U SPORTS is proud to announce that two of its men’s hockey programs will represent the membership at Canada’s National Junior Team Sport Chek Selection Camp.

The Alberta Golden Bears and Mount Royal Cougars will each face Team Canada’s prospects in a two-game series over the next pair of weekends on Nov. 28-29 and Dec. 5-6. An opponent for a third weekend series from Dec. 12-13 will be announced at a later date. All games will be held at the Westerner Park Centrium, home of the Red Deer Rebels of the Western Hockey League (WHL), and televised live on TSN and RDS. A full schedule is available below.

To ensure the health and safety of all participants and the community at large, Hockey Canada will be closely following enhanced measures around testing and team protocols for all participants. The camp will take place in a cohort bubble and will be closed to the public and media. Following selection camp, Team Canada will declare its final roster and enter the bubble in Edmonton in preparation for the 2021 IIHF World Junior Championship being held from Dec. 25, 2020 – Jan. 5, 2021 at Rogers Place.

“With student-athlete health and safety our top priority, it was important to collaborate with our members to provide an alternative high-performance opposition for this year’s Selection Camp in our partnership with Hockey Canada. We are excited to have Alberta and Mount Royal play meaningful games and represent the 36 U SPORTS men’s hockey programs across the country, while helping prepare Team Canada to defend its gold medal on home ice.”

Lisette Johnson-Stapley – Chief Sport Officer, U SPORTS

This will mark Team Canada’s first Selection Camp opposition that does not feature a U SPORTS national All-Star Team since 2014, and its first Canada West (CW) opponents dating back to 2012.  Since their inaugural participation in December 2015, the U SPORTS All-Stars sport a 6-4-1 record against Team Canada, with 14 members of the Golden Bears and Cougars programs – players, coaches and support staff – having taken part, including seven from last year’s roster.

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Grayson Pawlenchuk (left) in action at last year’s Selection Camp.

Alberta’s Grayson Pawlenchuk (35 points) and Mount Royal’s Ryley Lindgren (31) were two of the top three scorers in CW last season, each taking home conference First Team All-Star honours, and earning spots on the U SPORTS All-Star roster. The duo also tied for the CW lead in goals with 18, ranking top 10 nationally. Pawlenchuk capped his season with a U SPORTS First Team All-Canadian nod.

“Looking back on last year, it was different watching them win the World Junior Championship, knowing I had played against them and was able to help with their Selection Camp,” said Pawlenchuk, a third-year business student from Sherwood Park, Alta., who played his entire WHL career with the Rebels. “We have a lot of great players on the Bears and across the country that will be able to continue their careers after playing U SPORTS hockey, and having these games nationally-televised will be a huge opportunity without a regular season or national championship.”

The Golden Bears – who have won the most David Johnston University Cup national titles with 16 – went 23-5-0 in the 2019-20 campaign, en route to a first-place finish, while the Cougars went 18-8-2, coming in fourth.

“To play against the top junior players in Canada is something our whole team is excited about. It’ll be one of those experiences that we’ll never forget and we’re just thankful for the opportunity,” said Cougars captain Tyson Helgesen, also a third-year business student, who will take the ice in his native Red Deer. “It gives the whole team something to look forward to. We want to represent MRU and U SPORTS men’s hockey proudly and the guys have been doing their part by ramping up their level of intensity”

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Tyson Helgesen

Hockey Canada’s National Junior Team has faced various U SPORTS competition on a regular basis since 1988. For full historical results click here.

2020 NATIONAL JUNIOR TEAM SPORT CHEK SELECTION CAMP SCHEDULE

Date opponent time (et) Time (pt) Broadcast
Sat. Nov. 28 Alberta 8 p.m. 5 p.m. TSN

TSN Direct

Sun. Nov. 29
Sat. Dec. 5 Mount Royal 8 p.m. 5 p.m.
Sun. Dec. 6
Sat. Dec. 12 TBD 4:30 p.m. 1:30 p.m.
Sun. Dec. 13

Full camp results and statistics will be available on HockeyCanada.ca.