CALGARY, Alta. – Hockey Canada announced Friday the 18 players named to Canada’s National Men’s Under-18 Team for the 2016 IIHF U18 World Championship, April 14-24 in Grand Forks, N.D.
The roster includes two goalies, six defencemen and 10 forwards, as well as seven players (Bitten, Fabbro, Jost, Kyrou, Malenstyn, McLeod, and Quenneville) who won a gold medal with Canada’s National Men’s Summer Under-18 Team at the 2015 U18 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Cup in the Czech Republic and Slovakia last summer, and three players (Comtois, Phillips, and Tippett) who participated in the 2015 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge in Dawson Creek and Fort St. John, B.C., last November.
Three under-age players (Anderson-Dolan, DiPietro, and Rasmussen), who were invited to the pre-competition camp in Winnipeg, Man., and played in pre-tournament games to gain additional experience against international competition, remain with the team as Canada awaits the addition of players to complete its roster once Canadian Hockey League teams are eliminated from the playoffs.
The 1998- and 1999-born players were selected by Hockey Canada’s director of player personnel, Ryan Jankowski who built the roster with support from head coach Shaun Clouston (Viking, Alta./Medicine Hat, WHL), and assistant coaches Serge Lajoie (St. Albert, Alta./University of Alberta, CWUAA) and Jarrod Skalde (Niagara Falls, Ont./Guelph, OHL), along with national team alumnus Ryan Smyth, who is part of Hockey Canada’s Program of Excellence management group.
“Following our pre-competition camp and pre-tournament schedule, we feel we have built a team that is well-prepared as we move forward throughout the tournament and as we look to bring home a gold medal,” said Jankowski.
Canada opens the 2016 IIHF U18 World Championship tonight, April 15 against Denmark; it will also play the Czech Republic, Finland, and Slovakia in preliminary-round action. TSN and RDS, the official broadcast partners of Hockey Canada, will broadcast 12 games, including all Team Canada match-ups.
Canada has won seven medals at the IIHF U18 World Championship, including three gold medals (2003, 2008 and 2013).