2020 U Sports University Cup
Halifax, Nova Scotia
Host teamAcadia Axemen
VenueScotiabank Centre
DurationMarch 12–15, 2020
Number of games8
Number of teams8
TelevisionCBC Sports GEM (online only)
2019
2021

The 2020 U Sports Men's University Cup Hockey Tournament (58th Annual) was scheduled for March 2020 in Halifax, Nova Scotia at the Scotiabank Centre, but was cancelled because of the COVID-19 pandemic after the first day of competition. The Acadia Axemen, a member of U Sports Atlantic University Sport conference, were the designated host.[1] Scotiabank Centre is 99 kilometres south of the school's campus (Wolfville). This event marked the third appearance of the tournament in Halifax, which hosted the 2015 and 2016 tournaments. This was the first time that Acadia was the host of the tournament; St. Francis Xavier University and Saint Mary's University split hosting rights (respectively) during the previous two-year stint.

The tournament format remained unchanged: 8 teams, single elimination and bronze medal games, with 3 conference champions, 3 conference runner-ups, OUA bronze winner and host.

On February 13, 2020, U Sports and CBC Sports jointly announced the tournament would be streamed free of charge via the CBC Gem streaming service in Canada.[2] U Sports' previous broadcasting deal with Sportsnet expired following the 2019 U Sports University Cup.

The tournament was suspended on the night of March 12, after the first two games had been played, due to a decision by Hockey Canada to suspend all sanctioned hockey across the country.[3] The impact of this decision was to leave the tournament with no on-ice officials and as result left the Tournament Committee with no choice but to suspend the remaining games.[4] U Sports Hockey, as an organization, is not directly under the Hockey Canada umbrella, but they do have a development partnership where Hockey Canada Level 4, 5 and 6 officials officiate U Sports hockey along with the Team Canada Junior vs U Sports All-Star games.

Road to the Cup

AUS playoffs

Further information: Atlantic University Sport

  Quarter-finals (Best of 3)     Semi-finals (Best of 5)     AUS Championship (Best of 3)
                           
        1 UNB Reds 3  
  4 Moncton Aigles Bleus 2     4 Moncton Aigles Bleus 0    
  5 St. Francis Xavier X-Men 0         1 UNB Reds 2
      2 Acadia Axemen 1
        2 Acadia Axemen 3    
  3 Saint Mary's Huskies 2     3 Saint Mary's Huskies 1   Third place
  6 UPEI Panthers 0   4 Moncton Aigles Bleus 0
  3 Saint Mary's Huskies 2

OUA playoffs

Further information: Ontario University Athletics

  Division Quarter-finals (Best of 3)
OUA Sweet 16
Division Semi-finals (Best of 3)
OUA Quarter-Finals
Division Finals (Best of 3)
OUA Semi-Finals
Queen's Cup (Single Game)
OUA Championship
                                     
1E Carleton Ravens 2  
8E RMC Paladins 0  
  1E Carleton Ravens 0  
 
  5E Concordia Stingers 2  
4E McGill Redmen 1
5E Concordia Stingers 2  
  5E Concordia Stingers 0  
  3E Ottawa Gee-Gees 2  
2E UQTR Patriotes 2  
7E Queen's Gaels 0  
  2E UQTR Patriotes 1
 
  3E Ottawa Gee-Gees 2  
3E Ottawa Gee-Gees 2
6E Ontario Tech Ridgebacks 1  
  3E Ottawa Gee-Gees 1
  3W Guelph Gyrphons 2 OT3
1W Toronto Varsity Blues 1  
8W Western Mustangs 2  
  2W Ryerson Rams 0
 
  8W Western Mustangs 2  
4W Windsor Lancers 0
5W Brock Badgers 2  
  8W Western Mustangs 1
  3W Guelph Gyrphons 2  
2W Ryerson Rams 2  
7W Lakehead Thunderwolves 0  
  3W Guelph Gryphons 2 Third place - Best of 1
 
  5W Brock Badgers 0  
3W Guelph Gryphons 2
5E Concordia Stingers 2
6W Laurier Golden Hawks 1     8W Western Mustangs 5

Note 1: The Queen's Cup championship game must be held in Ontario (part of the arrangement when the RSEQ hockey league merged with the OUA). When a Quebec-based OUA-East representative is the higher seed and should 'host' the game - the game shall be hosted by the OUA-West team instead, but the OUA-East team shall be the 'home' team and have last change.

Note 2: The OUA 'Host' rule mentioned in Note 1 now, as of 2019-20, also applies to the Bronze Medal game.

Canada West playoffs

Further information: Canada West Universities Athletic Association

Quarter-finals (Best of 3) Semi-finals (Best of 3) Canada West Championship (Best of 3)
1 Alberta Golden Bears 1
3 Calgary Dinos 2 5 UBC Thunderbirds 2
6 Manitoba Bisons 0 2 Saskatchewan Huskies 2
5 UBC Thunderbirds 0
2 Saskatchewan Huskies 2
4 Mount Royal Cougars 1 4 Calgary Dinos 0
5 UBC Thunderbirds 2

University Cup Tournament

The eight teams to advance to the tournament are listed below. The three (3) conference champions must be seeded 1-3 based on the pre-tournament Top 10 Rankings followed by the OUA Runner-up (seed #4). The remaining four seeds are for the AUS Finalist, Canada West Finalist, OUA Third-place and host or host designate if the host has qualified as one of the previously mentioned teams. Their seedings are based on the pre-tournament rankings.

More details in the tournament preview: University Cup Preview

Rank Seed Team Qualified
1 1 UNB Reds AUS Champions
2 2 Saskatchewan Huskies Canada West Champions
3 3 Guelph Gryphons Queen's Cup & OUA-West Champion
4 4 Ottawa Gee-Gees Queen's Finalists & OUA-East Champion
5 5 Acadia Axemen AUS Finalists
6 6 Saint Mary's Huskies AUS Bronze - Host Designate
7 7 Western Mustangs OUA Bronze Medallists
9 8 British Columbia Thunderbirds CW Finalists

Tournament format

The tournament is a traditional 8 team, single elimination ladder with Bronze Medal game between the two semi-final losers. Games that are tied after regulation play a 10-minute overtime period following the 3rd period. If there is no score after the first overtime, the ice is cleaned and they would play 20 minute periods (with ice cleaned between periods) until there is a winner.

The higher seed is the 'Home' team for each game (the home team must wear their 'white' jerseys and will get the last change during stoppages of play).

Quarter-finals
(Single Game)
Semi-finals
(Single Game)
Championship Final
(Single Game)
         
2 Saskatchewan Huskies 2
7 Western Mustangs 3
7 Western Mustangs -
Thursday
6 Saint Mary's Huskies -
3 Guelph Gryphons 1
6 Saint Mary's Huskies 5
 
 
1 UNB Reds -
8 British Columbia Thunderbirds -
 
Friday
 
4 Ottawa Gee-Gees -
5 Acadia Axemen -
Bronze Medal (Single Game)
   
 
 

The tournament was suspended late Thursday night, after the first two games had been completed.

See also

2020 U Sports Women's Ice Hockey Championship

References

  1. ^ Acadia to host 2020 U SPORTS University Cup http://www.acadiaathletics.ca/general/2017-18/releases/20180201cqokgb
  2. ^ CBC Sports and U SPORTS to provide worldwide English-language live streaming coverage https://usports.ca/en/news/2020/02/1768986382/cbc-sports-and-u-sports-english-live-streaming-coverage
  3. ^ Hockey Canada statement in response to coronavirus https://www.hockeycanada.ca/en-ca/news/2020-news-hockey-canada-ends-season
  4. ^ 2020 U SPORTS Men’s & Women’s Hockey Championships cancelled due to COVID-19 https://usports.ca/en/sports/hockey/m/news/2020/03/2863800770/hockey-advisory