MEDICINE HAT, Alta. & SWIFT CURRENT, Sask. – After 10 days of tournament action, the 2019 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge has wrapped up in Medicine Hat, Alta., and Swift Current, Sask., with Russia taking home gold, the United States capturing silver and the Czech Republic winning bronze.
In the gold medal game, the Russians scored the game’s first five goals, and got scoring from six different players – Fedor Svechkov, Prokhor Poltapov, Ivan Ivantsov, Nikita Chibrikov, Vsevolod Gaidamak and Danila Iurov – in all. The U.S. got a pair of late goals from Aidan Hreschuk and Colby Saganiuk, but never got closer than three goals.
Svechkov finished with a goal and two assists, and goaltender Valerii Brinkman was terrific in a 32-save performance, holding an American offence that was averaging seven goals per game goalless for more than 56 minutes.
Following the gold medal game, the 2019 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge all-star team was announced:
- Goaltender: Tomas Suchanek (Czech Republic)
- Defence: Sean Behrens (United States)
- Defence: Carson Lambos (Team Canada White)
- Forward: Daniil Lazutin (Russia)
- Forward: Chaz Lucius (United States)
- Forward: Fedor Svechkov (Russia)
Team Canada White finishes fourth after falling to the Czech Republic in overtime
In the bronze medal game earlier Saturday, Team Canada White forced overtime with less than three minutes remaining before falling to the Czech Republic 3-2.
“We were a little bit fatigued yesterday against the United States and I think today that fatigue really caught up to us, but we showed some pushback at the end coming back and tying the game. We had our chances in [overtime], so I don’t think there’s much more we could have done,” said Sylvain Favreau (Orleans, Ont./Halifax, QMJHL), Team Canada White head coach. “Overall, we had a different approach with Team White where we were really putting emphasis on team principles and the betterment of everyone’s play, and I think that will be valuable for our players moving forward.”
Brett Harrison (London, Ont./Oshawa, OHL) opened the scoring just over seven minutes into the game on a shorthanded breakaway, but the Czech Republic answered with goals by Petr Moravec and Jakub Altrichter to take a 2-1 lead after 40 minutes.
Team Canada White would strike on the power play late in the third period when Matt Savoie (St. Albert, Alta./Rink Hockey Academy, CSSHL) had his shot hit a Czech leg and redirect past goaltender Tomas Suchanek to force overtime. Martin Rysavy sealed the bronze medal for the Czech Republic, tucking in a wraparound with 14.4 seconds to play in the extra frame.
“It’s been a great experience the past few weeks. At the start I didn’t know many of the players from out east and now they’re brothers to me, and I think that’s the biggest thing to take away from this team,” said Cole Sillinger (Regina, Sask./Medicine Hat, WHL). “This is the best tournament in the world for players our age, so I think we all can appreciate this experience and learn from it.”
William Rousseau (Trois-Rivières, Que./Trois-Rivières, LHMAAAQ) stopped 25 shots in the loss.
For more information on the 2019 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge, please visit HockeyCanada.ca, or follow along via social media on Twitter.