CAMROSE, AB – The United States has won the gold medal at the 2008 World Junior A Challenge, ending the two-year reign of Canada West.
Seven different players scored goals and 11 had at least one point as the Americans knocked off Canada West 7-1 in Sunday’s gold medal game in front of a capacity crowd at the Edgeworth Centre. Up 2-1 midway through the first period, the U.S. rattled off five unanswered goals to claim victory.
Lee Moffie, David Gerths, Mike Cichy, Max Nicastro, Josh Birkholz, John Balch and Danny Kristo all scored goals for the United States, who improved on its bronze medal won last year in Trail, BC. The Americans scored three goals in the first period and four more in the second en route to the win.
Rylan Schwartz (Wilcox, SK/Notre Dame, SJHL) scored the lone goal for Canada West, who was the gold medalist in Trail, as well as in 2006 in Yorkton, SK.
Earlier Sunday, Canada East claimed the bronze medal with a 9-1 victory over Belarus. Reilly Smith (Mimico, ON/St. Michael’s, OJHL) recorded a hat trick and added an assist for the Canadians, while Pierre-Luc Lacombe (Gatineau, QC/Granby, LHJAAAQ) pitched in with two goals and two helpers.
Following Sunday’s gold medal game, the Under Armour® Undeniable MVP award and tournament all-star team were announced:
Under Armour® Undeniable MVP: Mike Cichy (United States)
Tournament All-Star Team:
Goaltender: Mike Lee (United States)
Defence: Matt Donovan (United States)
Defence: Andrew MacWilliam (Canada West)
Forward: Mike Cichy (United States)
Forward: Jaden Schwartz (Canada West)
Forward: Craig Smith (United States)