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Abbies Hold Benefit Game
Wednesday, January 11, 2012

In order to show their support, the Charlottetown Halliwell Consulting Abbies of the Razzy's Junior C Hockey League have announced that the team will be donating all proceeds including 50/50 sales, gate admission, and any other donations from Saturday's game against the Holland College Junior Hurricanes to the families of the victims of the tragic events on December 15th in Alberta.  Game time is 8:10 at the Simmons Sports Centre.

MacLean holding the PEI Midget AA League Championship Banner after helping the Abbies win the title in 2008-09

Outside of the baseball world, the Razzy's Junior C league champions were probably the most impacted sports organization by the tragedy.  Although Mitch MacLean hadn't played a single game in Junior C, almost the entire Abbies team played the duration of their minor hockey career with him in the Charlottetown Minor Hockey system and went to school with both MacLean and Craswell.  Also, Mitch's younger brother Morgan played with the Abbies last season and has recently re-signed with the team.  He is not going to be in the line-up Saturday night, however, as he will be attending a memorial ceremony in Lethbridge earlier in the day.

Most of the costs of the game have also been donated.  Charlottetown Minor Hockey has donated the ice time, while PEI Hockey Referee's Association officials have also donated time.  League sponsor, Razzy's Road House, will also be giving away a $100 gift certificate and Mike Bernard Photography will contribute to the event.

A Facebook Page has been set up by the players to help promote the event and 320 people had signed up as attending the game as of Wednesday. 

Cory Gaudet coached Mitch in his minor hockey years.  "Mitch and Tanner were not just ball players to these guys, they were their friends," he said. "Saturday's game is one these boys will want to win and we're hoping for a good crowd to join us for a special game."  Gaudet has added that he is touched by the support that the parents and their team sponsor, Halliwell Consulting have provided.

This will be the first home game since the sad news broke for a team of players who've played hundreds of games and practices at the Simmons Sports Centre with MacLean.  "This is a great thing that the Abbies have decided to do and they should be very proud of it" added league commissioner, Jared Doucette.  "I can only imagine the impact this had on their dressing room and the emotions that will be running through the players' minds."

Doucette announced that the league will make a $200 donation to the MacLean and Craswell families from its operating budget.  "We have a wonderful group of management teams in this league who didn't hesitate to show their support."

A moment of silence will be held before the game.  There will also be a donation box at the gate for others willing to make additional contributions.

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