Two Vees Alumni Crack USA Roster


December 27, 2012, PENTICTON, BC –Mario Lucia (Notre Dame / Wild ’12) and Mike Reilly (Minnesota / Blue Jackets ’12) were named to USA Hockey’s 23-man roster Tuesday for the 2013 IIHF World Junior Hockey Championship in Ufa, Russia. The two Vees alumni and USA open the tournament onThursday when the battle Germany.

Last season, the two played their first and only season in the BCHL, helping guide the Vees to their second National Championship and first in 26 years. Lucia and Reilly are the first two Vees alumni to play for the USA at the World Junior Hockey Championship.

Lucia finished second in team scoring, with 94 points in 56 games and finished tied for first in league scoring (42) with teammate Bryce Gervais. Those numbers resulted in Lucia being named BCHL Interior Conference Rookie of the Year. Lucia has had quite the start to his freshman season at Notre Dame, registering five goals and 10 points in nine games and is sixth in team scoring. Lucia was also the CCHA Rookie of the Week, twice in early December. The impressive start even that more exceptional, considering Lucia came back from a broken leg suffered in late August.

Reilly has had a solid start to his freshman season at the University of Minnesota. In 17 games with the Gophers, Reilly has two goals and 10 points, helping the Gophers to an 11-3-3 record and a top four ranking in Division l Men’s Hockey. Last season, the Chanhassen, Minnesota native led all BCHL defenseman in goals (24), assists (59) and points (83) and won the Interior Conference Defenseman of the Year award.

The 2013 IIHF World Junior Hockey Championship runs December 26th-January 5th in Ufa, Russia. Team USA is in Group B, joined by Canada, Russia, Germany and Slovakia. TSN will air every Team USA round-robin game live, including their clash with Canada on New Year’s Eve. Those living outside of the country can watch every Team USA game live on the NHL Network.

Christian J. Stewart
Christian is a professional photographer and media professional based in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. Currently working as the Assistant General Manager for Victoria HarbourCats Baseball Club, a Senior Contributing Editor and photographer at Independent Sports News (ISN) and operating his own freelance photography and media/pr company.