Woody Tournament the perfect platform for NAU to give back
When Doug Allan started the NAU Woody Tournament 12 years ago to raise money for Bill Woods’ family after he passed away, nobody could have imagined what the event has morphed into in 2018.
This year’s tournament ran April 20-22 at Oceanside Ice Arena in Tempe.
Allan, a member of the NAU Sports Hall of Fame and former coach, passed on the tournament to the Northern Arizona University hockey program as a fundraiser and in 2017, NAU donated all the proceeds to Brian “Shadow” Smith after a freak accident just weeks prior to the tournament.
“When ‘Woody’ passed away from heart complications, he and his buddies had just won a U.S. Pond Hockey championship,” remembered Allan. “He had always been in great shape, so this news came as a shock to all who knew him.
“Like most hockey guys, I decided we needed to do something to honor our fallen pal and to help his family at the same time. I organized a small event at the Jay Lively Arena in town – a 3-on-3, side-to-side format, bumper pads on each blue line and it was fun. From there, our little event got increasingly popular.”
The event features two divisions – Over 50 and Young Guns. Players that skated at NAU back in the 1960s also participate in the tournament.
One participant, Bill Davis, a 1976 NAU graduate, said Allan “demonstrates a measure of human kindness and integrity that is almost unmatched in NAU Nation.”
“It was Doug’s tireless efforts that made this tournament get the necessary traction to be an annual success,” said Davis. “Over the 10 years of the fundraiser, Doug’s fingerprints were all over the three-day tournament. Doug would admit that NAU alumni took care of all the family’s expenses, but he made a number of calls to make this event happen.”
— Matt Mackinder
(April 23, 2018)