VANCOUVER, BC – Canada’s National Junior Team successfully defended their gold medal at the 2006 IIHF World Junior Championship after a 5-1 win over Russia on Thursday evening. With the gold medal, Canada has tied the Soviet Union winning a medal for the eighth consecutive year (1999-2006). The Soviet Union accomplished the feat from 1974-1981.
Canada has won back-to-back gold medals for the first time since their string of 5 consecutive gold medals from 1993-1997. In total, Canada has captured 12 gold medals, second behind only Russia, formerly the Soviet Union, who have won 14 World Junior Championships.
Michael Blunden registered two goals, while Steve Downie, Blake Comeau and Kyle Chipchura added singles. Justin Pogge made 35 saves for a Team Canada record third shutout of the event.
Canada’s all-time results record on home soil at the World Junior Championship now stands at 3 gold, 4 silver and 1 bronze medal. Canada had not won the gold medal in Canada since 1995, when the tournament was held in Red Deer, Alberta, winning silver twice in Hamilton (2003) and Winnipeg (1999).
All players and staff on Canada’s National Junior Team will be departing Vancouver on Friday, January 6.