Tuesday, October 20, 2009

2009 World Jr. A Challenge

The first of the big international events of the season is going to be taking place in Summerside, P.E.I. coming up from November 1-8. This is not the World Junior Championship that is coming up in December, this is an event where the players could have a shot that might not have other wise gotten a chance to play internationally which involves players from leagues like the Canadian Jr. A Leagues and the U.S.H.L. from some of the Canadian Junior A Leagues as well.

This is a 6 team tournament where the teams are divided into 2 groups of 3 where the teams play 2 group games. In addition to 2 Canada teams being divided into East and West along with the USA. Sweden, Russia and Belarus will also be playing in this tournament that has been growing a lot since it was created back in 2006 in creation with support of Hockey Canada, the Canadian Junior Hockey Leagues (C.J.H.L.), the NCAA and the NHL.

After the Group stage, the teams that win the groups will get an automatic spot in the Semifinals while the 2nd and 3rd place teams will cross over for the Quarterfinals where the winners will advance to the Semifinals while the losers will play for 5th place. Then after the semifinals, the losers will play for the Bronze Medal with the winners will play for Gold.

A Majority of the roster for the USA will play in the United States Hockey League with one in the British Columbia Hockey League and a majority of them haven't been drafted in the NHL Draft yet. The USA has has a strong showing in this event where they won the championship last year and finished with the Bronze Medal in 2007.

USA Roster


Eric Mihalik, Des Moines Buccaneers (USHL)

Will Yanakeff, Sioux City Musketeers (USHL)

Defense men

Kevin Albers, Green Bay Gamblers (USHL)

Mac Bennett, Cedar Rapids Roughriders (USHL)

Kevin Gravel, Sioux City Musketeers (USHL)

Nick Jensen, Green Bay Gamblers (USHL)

Kevin Lind, Chicago Steel (USHL)

Nick Matteson, Indiana Ice (USHL)

Eamonn Mcdermott, Fargo Force (USHL)


Beau Bennett, Penticton Vees (BCHL)

Shane Berschbach, Indiana Ice (USHL)

Connor Brickley, Des Moines Buccaneers (USHL)

Jeff Costello, Cedar Rapids Roughriders (USHL)

Chris Crane, Green Bay Gamblers (USHL)

Derek Deblois, Cedar Rapids Roughriders (USHL)

Nic Dowd, Indiana Ice (USHL)

David Gerths, Lincoln Stars (USHL)

Matt Leitner, Fargo Force (USHL)

John Parker, Indiana Ice (USHL)

Mike Parks, Cedar Rapids Roughriders (USHL)

Nick Sorkin, Waterloo Blackhawks (USHL)

Colten St. Clair, Fargo Force (USHL)

Warm up Games

Before the Tournament begins on November 1, a handful of warmup games will feature the different teams playing in the event. Both Canada teams will play twice, while USA, Russia and Belarus will play 1 game. An All Star team from the Maritime Junior Hockey League (MJAHL) will also be involved while Sweden won't play here.

Canada West VS. Belarus 5:00 PM @ Charlottetown Civic Center
Canada East VS. MJAHL All Stars 5:30 PM @ Colchester Legion Stadium

Belarsu VS. MJAHL All Stars 5:30 PM @ Amherst Stadium
Canada East VS. Russia 5:30 PM @ O'Leary Community Sports Center
Canada West VS. USA 6:00 PM @ Montague and Area Wellness Center

Tournament Groups and Schedule

Here's the Groups and Schedule for the Tournament. All Start Times are Central Time which is 2 hours earlier then Atlantic Standard Time where the Tournament is being played in Summerside, P.E.I. The main arena for this event is the Credit Union Place where it's the home of the defending M.J.A.H.L. and Atlantic Region Champion Summerside Western Capitals.

Group A
Canada West

Group B
Canada East

Russia VS. Canada West 12:00 PM Group A
Canada East VS. USA 5:00 PM Group B

Sweden VS. Russia 12:00 PM Group A
Belarus VS. Canada East 5:00 PM Group B

Canada West VS. Sweden 12:00 PM Group A
USA VS. Belarus 5:00 PM Group B

Off day

B3 VS. A2 12:00 PM Quarterfinals
A3 VS. B2 5:00 PM Quarterfinals

W G8 VS. A1 12:00 PM Semifinals
W G7 VS. B1 5:00 PM Semifinals

L G7 VS. L G8 5:00 PM 5th Place

L G9 VS. L G10 10:00 AM Bronze Medal
W 9G VS. W G10 3:00 PM Gold Medal

For Team Updates and the rosters for the other teams for this tournament as they come out. Also check out for team previews just before the tournament begins.

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