Monday, November 10, 2008

US Takes Gold

America Wins Gold

CAMROSE, AB – The reign of Canada West is over – there is a new champion at the World Junior A Challenge.

Seven different players scored goals and 11 had at least one point as the United States claimed the gold medal with a 7-1 win over Canada West on Sunday night in front of a capacity crowd at the Edgeworth Centre.

The Americans scored three times in the first period and four times in the second en route to victory.

Canada West had won the first two gold medals at the tournament – in 2006 in Yorkton, SK and 2007 in Trail, BC – but had to settle for silver as the Americans improved on their bronze medal from one year ago.

The game got off to an inauspicious start for Canada West and Kevin Genoe, as the netminder tried to catch a shot from American Lee Moffie that was two feet over his head, only to have the puck deflect off his glove and into the net for the game’s opening goal.

The lead doubled just two minutes later when David Gerths swatted a rebound past Genoe. Both of the U.S.’ first two goals came on the powerplay.

With the pro-Canada West crowd quieted by the early goals, Rylan Schwartz got them on their feet when he batted a loose puck behind American goaltender Mike Lee to cut the lead in half with the Canadians enjoying the man advantage.

The momentum would be short-lived, however, as Mike Cichy restored the two-goal lead late in the opening frame, swooping around the net and roofing a shot, sending Genoe to the bench in favour of Andrew Bodnarchuk.

Outshot 10-5 in the first period things didn’t get much better in the second for the Canadians, as Max Nicastro, Josh Birkholz, Josh Balch and Danny Kristo all put pucks behind Bodnarchuk to give the Americans a 7-1 lead heading to the final period.

Genoe returned to the Canadian goal for a scoreless third period, turning aside all 10 shots he faced.

The USA finished with a 39-19 advantage in shots on goal.

Following the game, the Under Armour® Undeniable MVP and tournament all-star team were announced.

American forward Mike Cichy picked up the MVP award and a spot on the all-star team. He was joined by teammates Mike Lee (goaltender), Matt Donovan (defence) and Craig Smith (forward), along with Andrew MacWilliam (defence) and Jaden Schwartz (forward) of Canada West.

That's My Take

(Nathan also is a writer for Maineiacs Post to Post and the Maine Hockey Journal. He can be reached at

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