2017 rbc cup may 21 cob bro
© Matthew Murnaghan / Hockey Canada Images

Cobourg Cougars win 2017 RBC Cup on home ice

Brooks Bandits heading back to Alberta with silver following OT final

May 21, 2017

COBOURG, Ont. – The Cobourg Cougars, hosts of the 2017 RBC Cup, have been crowned this year’s national Junior A champions following a 3-2 overtime win over the Brooks Bandits.

The Cougars opened up the scoring 3:56 into the first period on a goal by Jamie Huber (Goderich, Ont.). Conner Jean (Oakland, Mich.) tied it up for the Bandits less than five minutes later, and the teams would stay at one goal apiece until a third-period goal by Bandits’ captain Nick Prkusic (Medicine Hat, Alta.) at 11:29 of the third.

Ryan Casselman (Napanee, Ont.) forced the game into overtime, scoring with just 67 seconds to go in regulation time; Nick Minerva (New Brunswick, N.J.) brought the building to its feet, netting the game-winner at 8:21 in overtime.

“When I was sitting on the bench, I was saying to Matt Bumstead, my D partner, and we were talking about how we were gonna end this thing, somehow, some way,” said Minerva during the on-ice celebration with his team. “I saw the puck come out, it kind of bobbled a little bit, and I saw that the Brooks guys didn’t challenge me at all. I blacked out and closed my eyes, took the hardest shot I ever took in my life, and it went it. It still hasn’t really hit me to be honest with you.”

The Cougars’ Stefano Durante (Brampton, Ont.) – the 2017 RBC Cup Top Goaltender – turned away 41 shots in the win. Tournament MVP Cale Makar (Calgary) was the only player on either team to earn two points in the game, assisting on both Brooks goals, including the go-ahead-goal by Prkusic.

“[The season] was incredible. To me, we’re the best team in this country, and when it comes down to one game where anything can happen, and the worst happened,” said an emotional Prkusic after some time with his teammates in the Brooks dressing room following the game. “I love that group of guys in there, and I wouldn’t change a thing. I’ll have those memories for the rest of my life – it was the best year of my life, and the best three years of my life, and I can’t say enough about the organization, the coaches, the fans, the community.”

Brooks heads home as AJHL and Western Canada Cup champions, having lost only six of 84 games in regulation time this season.

The RBC Cup is made possible thanks to the partnership between Hockey Canada and the Canadian Junior Hockey League (CJHL), and the support of RBC. For more information on the 2017 RBC Cup, please visit HockeyCanada.ca/RBCCup, or follow along via social media on Facebook or Twitter.

For more information:

Esther Madziya
Manager, Communications
Hockey Canada

(403) 284-6484 

[email protected] 

Spencer Sharkey
Manager, Communications
Hockey Canada

(403) 777-4567

[email protected]

Jeremy Knight
Manager, Corporate Communications
Hockey Canada

(647) 251-9738

[email protected]

2023 U18 Nationals: Saturday, November 11 (Medal Games)
Ontario Red won a 13th U18 Nationals gold in Dawson Creek
2023 U18 Nationals: Friday, November 10 (Semifinals & Placement)
Ontario Red and Quebec will play for U18 Nationals gold in Dawson Creek.
2023 U18 Nationals: Thursday, November 9 (Quarterfinals)
Alberta, B.C., Ontario Red and Quebec advanced to the semifinals in Dawson Creek.
2023 U18 Nationals: Tuesday, November 7 (Preliminary)
Ontario Red and Quebec finish the preliminary round undefeated in Dawson Creek.