the Midwestern United States, consisting of players who are 20 years of age and younger. The USHL is strictly amateur, allowing former USHL players to compete in NCAA college hockey.

The Dubuque Fighting Saints won the 2012–2013 Clark Cup Championship, defeating the Western Conference Champion Fargo Force 3 games to 0 in overtime at the Scheel's Arena in Fargo, North Dakota. The Dubuque Fighting Saints also won the Anderson Cup as the 2012-2013 regular season champions.

Operations[edit]

The United States Hockey League (USHL) is the country's top junior hockey league, classified as Tier I. Like comparable entities such as the Canadian Hockey League (CHL)'s three member leagues, the USHL offers a schedule of high-level, competitive games for top players aged 16 to 20. Unlike the CHL it does not pay a stipend to its players, who thus retain amateur status and are eligible to play in the NCAA.[1]

USHL teams, which are typically located in mid-sized cities (see map of team locations), pay for all uniforms and equipment. Players live with local families, who receive a small stipend for food expenses, and either continue school or work part-time jobs. Due to their schedules more than 90% of games are on weekends, which many NHL and college scouts attend. As of 2007 average attendance for games was about 3,000.[1]

One hockey analyst stated that the USHL's first line players are as good as their counterparts in the CHL—historically an important producer of NHL players—but that the Canadian league has better third and fourth lines. In 2006, 155 USHL players committed to NCAA Division I hockey teams, while Trevor Lewis, the 17th pick in the NHL Entry Draft, was the first USHL player to sign an NHL contract immediately after playing in the league.[1]

Teams[edit]

Current USHL team locations (Eastern Conference teams in red; Western Conference teams in blue)
Eastern Conference
TeamFoundedArenaCity
Cedar Rapids RoughRiders1999Cedar Rapids Ice ArenaCedar Rapids, Iowa
Chicago Steel2000Edge Ice ArenaBensenville, Illinois
Dubuque Fighting Saints2010Mystique Ice CenterDubuque, Iowa
Green Bay Gamblers1994Resch CenterGreen Bay, Wisconsin
Indiana Ice2004Bankers Life FieldhouseIndianapolis, Indiana
Muskegon Lumberjacks2010L. C. Walker ArenaMuskegon, Michigan
USA Hockey National Team Development Program1996Ann Arbor Ice CubeAnn Arbor, Michigan
Youngstown Phantoms2003Covelli CentreYoungstown, Ohio
Western Conference
TeamFoundedArenaCity
Des Moines Buccaneers1980Buccaneer ArenaUrbandale, Iowa
Fargo Force2008Scheels ArenaFargo, North Dakota
Lincoln Stars1996Ice BoxLincoln, Nebraska
Omaha Lancers1986Ralston ArenaOmaha, Nebraska
Sioux City Musketeers1972Gateway ArenaSioux City, Iowa
Sioux Falls Stampede1999Sioux Falls ArenaSioux Falls, South Dakota
Tri-City Storm2000Viaero Event CenterKearney, Nebraska
Waterloo Black Hawks1962Young ArenaWaterloo, Iowa
2014-15 Expansion
TeamFoundedArenaCity
Madison2013Alliant Energy CenterMadison, Wisconsin

History[edit]

Precursors to this league were:

American Amateur Hockey League[edit]

The United States Hockey League was established as the American Amateur Hockey League in 1947 and began play for the 1947-48 season. When the league began operations it had five teams in and around the twin cities arena along with a team in Rochester. The league was made up three clubs from St. Paul which were 7-Up, Koppy's and Tally's. Two from Minneapolis Jersey's and Bermans. Along with a team from Rochester called the Rochester Mustangs. After the 1947-48 season the St. Paul Tally's dropped out of the league and left the five remaining members to make up the league for the 1948-49 and 1949-50 seasons. For the 1950-51 season the St. Paul 7-Up and St. Paul Koppy's merged and became St. Paul 7-Up/Koppy's. The Minneapoils Bermans dropped out of the league and new team called the Twin City Fords were added to give the American Amateur Hockey League four teams for 1950-51 season. The Rochester Mustangs were the only club to returned for the fifth and final season of the American Amateur Hockey League in 1951-52. Gone were the St. Paul 7-Up/Koppy's, Twin City Fords and the Minneapolis Jerseys. Replaced by the St. Paul Saints, Hibbing Flyers, Minneapolis Millers, Eveleth Rangers and the first club based outside of the state of Minnesota the Sioux City Iowa Sunhawks. Which gave the league six clubs for 1951-52.

Central Hockey League[edit]

The American Amateur Hockey League was renamed the Central Hockey League for the 1952-53 season. Only five of the clubs who had made up the American Amateur Hockey League for 1951-52 season returned. Those clubs were the Rochester Mustangs, St. Paul Saints, Minneapolis Millers, Hibbing Flyers and the now called Eveleth-Virginia Rangers. Gone were the Sioux City Sunhawks.

Minnesota Hockey League[edit]

After a year as the Central Hockey League the league was renamed the Minnesota Hockey League and would be called this for the 1953-54 and 1954-55 seasons. Only two teams who had made up the Central Hockey League returned to make up the Minnesota Hockey League for the 1953-54 season. Those teams were the Rochester Mustangs and the Hibbing Flyers. Gone were the St. Paul Saints. Minneapolis Millers and the Eveleth-Virginia Rangers. The Grand Forks Red Wings were added and gave the league three teams for 1953-54 season. The Rochester Mustangs were the only team to return for the second and final season of the Minnesota Hockey League. Gone were Hibbing and Grand Forks. The league added two teams in Minneapolis called the Culbersons and Bungalows and a team in St. Paul called the Saints to give the league four teams for 1954-55.

United States Central Hockey League[edit]

After two seasons as the Minnesota Hockey League the league became the United States Central Hockey League and would be called this for five years 1956 to 1960. Only three of the four teams who had made up the Minnesota Hockey League for the 1954-55 season returned. those teams were the Rochester Mustangs along with both Minneapolis clubs the Culbersons and the Bungalows. Gone were the St. Paul Saints who replaced by a team called the St. Paul Peters. These four clubs would make up the USCHL for the 1955-56 and 1956-57 seasons. For the 1957-58 season the St Paul Peters were replaced by a team called St. Paul K.S.T.P. The Rochester Mustangs were the only team to return for the 1958-59 season. Gone were St. Paul K.S.T.P along with both Minneapolis clubs the Culbersons and the Bungalows. The league returned to four teams when it replaced these clubs with the St. Paul Capitols, Minneapolis Millers and the Des Moines Ice Hawks, marking the league's return to Iowa. For the fifth and final season of the USCHL the St Paul Capitols dropped out and the league expanded to five teams and into new territory with a team in Michigan with the addition of the Marquette Sentinals and Wisconsin with the addition of the Green Bay Bobcats.

1961–79[edit]

The United States Hockey League (USHL) operated as a senior ice hockey league 1961 to 1979.[2]

The USHL welcomed the first female professional hockey player in 1969–70, when the Marquette Iron Rangers signed Karen Koch.[3]

By the late 1970s, the USHL had fallen on hard times. In the summer of 1977, clubs from the recently folded Midwest Junior Hockey League contacted the USHL. A unique merger was formed, with the three junior teams (Bloomington Junior Stars, Austin Mavericks, St. Paul Vulcans) and three remaining pro teams (Sioux City Musketeers, Waterloo Black Hawks, Green Bay Bobcats) gathered under the USHL banner. League governors decided on a two-division format, with the junior-aged teams in the Midwest Division and the professionals in the U.S. Division. The teams played an interlocking schedule that was, predictably, dominated by the professionals. The USHL's split existence would last just two seasons. The minor-pro wing of the league folded following the 1978–79 season, providing junior hockey operators with the opportunity to redefine the circuit. The 1979–80 season was the league's first as an entirely junior arrangement.[4]

The league's last season as a senior hockey league was 1978–79. During this final season the league comprised seven teams in two conferences. The U.S. Conference (with the Green Bay Bobcats, the Sioux City Musketeers and the Waterloo Black Hawks); while the Midwest Conference (with the Anoka Nordiques, the Austin Mavericks, the Bloomington Junior Stars, and the St. Paul Vulcans. All seven teams were made up with players categorized as "Senior Amateur".[5][6][7][8][9][10][11] Following the 1978–79 season the senior league teams in the U.S. Conference folded and the USHL became an all-junior league the following season.[12]

Teams[edit]

TeamCityYears
Anoka NordiquesAnoka, Minnesota1978–79
Austin MavericksAustin, Minnesota1977–79
Bloomington Junior StarsBloomington, Minnesota1977–79
Calumet-Houghton ChiefsCalumet Township, Michigan1972–73
Central Wisconsin FlyersStevens Point, Wisconsin1974–76
Chicago WarriorsChicago, Illinois1972–75
Copper-Country ChiefsCalumet, Michigan1974–76
Copper-Country IslandersCalumet, Michigan1973–74
Des Moines Oak LeafsUrbandale, Iowa1968–69
Duluth Port StarsDuluth, Minnesota1968–69 (Duluth dropped out of league on December 30, 1968)[13]
Fox Valley AstrosDundee, Illinois[14]1965–66
Grand Rapids BladesGrand Rapids, Michigan1976–77
Grand Rapids BruinsGrand Rapids, Minnesota1968–69
Green Bay BobcatsGreen Bay, Wisconsin1961–79
Madison BluesMadison, Wisconsin1973–74 (transferred to CHL)
Marquette Iron RangersMarquette, Michigan1964–76
Milwaukee AdmiralsMilwaukee, Wisconsin1973–77 (transferred to IHL)
Milwaukee MetrosMilwaukee, Wisconsin1961–62 (Milwaukee folded Jan 16, 1962, due to financial trouble)[15]
Minneapolis RebelsMinneapolis, Minnesota1961–62
Minnesota NationalsSaint Paul, Minnesota1967–68 (U.S. 1968 Olympic team[16])
Rochester MustangsRochester, Minnesota1961–70
Sault Ste. Marie CanadiansSault Ste. Marie, Ontario1968–72
Sault Ste. Marie GreyhoundsSault Ste. Marie, Ontario1972–73
Sioux City MusketeersSioux City, Iowa1972–79
St. Paul SteersSaint Paul, Minnesota1962–66
Thunder Bay TwinsThunder Bay, Ontario1970–75 (transferred to OHA)
Traverse City BaysTraverse City, Michigan1975–77
U.S. NationalsSaint Paul, Minnesota1966–67
Waterloo Black HawksWaterloo, Iowa1962–69, 1970–79

1979 – present[edit]

Defunct junior teams[edit]

TeamCityYears
Austin MavericksAustin, Minnesota1977–1985
Danville WingsDanville, Illinois2003–2004
Dubuque Fighting SaintsDubuque, Iowa1980–2001
Fargo-Moorhead BearsFargo, North Dakota1995–1996
Fargo-Moorhead Ice SharksFargo, North Dakota1996–2000
Green Bay BobcatsGreen Bay, Wisconsin1958–1981
Hennepin NordiquesMinneapolis, Minnesota1979–1980
Minneapolis StarsMinneapolis/Bloomington, Minnesota1977–1985
North Iowa HuskiesMason City, Iowa1983–1999
Ohio Junior Blue JacketsColumbus, Ohio2006–2008
Rochester MustangsRochester, Minnesota1985–2002
St. Louis Heartland EaglesChesterfield, Missouri2003–2004
Twin Cities/St. Paul Vulcans[17]St. Paul/Bloomington, Minnesota1977–2000
Thunder Bay FlyersThunder Bay, Ontario1984–2000
Topeka ScareCrowsTopeka, Kansas2001–2003
Tulsa CrudeTulsa, Oklahoma2001–2002
Madison/Wisconsin CapitolsMadison, Wisconsin1984–1995

Timeline of junior league teams[edit]

Awards[edit]

Semi-Pro Season Champions[edit]

YearTeam
1961–62Rochester Mustangs
1962–63Green Bay Bobcats
1963–64Waterloo Black Hawks
1964–65Waterloo Black Hawks
1965–66Waterloo Black Hawks
1966–67Waterloo Black Hawks
1967–68Waterloo Black Hawks
1968–69Marquette Iron Rangers
1969–70Marquette Iron Rangers
1970–71Marquette Iron Rangers
1971–72Green Bay Bobcats
1972–73Thunder Bay Twins
1973–74Thunder Bay Twins
1974–75Waterloo Black Hawks
1975–76Milwaukee Admirals
1976–77Grand Rapids Blades
1977–78Waterloo Black Hawks
1978–79Waterloo Black Hawks

Anderson Cup Champions[edit]

YearTeam
1979–80Hennepin Nordiques
1980–81Dubuque Fighting Saints
1981–82Sioux City Musketeers
1982–83Dubuque Fighting Saints
1983–84St. Paul Vulcans
1984–85Austin Mavericks
1985–86Sioux City Musketeers
1986–87Rochester Mustangs
1987–88Thunder Bay Flyers
1988–89Thunder Bay Flyers
1989–90Omaha Lancers
1990–91Thunder Bay Flyers
1991–92Thunder Bay Flyers
1992–93Omaha Lancers
1993–94Des Moines Buccaneers
1994–95Des Moines Buccaneers
1995–96Green Bay Gamblers
1996–97Green Bay Gamblers
1997–98Des Moines Buccaneers
1998–99Des Moines Buccaneers
1999-00Lincoln Stars
2000–01Lincoln Stars
2001–02Omaha Lancers
2002–03Lincoln Stars
2003–04Tri-City Storm
2004–05Cedar Rapids RoughRiders
Omaha Lancers
2005–06Sioux Falls Stampede
2006–07Waterloo Black Hawks
2007–08Omaha Lancers
2008–09Green Bay Gamblers
2009–10Green Bay Gamblers
2010–11Cedar Rapids RoughRiders
2011–12Green Bay Gamblers
2012–13Dubuque Fighting Saints

Clark Cup Champions[edit]

YearTeam
1979–80Hennepin Nordiques
1980–81Dubuque Fighting Saints
1981–82Sioux City Musketeers
1982–83Dubuque Fighting Saints
1983–84St. Paul Vulcans
1984–85Dubuque Fighting Saints
1985–86Sioux City Musketeers
1986–87Rochester Mustangs
1987–88Thunder Bay Flyers
1988–89Thunder Bay Flyers
1989–90Omaha Lancers
1990–91Omaha Lancers
1991–92Des Moines Buccaneers
1992–93Omaha Lancers
1993–94Omaha Lancers
1994–95Des Moines Buccaneers
1995–96Green Bay Gamblers
1996–97Lincoln Stars
1997–98Omaha Lancers
1998–99Des Moines Buccaneers
1999-00Green Bay Gamblers
2000–01Omaha Lancers
2001–02Sioux City Musketeers
2002–03Lincoln Stars
2003–04Waterloo Black Hawks
2004–05Cedar Rapids RoughRiders
2005–06Des Moines Buccaneers
2006–07Sioux Falls Stampede
2007–08Omaha Lancers
2008–09Indiana Ice
2009–10Green Bay Gamblers
2010–11Dubuque Fighting Saints
2011-12Green Bay Gamblers
2012–13Dubuque Fighting Saints

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Alumni[edit]

League records[edit]

Team[edit]

Individual[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Allen, Kevin (2007-02-06). "Youngsters hoping to realize hockey dreams". USA Today. Retrieved March 24, 2012. 
  2. ^ United States Hockey League [USHL] seasons at. Hockeydb.com. Retrieved on October 17, 2011.
  3. ^ www.marquetteironrangers.com. www.marquetteironrangers.com. Retrieved on October 17, 2011.
  4. ^ [1][dead link]
  5. ^ Sioux City Musketeers hockey team of the USHL at. Hockeydb.com. Retrieved on October 17, 2011.
  6. ^ Green Bay Bobcats hockey team of the USHL at. Hockeydb.com. Retrieved on October 17, 2011.
  7. ^ Anoka Nordiques hockey team of the USHL at. Hockeydb.com. Retrieved on October 17, 2011.
  8. ^ Waterloo Black Hawks hockey team of the USHL at. Hockeydb.com. Retrieved on October 17, 2011.
  9. ^ Austin Mavericks hockey team of the USHL at. Hockeydb.com. Retrieved on October 17, 2011.
  10. ^ Bloomington Junior Stars hockey team of the USHL at. Hockeydb.com. Retrieved on October 17, 2011.
  11. ^ St. Paul Vulcans hockey team of the USHL at. Hockeydb.com. Retrieved on October 17, 2011.
  12. ^ 1978–79 United States Hockey League [USHL] standings at. Hockeydb.com. Retrieved on October 17, 2011.
  13. ^ 1968–69 United States Hockey League [USHL] standings at. Hockeydb.com. Retrieved on October 17, 2011.
  14. ^ Santa's Village by Phillip L. Wenz, Published by Arcadia Publishing, 2007 ISBN 0-7385-4149-4, ISBN 978-0-7385-4149-5
  15. ^ 1961–62 United States Hockey League [USHL] standings at. Hockeydb.com (January 16, 1962). Retrieved on October 17, 2011.
  16. ^ http://www.murraywilliamson.org/Pages/1968.aspx
  17. ^ St Paul Vulcans Hockey History. Vintageminnesotahockey.com. Retrieved on October 17, 2011.

External links[edit]