COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — USA Hockey announced today the 20-player U.S. National Sled Hockey Team roster that will participate in the inaugural International Para Hockey Cup Sept. 24-30 in Ostrava, Czechia. The roster includes 15 players who helped the U.S. capture gold at the 2022 Paralympic Winter Games in Beijing, China, earlier this year.
“We have a great mix of veteran players and new faces and it’s exciting to get the season started with the International Para Hockey Cup,” said Dan Brennan, director of sled national teams for USA Hockey and general manager of the 2022-23 U.S. National Sled Hockey Team. “This is a great opportunity for the team to not only represent our country on the international stage, but also to come together as a group over the course of the first tournament of the season.”
The U.S. will open play in the International Para Hockey Cup on Sept. 24 against the IPH Team, which is a combination of players from Germany and Slovakia. The full U.S. tournament schedule can be found here, and streaming links will be added to the schedule before each game.
“I am very excited and honored to have the chance to coach the team again this season,” said David Hoff, head coach of the 2022-23 U.S National Sled Hockey Team, who is returning for his fifth season. “We have a very strong group of players, and there is a lot of talent and leadership on this roster. I want to congratulate all the players for being selected, and I am looking forward to growing with them as a group.”
Following the International Para Hockey Cup, the roster will be trimmed to 17 players.
The returning team members are highlighted by four-time Paralympic gold medalist and five-time world champion Josh Pauls (Green Brook, N.J.), who captained the U.S. National Sled Hockey Team the past four seasons, winning two Paralympic gold medals and two world championships in that time.
Declan Farmer (Tampa, Fla.), a three-time Paralympic gold medalist and three-time world champion, is returning for the 2022-23 season after pacing all players at the Paralympics with 18 points and 11 assists. He is joined by fellow forward Brody Roybal (Northlake, Ill.), who finished the 2022 Paralympics tied for the tournament lead with eight goals.
Other returners from the gold medal-winning 2022 Paralympic Team include Ralph DeQuebec (San Pedro, Calif.), Travis Dodson (Deming, N.M.), David Eustace (Stoneham, Mass.), Noah Grove (Frederick, Md.), Malik Jones (Aurora, Colo.), Griffin LaMarre (Haverhill, Mass.), Kevin McKee (Davenport, Iowa), Josh Misiewicz (La Grange, Ill.), Evan Nichols (Haymarket, Va.), Jack Wallace (Franklin Lakes, N.J.), Joseph Woodke (Nashville, Tenn.) and Kyle Zych (South Hadley, Mass).
Five players will be making their U.S. National Sled Hockey Team debut in the International Para Hockey Cup, including Chris McCoy (O’Fallon Mo.), Rob Easley (Denver, Colo.), Brett Bolton (Rockledge, Fla.), Nick Witkowski (Land O Lakes, Fla.), and Ben Musselman (Amelia, Ohio). All five previously spent time with the U.S Men’s Development Sled Team.
NOTES: The roster features players ranging in age from 16 to 39, with an average age of 26 … Players hail from 13 different states, with Florida and Massachusetts leading the way with three each, followed by California, Colorado, Illinois, and New Jersey each with two … Corey Gorder (Bottineau, N.D.) will serve as assistant coach to head coach David Hoff, with other staff members including athletic trainer Mike Cortese (Boynton Beach, Fla.), team physician Dr. Mike Uihlein (Grafton, Wis.), and equipment manager Matt Levine (Colorado Springs, Colo.).