PORT ALBERNI, BC – And then there were two.
Ontario and Pacific will meet for the gold medal at the 2009 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge on Sunday night after both posted semifinal wins on Saturday at the Alberni Valley Multiplex. The gold medal game can be seen LIVE on TSN/RDS, the official broadcasters of Hockey Canada, at 8 p.m. EST/5 p.m. PST.
Ontario won its 14th straight game at the U17 tournament and kept alive its hope of back-to-back gold medals with a 7-4 win over West in the early semifinal. Tyler Toffoli and Erik Gudbranson each scored twice and added an assist to pace Ontario’s offensive attack. John McFarland added two goals, while Christian Thomas also scored. Tyler Seguin had four assists in the win.
Alex Petrovic was the hero for Pacific, scoring 5:35 into overtime to earn his team a 6-5 win over the United States. Max Reinhart tied the game with 1:17 remaining in the third period after the Americans had scored five times in a span of 10:26 in the second period to turn a 3-0 deficit into a 5-3 lead. Petrovic finished with a pair of goals, while Ryan Harrison, Brendan Ranford and Brett Connolly also scored in the win.
Ontario is looking for its seventh U17 gold medal, having won titles in 1992, 1995, 1997, 1998, 20. Pacific has never won U17 gold, losing in the gold medal game in four straight tournaments (2001, 2002, 2004, 2005). The two teams have met for gold once before, in 2004 in St. John’s, NL, a game won 5-2 by Ontario.
In Sunday’s bronze medal game at the Alberni Valley Multiplex (3 p.m. EST/12 p.m. PST), West will face the United States. West has won bronze once at the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge, last year in London, ON, while the U.S. is looking for its first-ever bronze medal.
In other Saturday results from Vancouver Island:
5th Place – Quebec 3, Germany 1 (in Port Alberni)
7th Place – Russia 6, Slovakia 3 (in Nanaimo)
9th Place – Atlantic 9, Finland 6 (in Nanaimo)
In addition, Hockey Canada announced on Saturday the all-star team for the 2009 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge. Choices for the all-star team were based on round-robin play.
2009 WORLD UNDER-17 HOCKEY CHALLENGE ALL-STAR TEAM
Goal – JP Anderson (Ontario)
Defence – Adam Clendining (United States)
Defence – Brandon Gormley (Atlantic)
Forward – Guillaume Asselin (Quebec)
Forward – John McFarland (Ontario)
Forward – Brandon Saad (United States)
Media inquiries can be directed to Jason La Rose, who is on site at the 2009 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge. He can be reached at 403-703-8791 or firstname.lastname@example.org.