Team Red 2 - Team White 3
WHITE TAKES INTERSQUAD OPENER
Stefan Legein (Oakville, ON/Niagara, OHL) scored twice, including the game-winner eight minutes into the third period, and added an assist as Team White picked up a 3-2 victory over Team Red in the first intersquad game at the 2008 National Junior Team selection camp on Tuesday night at Father David Bauer Arena in Calgary.
Legein took a cross-ice pass from Riley Holzapfel (Regina, SK/Moose Jaw, WHL) and tapped the puck into the open net behind Team Red goaltender Tyson Sexsmith (Priddis, AB/Vancouver, WHL) to provide the winning margin.
Team Red got the early jump on their pale-coloured opposition and it was highly-touted 17-year-old Steven Stamkos (Unionville, ON/Sarnia, OHL) who opened the scoring, finishing off a 2-on-1 with Matt Halischuk (Mississauga, ON/Kitchener, OHL) by beating Team White goaltender Jonathan Bernier (Laval, QC/Lewiston, QMJHL) for the 1-0 lead.
But that lead would last just two minutes, as Zack Hamill (Port Coquitlam, BC/Everett, WHL) took a pass in front from Legein and, after having his original shot turned away, banged his own rebound past Steve Mason (Oakville, ON/London, OHL) to pull Team White even.
Despite Team White holding a 9-4 advantage in shots on goal, the game entered the first intermission knotted up at 1-1.
Both Mason and Bernier were solid in their final 10 minutes of work in the second period, with Mason turning aside all three shots he faced and Bernier stopping all eight that came his way, before giving way to Sexsmith and Leland Irving (Swan Hills, AB/Everett, WHL), respectively.
Hard work along the boards from John Tavares (Oakville, ON/Oshawa, OHL) created the second Team White goal, as the 17-year-old OHL scoring leader forced a turnover, leading to Legein’s first goal of the game, a slap shot from the face-off circle that snuck through Sexsmith just two minutes after the goaltending change.
Just as Team White responded quickly after the Team Red goal in the first period, Team Red who shot back just 3:24 after the Legein goal to pull even.
Zac Boychuk (Airdrie, AB/Lethbridge, WHL) took a pass from Stamkos to the left of Irving and fired a wrist shot that eluded the glove hand of the Team White goaltender, sending the game to the third period tied 2-2 and setting up Legein’s heroics.
The two teams finished even in shots at 23 apiece, but it was Team White that led in the most important category.
The second intersquad game goes Wednesday night at 6:45 p.m. MT at Father David Bauer Arena. From the selection camp, 22 players will be selected to represent Canada at the 2008 IIHF World Junior Championship in the Czech Republic.