COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – USA Hockey unveiled today the 29 players selected to the preliminary roster for the 2016 U.S. National Junior Team. The players will attend training camp Dec. 14-18 at Boston University in Boston followed by an additional camp in Vierumaki, Finland, from Dec. 19-24. The final 23-man roster is expected to be named by Dec. 24. Team USA will compete in the 2016 International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championship, Dec.26-Jan.5, in Helsinki, Finland.
“This is a young, talented group that has experience winning on the international level,” said Jim Johannson, USA Hockey’s assistant executive director of hockey operations and the general manager of the 2016 U.S. National Junior Team. “The great variety and depth of talent represented by these players will make for some tough decisions, but that's certainly a good problem to have."
Seven camp invitees were members of the 2015 U.S. National Junior Team, including forwards Auston Matthews (Scottsdale, Ariz./ZSC Lions) and Sonny Milano (Massapequa, N.Y./Lake Erie Monsters); defensemen Brandon Carlo (Colorado Springs, Colo./Tri-City Americans), Ryan Collins (Bloomfield, Minn./University of Minnesota) and Zach Werenski (Grosse Pointe Woods, Mich./University of Michigan); and goaltenders Brandon Halverson (Traverse City, Mich./Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds) and Alex Nedeljkovic (Parma, Ohio/Flint Firebirds).
Additionally, 15 invitees have won gold medals as members of the U.S. Men's National Under-18 Team. Last season, Casey Fitzgerald (North Reading, Mass./Boston College), Clayton Keller(Swansea, Ill./U.S. National Under-18 Team), Chad Krys (Ridgefield, Conn./U.S. National Under-18 Team), Charlie McAvoy (Long Beach, N.Y./Boston University), Luke Opilka (St. Louis, Mo./Kitchener Rangers), Matthew Tkachuk (St. Louis, Mo./London Knights) and Colin White (Hanover, Mass./Boston College) helped Team USA win gold while Louie Belpedio (Skokie, Ill./Miami University), Anders Bjork (Mequon, Wis./University of Notre Dame), Collins, Brandon Fortunato (Albertson, N.Y./Boston University), Ryan Hitchcock (Manhasset, N.Y./Yale University), Milano and Nedeljkovic led Team USA to gold in 2014. Matthews was a member of both gold-medal winning squads.
|Date||Opponent||Location||Result||U.S. Player of the Game|
|Sat., Dec. 26||Canada||Helsinki Ice Hall||W, 4-2||Colin White|
|Mon., Dec. 28||Sweden||Helsinki Ice Hall||L, 0-1||Zach Werenski|
|Wed., Dec. 30||Switzerland||Helsinki Ice Hall||W, 10-1||Auston Matthews|
|Thu., Dec. 31||Denmark||Helsinki Ice Hall||W, 4-1||Brandon Carlo|
|Sat., Jan. 2||Czech Republic
|Helsinki Ice Hall||W, 7-0||Nick Schmaltz|
|Mon., Jan. 4||Russia
|Hartwall Arena||L, 1-2||Christian Dvorak|
|Tues. , Jan. 5||Sweden
Bronze Medal Game
|Hartwall Arena||W, 8-3||Anders Bjork|
NOTES: All practices in Boston will take place at Agganis Arena and are open to the public ... A total of 21 players named to the preliminary roster have ties to the United States Hockey League ... Team USA has medaled in three of the last six IIHF World Junior Championships, winning gold in 2010 and 2013, plus bronze in 2011. The U.S. placed fifth in last year's tournament … Ron Wilson (Riverside, R.I.) is head coach of the 2016 U.S. National Junior Team. Wilson directed the U.S. Olympic Men’s Ice Hockey team to the silver medal at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games, ranks eighth all-time in National Hockey League history in wins, and is the all-time winningest American coach in NHL history … The assistant coaches for Team USA are Chris Chelios (Chicago, Ill./Detroit Red Wings), Danton Cole (Pontiac, Mich./USA Hockey’s National Team Development Program) and Kevin Reiter (Pittsburgh, Pa./USA’s Hockey’s NTDP) … Nick Siergiej (South Bend, Ind./University of Notre Dame) is the 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 seventh consecutive year … Ryan Martin (Simsbury, Conn./Detroit Red Wings) and Ben Smith (Gloucester, Mass./USA Hockey) are assisting with player evaluation during training camp ... USA Hockey’s international council, chaired by Gavin Regan (Potsdam, N.Y.), vice president of USA Hockey, has oversight responsibilities for all U.S. national teams ... At the 2016 IIHF World Junior Championship, the U.S. will compete in a group with Canada, Denmark, Switzerland and Sweden. All U.S. games will be broadcast live on NHL Network. For more information about the tournament, please click here ... In August, 42 players attended the 2015 U.S. National Junior Evaluation Camp in Lake Placid, New York. Complete details from that camp can be found here.