Canada’s National Men’s Under-18 Team opened its pre-tournament schedule with a 6-5 overtime win over Belarus, scoring twice in the final eight minutes to force the extra period.
Alex Newhook (St. John’s, N.L./Victoria, BCHL) scored a hat trick, including the overtime winner.
Michael Vukojevic (Oakville, Ont./Kitchener, OHL), Peyton Krebs (Okotoks, Alta./Winnipeg, WHL) and Keean Washkurak (Waterloo, Ont./Mississauga, OHL) had the other Canadian goals, while Dylan Cozens (Whitehorse, Y.T./Lethbridge, WHL) added three assists.
Canada outshot Belarus 29-25.
“The game provided us an opportunity to grow as a team. We faced adversity and situations that were uncomfortable, which will allow us to draw on that later in the tournament. The preliminary games allow for teachable moments and tonight will be a game we can go back on to remind our group that we will get every country’s best and we need to be ready.”
– Head coach Brett Gibson (Gananoque, Ont.) on what his team can learn from the win
“We found a way to win, and that was important. The game had its ups and downs and that was expected. We have a number of players who haven’t played a game in over three weeks. We also have players to add and some work to do to finalize our tournament roster. In the end I thought the game provided us with a lot of teachable moments that will make us better when the tournament starts. Give Belarus credit, they worked hard and it was a competitive game.”
– POE management group member Alan Millar (Tottenham, Ont.)