The U.S. National Junior Team met Russia in the quarterfinals of the 2018 IIHF World Junior Championship. Kieffer Bellows (Edina, Minn./Portland Winterhawks) scored twice and Joseph Woll (St. Louis, Mo./Boston College) made 27 saves to lead the U.S. National Junior Team past Russia, 4-2.
“What a terrific effort by our guys against a quality opponent,” said Bob Motzko, head coach of the 2018 U.S. National Junior Team. “We saw success in all facets of the game, from our special teams to our goaltending. We'll enjoy this tonight and tomorrow turn our attention to Sweden.”
2018 U.S. U.S. OLYMPIC TEAM HAS JUNIOR TEAM TIES
Among the first 23 players named to 2018 U.S. Olympic Men’s Ice Hockey Team on Jan. 1, 11 players have skated on a U.S. National Junior Team. Brian Gionta (Rochester, N.Y.), who was also named captain of Team USA, skated on two U.S. National Junior Teams (1998 - fifth; 1999 - fifth).
In addition, six players helped the U.S. earn a medal in IIHF World Junior Championship play. A year ago, Jordan Greenway (Canton, N.Y.) and Troy Terry (Highlands Ranch, Colo.) helped the 2017 U.S. National Junior Team to a gold medal while Ryan Donato (Scituate, Mass.) and Will Borgen (Moorhead, Minn.) were on the 2016 U.S. National Junior Team that earned a bronze medal. Additionally, James Wisniewski (Canton, Mich.) was part of the first-ever gold medal-winning U.S. National Junior Team in 2004 and Ryan Stoa (Bloomington, Minn.) helped the U.S. earn a bronze medal in 2007.
Other former U.S. National Junior Team players to be on the 2018 U.S. Olympic Men’s Ice Hockey Team include Jonathan Blum (Long Beach, Calif./2008, 2009), Chris Bourque (Boston, Mass./2005, 2006), Bobby Sanguinetti (Trenton, N.J./2008) and Jim Slater (Lapeer, Mich./2002).
TKACHUK'S EXCEL AT WORLD JUNIOR STAGE
Four games into this year's IIHF World Junior Championship, Brady Tkachuk (St. Louis, Mo./Boston University) is following in his family's footsteps as far as point getters go, sitting second on Team USA with six points (2-4). Two years ago, his brother Matthew tied for the U.S. team-lead with 11 points (4-7) in seven games while their father, Keith, followed a nine-point performance (6-3) in 1991 with a seven-point effort (3-4) in 1992. Both Matthew and Keith have earned WJC bronze medals.
Brady Tkachuk following in family's footsteps. Photo credit Bill Wippert