North American Juniors

2018 IIHF World Junior Championship: 1-5-18

2018 IIHF World Junior Championship

Bronze Medal Game
Czech Republic 3 vs USA 9

D Libor Hajek, CZE: 0-1-1, -5, 0 PIM, 3 SOG, *CZE Player of the Game*
Tournament Totals: 7 GP, 1-7-8, E, 6 PIM, 14 SOG

Hajek notched an assist on the Czech Republic’s first goal of the game, a power play marker by Martin Kaut just 43 seconds into the 3rd period. Unfortunately, by the time the Czech’s scored, the USA already had a 7-0 lead. Despite a -5 rating for the game, Hajek was named the Player of the Game for the Czech team, his second such honor of the tournament along with being named one of the Czech team’s Three Players of the Tournament. Hajek, along with Canada’s Cale Makar (COL, 2017 1st round pick) led all defensemen in the tourney in points, and he led the Czech team in ice time, after being left off last year’s WJC squad for CZE.

Wisconsin Badger Trent Fredric (BOS, 2016 1st round pick) paced the USA team on their way to Bronze with four goals, including the trifecta of shorthanded, power play, and even strength goals. Once again, the Czechs played a tight 1st period, but allowed critical let downs to balloon. The Czechs allowed the shortie from Fredric with 4 seconds remaining in the 1st to go into intermission down 1-0, and then allowed a Ryan Poehling (MTL, 2017 1st round pick) tally just 9 seconds into the 2nd period followed by a Joey Anderson goal 4 minutes later. After a goalie change, the Czech team allowed Fredric’s 2nd goal of the game 90 seconds later, and then Hajek got called for a penalty shot on a hooking call, with Kieffer Bellows (NYI, 2016 1st round pick) converting for his first of two goals in the game. Two more goals by Fredric and Bellows before the end of the period and the USA caps off a 6-goal middle frame. The Czechs got 3 goals in the 3rd by Kaut, Radovan Pavlik (undrafted), and Daniel Kurovsky (undrafted), but by then the game was well out of reach.

Gold Medal Game
Sweden 1 @ Canada 3

F Taylor Raddysh , CAN: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Tournament Totals: 7 GP, 2-3-5, +5, 4 PIM, 16 SOG

F Boris Katchouk, CAN: 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Tournament Totals: 7 GP, 3-3-6, +5, 4 PIM, 12 SOG

F Brett Howden , CAN: 0-0-0, +1, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Tournament Totals: 7 GP, 3-4-7, +9, 4 PIM, 15 SOG

D Cal Foote, CAN: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Tournament Totals: 7 GP, 0-3-3, +5, 0 PIM, 2 SOG

Carter Hart (PHI, 2016 2nd round pick) made 35 saves, backstopping Canada to Gold in a 3-1 win over the Sweden. Canada got goals from Dillion Dube (CGY, 2016 2nd round pick) and Tyler Steenbergen (ARI, 2017 5th round pick), with Alex Formenton (OTT, 2017 2nd round pick) adding an empty netter at the end. The game was evenly matched with the difference being the heads-up sharp laser pass by Conor Timmins (COL, 2017 2nd round pick) to Steenbergen in the slot for his first and only goal in the tournament. Sweden’s lone goal came shorthanded in the 2nd to knot the game at 1-1 by Tim Soderlund (CHI, 2017 4th round pick).

Juniors Game Night: 1-5-18

Western Hockey League

** Note: Brett Howden (Moose Jaw), Cal Foote (Kelowna), and Libor Hajek (Saskatoon) are away from their respective WHL teams for the 2018 WJC tournament.

Moose Jaw Warriors 5 @ Calgary Hitmen 3

D Oleg Sosunov, MJ: 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 40 GP, 7-10-17, +29, 42 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (MHL-Russia): 32 GP, 0-0-0, +1, 79 PIM

The Warriors had the game in hand by the 2nd intermission, up 4-0 on the Hitmen, but took their foot off the gas a little and Calgary made it interested with three 3rd period goals of their own. Tanner Jeannot (undrafted) lead the way for Moose Jaw with two goals and an assist, while Riley Stotts (2018 draft eligible) and Layne Toder (undrafted) led the rally for Calgary.

United States Hockey League

** Note: Cole Guttman (Dubuque) was placed on injured reserved on December 22nd following the completion of the World Junior A Challenge tournament.

Waterloo Black Hawks 2 @ Omaha Lancers 3 (0T1)

D Nick Perbix , OMA: 0-1-1, -1, 0 PIM, 3 SOG
Season Totals: 21 GP, 0-11-11, +11, 10 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (HS): 25 GP, 10-30-40, 6 PIM
Committed to: St. Cloud State University

Perbix got the primary assist on the OT game-winner by Czech pivot Filip Suchy (undrafted), who scored all three of the Lancers’ goals. Omaha got a pair of assists from wingers Noah Cates (PHI, 2017 5th round pick) and Cole Gallant (Western Michigan commit). Harvard bound Jack Drury (2018 draft eligible) scored both of Waterloo’s goals with Jackson Cates (Minnesota-Duluth commit) earning assists on both Black Hawks scores.

2018 IIHF World Junior Championship: 1-4-18

2018 IIHF World Junior Championship

Canada 7 vs Czech Republic 2

F Taylor Raddysh , CAN: 0-0-0, +1, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Tournament Totals: 6 GP, 2-3-5, +5, 4 PIM, 14 SOG

F Boris Katchouk, CAN: 1-0-1, +1, 2 PIM, 1 SOG
Tournament Totals: 6 GP, 3-3-6, +5, 4 PIM, 10 SOG

F Brett Howden , CAN: 0-1-1, +1, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Tournament Totals: 5 GP, 3-4-7, +8, 4 PIM, 13 SOG

D Cal Foote, CAN: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Tournament Totals: 6 GP, 0-3-3, +5, 0 PIM, 1 SOG

D Libor Hajek, CZE: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Tournament Totals: 6 GP, 1-6-7, +5, 6 PIM, 11 SOG

Katchouk scored and Raddysh and Howden added assists in the Canadians 7-2 rout of the Czech Republic. The win puts Canada into the Gold Medal game against Sweden Friday night. Meanwhile, Hajek consummated his coming out party after being named as one of the Czech’s Three Players of the Tournament. The Czechs will play USA for the Bronze Medal, also on Friday night. Filip Zadina (2018 draft eligible) scored both goals for the Czechs, including the game opener just 5:55 into the game, but was snubbed by the Czech coaches as one of the team’s three best after leading the tournament in goals scored. The Canadians were let by the hat trick of Drake Batherson (OTT, 2017 4th round pick). After scoring the opening goal, discipline plagued the Czechs once again, taking a slew of penalties and allowing three straight power play goals and then the 3-1 deficit blossomed into a 7-1 deep trench.

Juniors Game Night: 1-4-18

Ontario Hockey League

** Note: Boris Katchouk (Sault Ste. Marie) and Taylor Raddysh (Erie) are away from their respective OHL teams for the 2018 WJC tournament.

London Knights 5 @ Barrie Colts 3

W Alexey Lipanov, BAR: 0-1-1, -1, 0 PIM, 1 SOG, 8/16 FO
Season Totals: 34 GP, 11-18-29, +9, 10 PIM
‘16-‘17 Totals (VHL-Russia): 21 GP, 3-5-8, +5, 8 PIM

Lipanov returned to action for the Colts after missing a couple of games, along with Andrei Svechnikov (2018 draft eligible) back from the WJCs with the Russian team. Svechnikov scored the 2-2 equalizer in the 2nd and fired a game-high 6 shots at Windsor goalie Jordan Kooy (2018 draft eligible), who stopped 40 for the win. Lipanov notched an assist on a power player marker by TJ Fergus (undrafted) late in the 3rd to draw within one at 4-3, but it was just false hope for Barrie, who now have lost two straight after a six-game win streak.

Windsor Spitfires 2 @ Peterborough Petes 1

W/C Christopher Paquette, PBO: 0-0-0, -1, 2 PIM, 0 SOG, 3/4 FO
Season Totals: 34 GP, 10-4-14, -22, 8 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (NIA/PBO): 66 GP, 19-29-48, +1, 28 PIM

Michael DiPietro (VAN, 2017 3rd round pick) turned aside 35 Peterborough shots, and Windsor managed to slide one more past Petes netminder Dylan Wells (EDM, 2016 5th round pick) for the 2-1 Spitfires victory. The Petes are 1-7-2 in their last 10 games.

Minnesota State High School League

White Bear Lake Bears 3 @ Edina Hornets 3

F Sammy Walker, EDN: 2-1-3, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Season Totals (HS): 12 GP, 14-17-31, 10 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (HS): 25 GP, 22-24-46, 6 PIM
Committed to: University of Minnesota

Walker scored two of Edina’s three 2nd period goals, and he assisted on the third, as the Hornets took a 3-1 lead over the White Bears by the game’s midpoint. But White Bear Lake battled back with scores of their own in the 2nd and 3rd, drawing a tie with Edina. One of Walker’s goals was on the power play. The Hornets square off Saturday night against the Academy of Holy Angels Stars.

Juniors Game Night: 1-3-18

Ontario Hockey League

** Note: Boris Katchouk (Sault Ste. Marie) and Taylor Raddysh (Erie) are away from their respective OHL teams for the 2018 WJC tournament.

Peterborough Petes 2 @ Hamilton Bulldogs 7

W/C Christopher Paquette, PBO: 0-0-0, -3, 0 PIM, 1 SOG, 3/4 FO
Season Totals: 33 GP, 10-4-14, -21, 6 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (NIA/PBO): 66 GP, 19-29-48, +1, 28 PIM

The Petes were no match for the division-leading and second-best team in the OHL. Hamilton got two goals each from Isaac Nurse (undrafted) and Matthew Strome (PHI, 2017 4th round pick), as part of a four-goal 3rd period that broke a tenuous 3-2 lead wide open. The Bulldogs jumped out to a 3-1 lead at the first intermission, and after a scoreless middle frame, Peterborough pivot Zach Gallant (DET, 2017 3rd round pick) scored a power play marker 38 seconds into the 3rd to draw the Petes within one. Paquette, at the midpoint of last season’s total games played, is on pace to equal his goals total, but is considerably off last season’s assist pace, and his -21 rating is tough to swallow even considering the overall defensive woes of the Petes.

Western Hockey League

** Note: Brett Howden (Moose Jaw), Cal Foote (Kelowna), and Libor Hajek (Saskatoon) are away from their respective WHL teams for the 2018 WJC tournament.

Moose Jaw Warriors 6 @ Red Deer Rebels 3

D Oleg Sosunov, MJ: 0-0-0, +1, 4 PIM, 5 SOG
Season Totals: 39 GP, 7-10-17, +30, 42 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (MHL-Russia): 32 GP, 0-0-0, +1, 79 PIM

Night before last, I referred to the Warriors offense as high octane and en fuego after firing 44 shots and scoring 6 goals against the Wheat Kings. Tonight, Moose Jaw machine-gunned Red Deer goalie Riley Lamb (undrafted) with 69 shots, including 33 in the 2nd period. Somewhere in here is a joke about deer in headlights, but that deer happens to have a First Star despite allowing 6 goals. The Warriors were led by Brayden Burke (undrafted) with two goals and an assist and Justin Almeida (undrafted) with three assists.

Minnesota State High School League

Burnsville Blaze 1 @ Edina Hornets 6 (Tuesday)

F Sammy Walker, EDN: 0-1-1, 2 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals (HS): 11 GP, 12-16-28, 10 PIM
Season Totals (USHL): 4 GP, 0-0-0, -3, 4 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (HS): 25 GP, 22-24-46, 6 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (USHL): 4 GP, 0-0-0, -3, 6 PIM
Committed to: University of Minnesota

It was a quiet night for Walker, notching just a single assist as the Hornets easily handled the Blaze. Demetrios Koumontzis (Arizona State commit) scored 4 goals and 5 points to pace Edina over visiting Burnsville. Edina’s record on the season improves to 11-1-0, with their lone loss coming to Minnetonka in the opening game of the Schwan Gold Cup tournament on Boxing Day. The Hornets next play Thursday night against the White Bears from White Bear Lake high school.

Juniors Game Night: 1-2-18

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Halifax Mooseheads 4 @ Moncton Wildcats 3 (OT)

C/W Otto Somppi, HAL: 0-2-2, E, 0 PIM, 0 SOG, 13/23 FO
Season Totals: 31 GP, 12-30-42, +26, 14 PIM
’16-’17 Totals: 60 GP, 17-24-41, -7, 28 PIM

Somppi (pictured) notched a pair of assists in the Mooseheads OT road win over the Wildcats, giving him 1-5-6 in 4 games since returning from the holiday break. Somppi and Jared McIsaac (2018 draft eligible) assisted on Raphael Lavoie’s (2019 draft eligible) opening goal just 33 seconds into game. Moncton struck back with two 1st period goals by Jeremy McKenna (undrafted). Sompii tallied his second point midway through the 2nd period on a power play marker from Benoit-Olivier Groulx (2018 draft eligible) to knot the game at 2-2. After the teams traded 3rd period goals, Jocktan Chainey won the game for Haifax with the OT game winner 1:10 into the extra session. With the win, the Mooseheads move ahead of Blainville-Boisbriand with the most points in the Q, and extend their division lead over Acadie-Bathurst in the Maritimes.

Ontario Hockey League

** Note: Boris Katchouk (Sault Ste. Marie) and Taylor Raddysh (Erie) are away from their respective OHL teams for the 2018 WJC tournament.

Barrie Colts 0 @ Kitchener Rangers 3

W Alexey Lipanov, BAR: Did not play
Season Totals: 32 GP, 11-17-28, +10, 10 PIM
‘16-‘17 Totals (VHL-Russia): 21 GP, 3-5-8, +5, 8 PIM

Despite slinging 43 shots at Rangers goalie Luke Richardson (undrafted), the Colts went scoreless as their six-game winning streak was snapped. Lipanov missed his second consecutive game.

2018 IIHF World Junior Championship: 1-2-18

2018 IIHF World Junior Championship

Czech Republic 4 vs Finland 3 (SO)

D Libor Hajek, CZE: 0-1-1, +1, 2 PIM, 3 SOG
Tournament Totals: 5 GP, 1-6-7, +5, 6 PIM, 11 SOG

Hajek played 30:46, four minutes more than any other player in the game, and notched a power play assist in the Czech Republic’s come-from-behind shootout victory over the Finnish squad 4-3. The Czechs will play in the tourney’s semifinals on Thursday against Canada, who dominated the Swiss in quarterfinal play.

Josef Korenar (undrafted), the Czech netminder and former Lincoln Stars goalie, stopped 51 of 54 Finnish shots, backstopping the Czechs in their upset of Finland and their first appearance in the WJC semifinals since 2005. Hajek, playing on the top Czech power play unit, worked with Martin Necas (CAR, 2017 1st round pick) to feed Filip Zadina (2018 draft eligible) for the first of his two goals in the game. The Finns went ahead 2-1 in the 2nd with goals from Aapeli Rasanen (EDM, 2016 6th round pick) and Vancouver 2016 5th overall pick Olli Juolevi, the first on the power play with Hajek in the box for interference. Red Deer Rebel Kristian Reichel (undrafted), son of ex-NHL’er Robert Reichel, knotted the game 2-2 before the end of the 2nd period, but Kristian Vesalainen (WPG, 2017 1st round pick) put the Finns up 3-2 early in the 3rd period. With Korenar pulled for the extra skater, Halifax linemate of Otto Somppi and consensus Top 10 2018 pick Filip Zadina tied the game 3-3 with two-and-a-half minutes left in the game to send the game to OT and to the eventual shootout. Kolenar would stand strong for the Czechs in the skill competition, stopping 4 of 5 shots from Finland, while Reichel and Necar scored for the Czech Republic to seal the upset and a berth in the tournament semifinals.

Canada 8 vs Switzerland 2

F Taylor Raddysh , CAN: 0-1-1, E, 2 PIM, 3 SOG
Tournament Totals: 5 GP, 2-3-5, +4, 4 PIM, 13 SOG

F Boris Katchouk, CAN: 0-1-1, +1, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Tournament Totals: 5 GP, 2-3-5, +4, 2 PIM, 9 SOG

F Brett Howden , CAN: 1-3-4, +4, 0 PIM, 3 SOG
Tournament Totals: 5 GP, 3-3-6, +7, 4 PIM, 12 SOG

D Cal Foote, CAN: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Tournament Totals: 5 GP, 0-3-3, +5, 0 PIM, 1 SOG

Brett Howden (pictured) scored the opening goal and added three more assists as Canada put up its second snowman on the scoreboard in consecutive games in an 8-2 victory over Switzerland to advance to the semifinals against the Czech Republic on Thursday. The Canadians pelted the Swiss with 60 shots, while the defense allowed just 15 shots against. Canada was paced by two goals from Drake Batherson (OTT, 2017 4th round pick), four points from Howden, and a goal and three points from Maxime Comtois (ANA, 2017 2nd round pick). Both Katchouk and Raddysh netted power play assists, with Katchouk collecting an assist on Batherson’s power play marker in the 1st period, and Raddysh earning his helper on Dillon Dube’s (CGY, 2016 2nd round pick) power play goal midway through the 3rd period.

Juniors Game Night: 1-1-18

Ontario Hockey League

** Note: Boris Katchouk (Sault Ste. Marie) and Taylor Raddysh (Erie) are away from their respective OHL teams for the 2018 WJC tournament.

Kitchener Rangers 5 @ Peterborough Petes 4 (OT)

W/C Christopher Paquette, PBO: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 2 SOG, 2/2 FO
Season Totals: 32 GP, 10-4-14, -18, 6 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (NIA/PBO): 66 GP, 19-29-48, +1, 28 PIM

The Petes battled back from 2-1 and 3-2 deficits to take a 4-3 lead early in the 3rd period, but Adam Mascherin (FLA, 2016 2nd round pick) would get the hat trick goal at 12:09 of the 3rd after scoring twice for the Rangers in the 2nd. Then Mascherin would score his 4th goal of game, his 28th of the season, at 2:37 into the extra session for the OT game-winner for Kitchener. Mascherin’s four goal outburst pulls him ahead of Boris Katchouk for 2nd on the OHL goals leaderboard behind 2017 Memorial Cup winning Windsor captain and now Barrie Colt pivot Aaron Luchuk, who signed an entry-level deal with Ottawa as a free agent on December 27th.

Juniors Game Night: 12-31-17

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Halifax Mooseheads 4 @ Cape Breton Screaming Eagles 1

C/W Otto Somppi, HAL: 0-2-2, +2, 0 PIM, 2 SOG, 18/27 FO, *Third Star*
Season Totals: 30 GP, 12-28-40, +26, 14 PIM
’16-’17 Totals: 60 GP, 17-24-41, -7, 28 PIM

The Mooseheads got goals from four players and Somppi (pictured) notched a pair of assists on 2nd period goals from Jake Ryczek (CHI, 2016 7th round pick) and Patrick Kyte (undrafted). Somppi, who earned Third Star honors, has already eclipsed his assist totals from last season and is one point off his career points in just half the games. He's on pace for an 80-point campaign, and his +26 rating leads all players in the Q, and his 28 assists ties him for 2nd in league. And while he does benefit from linemate Filip Zadina (2018 draft eligible), he is 1-3-4 in 3 games with Zadina off with the Czech Republic team at the 2018 WJCs.

Ontario Hockey League

** Note: Boris Katchouk (Sault Ste. Marie) and Taylor Raddysh (Erie) are away from their respective teams for the 2018 WJC tournament.

Owen Sound Attack 1 @ Barrie Colts 4

W Alexey Lipanov, BAR: Did not play
Season Totals: 32 GP, 11-17-28, +10, 10 PIM
‘16-‘17 Totals (VHL-Russia): 21 GP, 3-5-8, +5, 8 PIM

Colts netminder Leo Lazarev turned away 47 Owen Sound shots, backstopping Barrie to its 6th straight win. Lipanov wasn’t in the lineup for the Colts, and not sure if he was a healthy scratch or if he was injured in Owen Sound last night. Barrie’s offense was paced by Aidan Brown (undrafted), who notched two goals, while Nick Suzuki (VGK, 2017 1st round pick) was the lone goal scorer to solve Lazarev.

Western Hockey League

** Note: Brett Howden (Moose Jaw), Cal Foote (Kelowna), and Libor Hajek (Saskatoon) are away from their respective teams for the 2018 WJC tournament.

Brandon Wheat Kings 2 @ Moose Jaw Warriors 6

D Oleg Sosunov, MJ: 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Season Totals: 38 GP, 7-10-17, +29, 38 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (MHL-Russia): 32 GP, 0-0-0, +1, 79 PIM

The high-octane Warriors offense continues en fuego coming back from the holiday, as Moose Jaw fires 44 shots and scores 6 goals on the backside of the home-and-home with the Wheat Kings. The WHL goal, assist and point leaders Jayden Halbgewachs (undrafted) and Brayden Burke (undrafted) were at it again, with Halbgewachs turning out a two-goal, five-point night, and Burke with a goal and three-points. Tristin Langen (undrafted) also netted two goals for the Warriors.

United States Hockey League

** Note: Cole Guttman (Dubuque) was placed on injured reserved on December 22nd following the completion of the World Junior A Challenge tournament.

Omaha Lancers 1 @ Sioux City Muskateers 2 (0T1)

D Nick Perbix , OMA: 0-1-1, +1, 0 PIM, 4 SOG
Season Totals: 20 GP, 0-10-10, +12, 10 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (HS): 25 GP, 10-30-40, 6 PIM
Committed to: St. Cloud State University

Perbix assisted on a 1st period Lancers goal by Mathieu De St. Phalle (Wiconsin commit) goal, but the Musketeers would knot that game in the 3rd and then win it 1:35 into the extra frame..

2018 IIHF World Junior Championship: 12-31-17

2018 IIHF World Junior Championship

Switzerland 3 @ Czech Republic 6

D Libor Hajek, CZE: 0-2-2, +1, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Tournament Totals: 4 GP, 1-4-5, +4, 4 PIM, 8 SOG

Hajek had a pair of assists, one on the power play, in the Czech Republic’s domination of the Swiss, scoring 6 and putting up 60 shots. Red Deer Rebel Kristian Reichel (undrafted), son of ex-NHL’er Robert Reichel, scored twice for the Czechs. Hajek fed Jakub Lauko (2018 draft eligible) for the opening goal just 2:38 into the match, and then followed it up by working with Martin Kaut (2018 draft eligible) on a power play marker by Martin Necas (CAR, 2017 1st round pick) to put the Czechs up 2-1. After the Swiss knotted the score at 3-3 with a power play goal of their own, the Czechs locked the nets and reeled off three straight goals from Kaut, Daniel Kurovsky (undrafted), and Reichel.

The Czech Republic awaits the results of the final preliminary game of Russia vs. Sweden to see who they draw in the quarterfinals on January 2nd. The Russians can finish 2nd in Group B with a regulation win over the Swedes. Otherwise, the Czechs will finish 2nd in Group B.

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