November 4, 2012, Calgary, AB – Team BC struck Gold at the 2012 Western Canada U-16 Challenge Cup with a convincing 9-3 victory over Team Alberta in the championship game on Sunday afternoon at Father David Bauer arena in Calgary, AB.
Jansen Harkins racked up four goals, including a hat trick in the first period, and an assist for a five-point effort to pace BC to the victory over the two-time defending champion Alberta side. Harkins, a first-round pick of the Prince George Cougars in the 2012 WHL Bantam Draft, earned Player of the Game honors for his five-point outing.
“Our whole team played well through the whole tournament, and I finally got my share of putting it in today,” said Harkins, a product of North Vancouver who plays for the Vancouver NW Giants of the BC Major Midget League. “I’m happy to have been able to do this for my team.”
Matthew Barzal, the first overall pick from the 2012 WHL Bantam Draft, scored once and set up three more and Prince George Cougars prospect Brad Morrison scored two goals and three points while Swift Current Broncos prospect scored once and chipped in two assists for Team BC.
“We knew it was going to be a tough game today, and we knew if we didn’t play the 60 minutes, they’d be getting that Gold medal,” said Barzal, who finished the tournament with three goals and eight points in four games.
Brad Forrest – with a goal and an assist – Braylon Shmyr and Jordan Xavier scored for Team Alberta, who couldn’t find a way to slow down BC’s collection of offensive stars.
“It took four games to get here, but everyone bought in and everybody took on their role,” said BC head coach Ryan Weber. “There is a lot of high-end talent in our room, but if everybody doesn’t work hard and buy in, we don’t get the result we had today.”
Taz Burman turned in a 33-save effort in goal for Team BC, who led 5-3 after an exciting opening period then added three more in the second period and one more in the third to capture the Gold medal.
Patrick Dea stopped eight of 12 shots he faced in the Alberta net before giving way to Zach Sawchenko at the 14:30 mark of the first period. Sawchenko, who was named to the tournament All-Star team, made 24 saves on 29 shots the rest of the way.
BRITISH COLUMBIA 9, ALBERTA 3
1 – BC – Harkins, 2:17
2 – AB – Shmyr (Gennaro, Forrest) PP, 3:42
3 – BC – Harkins (Morrison, Stukel), 6:52
4 – AB – Xavier (Merkley, Pawlenchuk), 7:34
5 – BC – Morrison (Gawdin, Barzal) PP, 9:46
6 – BC – Stukel (Harkins, Davis), 14:30
7 – BC – Harkins SH, 16:22
8 – AB – Forrest, 18:44
9 – BC – Gawdin (Barzal, Reddekopp), 0:19
10 – BC – Harkins (Soy), 3:06
11 – BC – Barzal (Gawdin, Reddekopp), 8:57
12 – BC – Morrison (Barzal, Wotherspoon), 4:16
BC: 17, 15, 10 = 42
AB: 9, 9, 18 = 36
Burman (BC) – 33/36
Dea (AB) – 8/12
Sawchenko (AB) – 25/30
Players of the Game:
BC – Harkins
AB – Pawlenchuk
Team Saskatchewan claimed the Bronze medal at the 2012 Western Canada U-16 Challenge Cup after defeating Team Manitoba 2-1 in the third-place contest on Sunday morning at Father David Bauer arena in Calgary, AB. Defenceman Shane Collins broke a 0-0 stalemate with just over five minutes to play in the third period while Reagan Nagy scored into an empty net with less than two minutes remaining. Meyer Nell got Manitoba on the board just 16 seconds after Nagy’s goal, but that’s as close as Manitoba would get as they finish fourth in the tournament. Netminder Logan Flodell turned in a solid 29-save performance to post the victory while Mario Petit stopped 35 of 36 shots he faced in a valiant effort for Manitoba.
SASKATCHEWAN 2, MANITOBA 1
1 – SK – Collins (Hobbs), 14:50
2 – SK – Nagy, 18:42 EN
3 – MB – Nell (Purtill), 18:58
SK: 13, 11, 13 = 37
MB: 6, 9, 15 = 30
Flodell (SK) – 29/30
Petit (MB) – 35/36
Players of the Game:
SK – Flodell
MB – Petit