The Ice Breaker Tournament, the traditional start to the NCAA Division I men’s hockey season, will be co-hosted by Bemidji State and North Dakota in 2023-24, it was announced jointly today by the host institutions and College Hockey Inc.
Army West Point and Wisconsin will also participate in the event, scheduled for Oct. 13-14 in Bemidji, Minn., and Grand Forks, N.D.
The Ice Breaker Tournament, which began in 1997 in Madison, Wis., annually brings together four teams typically from different conferences, to celebrate the start of the college hockey season. College Hockey Inc. administers the Ice Breaker on behalf of the Hockey Commissioners Association.
“It’s an honor to co-host the Ice Breaker Tournament with North Dakota and to bring these prestigious teams to our communities,” said Bemidji State Director of Athletics Britt Lauritsen. “Thank you to College Hockey Inc. and the Hockey Commissioners Association for the opportunity to showcase our hockey programs. This is the first time in Bemidji State’s program history to participate in the Ice Breaker Tournament, and we are looking forward to a successful event and some exciting hockey.”
“We are extremely thankful for our partnerships with Ralph Engelstad Arena and Bemidji State for providing this opportunity to bring great college hockey programs like Army and Wisconsin to our area,” said North Dakota Director of Athletics Bill Chaves. “We look forward to having more potential tournaments like this in the future.”
The 2023 Ice Breaker will mark the second time the tournament will be played in North Dakota (2011) but the first time Bemidji State will have served as host or co-host. The tournament began featuring co-hosts in 2022 (Air Force, Denver).
“We’re excited to join North Dakota and coach Brad Berry to co-host the Ice Breaker Tournament, a time-honored tradition in college hockey and a first for our program,” said Bemidji State Head Coach Tom Serratore. “It’s exciting for our players and our program to co-host this premiere event and to bring Army and Wisconsin to northern Minnesota. This tournament is a highlight of the college hockey season, and we’re proud to bring it to Bemidji for our students, our fans and our community.”
“North Dakota hockey is very thrilled and thankful to be a host of a great tournament such as the Ice Breaker, alongside Bemidji State,” said North Dakota Head Coach Brad Berry. “We are excited to play a longtime rival in Wisconsin, as well as welcome in a program with such strong tradition and culture as Army. We hope this will continue to grow the game of college hockey in our area and beyond.”
For more information and Ice Breaker Tournament history, including past participants and tournament champions, visit CollegeHockeyInc.com.