HELSINGBORG, Sweden – Riley Barber (Pittsburgh, Pa./Miami Univ.) was named captain of the 2014 U.S. National Junior Team, USA Hockey announced today. The alternate captains are Andrew Copp (Ann Arbor, Mich./Univ. of Michigan) and Matt Grzelcyk (Charlestown, Mass./Boston Univ.).
A year ago, Barber helped the U.S. National Junior Team capture the gold medal at the 2013 International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championship in Ufa, Russia. He contributed three goals and three assists. Barber, Copp and Grzelcyk were teammates on the U.S. squad that won the gold medal at the 2012 IIHF Men's Under-18 World Championship in Brno, Czech Republic.
Additionally, Team USA reduced its roster to 24 players today, one shy of the final number that will participate at the 2014 IIHF World Junior Championship Dec. 26, 2013-Jan. 5, 2014, in Malmo. The current roster includes 14 forwards, seven defensemen and three goalies.
"We are pleased to have settled on our three goaltenders and seven defensemen for the tournament," said Jim Johannson, general manager of the 2014 U.S. National Junior Team and also the assistant executive director of hockey operations for USA Hockey. "Due to a medical matter, we are still evaluating our forwards and expect to make a final decision by our first game on Dec. 26."
The U.S. begins defense of its gold medal against Czech Republic Thursday (Dec. 26) at 5:30 p.m. (11:30 a.m. ET). In the U.S., the game will be televised live on NHL Network (DirecTV 215, DISH 477) and streamed live on NHL.com.
NOTES: The U.S. has medaled in three of the last four IIHF World Junior Championships, including gold in 2013 and 2010 and bronze in 2011 ... Don Lucia (Plymouth, Minn.), head coach of the University of Minnesota men's ice hockey team, is the head coach of the 2014 U.S. National Junior Team. Bob Motzko (St. Cloud, Minn.), head coach of the St. Cloud State University men's ice hockey team, Greg Brown (Scituate, Mass.), associate head coach of the Boston College men's ice hockey team, and David Lassonde (Denver, Colo.), assistant coach of the University of Denver men's ice hockey team, are the assistant coaches. Dan Muse (Clinton, Conn.), assistant coach of Yale University's men's ice hockey team, is serving as the team's video coordinator... Jim Johannson (Colorado Springs, Colo.), USA Hockey's assistant executive director of hockey operations, is serving as the general manager of Team USA for the fifth consecutive year ... Don Waddell (Detroit, Mich.), an international consultant to USA Hockey, is assisting with player identification for Team USA ... The U.S. will compete in a group with Canada, Czech Republic, Germany and Slovakia at the 2014 IIHF World Junior Championship.