Gaudreau named to Team Canada for world junior championship

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Ben Gaudreau has already won a gold medal with Team Canada and now he has a chance to do it again.

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The Sarnia Sting goaltender was named to Hockey Canada’s 22-man roster for the World Junior Ice Hockey Championships.

Sting head coach Alan Letang is the assistant coach of Team Canada, which ended its four-day selection camp in Moncton, NB on Monday

The International Ice Hockey Federation tournament will be held in Halifax and Moncton from December 26th to January 5th.

Sting forward Sandis Vilmanis is away with Team Latvia although his line-up has not yet been announced.

Gaudreau, 19, made his debut for Team Canada at the 2021 U18 World Cup in Frisco, Texas, where he won gold and was named the tournament’s best goaltender.

Thomas Milic of the Seattle Thunderbirds is the other goaltender selected for the junior national team. He and Gaudreau beat out Tyler Brennan and William Rousseau for the two spots.

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The roster includes five other Ontario Hockey League players: forwards Brennan Othmann (Peterborough) and Shane Wright (Kingston), and defensemen Brandt Clarke (Barrie), Ethan Del Mastro (Mississauga) and Jack Matier (Ottawa). Wright and Clarke play in the NHL but were loaned out to the junior team by the Seattle Kraken and Los Angeles Kings, respectively.

Alan Millar, Director of Player Personnel for Hockey Canada, a former Sting general manager, helped select the roster. Letang and the other coaches also gave input.

“We believe we have assembled a comprehensive and talented roster that will give us the best opportunity to defend gold on home ice,” Millar said in a statement.

The selection camp ended with an exhibition match between the hopefuls of Team Canada and an all-star team from U Sports. Gaudreau stopped 17 of 19 shots as he and Milic took turns playing for each team.

Team Canada will train in St. Stephen, NB from December 14th to 18th and then play Switzerland, December 21st Slovakia and Finland December 23rd before the tournament.