Hockey Alberta and BC Hockey announced Thursday, November 15, 2012 the 22-player roster that will represent Team Pacific at the 2013 World Under 17 Hockey Challenge, December 29, 2012 to January 4, 2013 in Victoriaville/Drummondville, Quebec.
Team Pacific is comprised of 11 players from BC and 11 players from Alberta. Hockey Alberta and BC Hockey each identified 34 U17 male athletes (4 G, 12 D, 18 F) from their respective provincial evaluation camps to participate in the joint regional camp in July, 2012. From the regional camp, these players were evaluated during the first part of their club’s team season by the Team Pacific evaluators.
“With this being the first year of the combined regional camp, it made for a unique evaluation process,” said Team Pacific Head Coach Jason Becker. “Wade Klippenstein, the Pacific region head scout, has done a great job in creating a fair and positive evaluation process.”
“Wade and his staff have done a terrific job evaluating every kid, getting the reports done and giving the coaches the best information possible to help us create the team we wanted,” added Becker. “They have done all the ground work and now it will be up to the Team Pacific staff to put together the best team possible on the ice.”
The 2013 World Under 17 Hockey Challenge brings together the top players in the world born 1996 or later. The tournament is made up of 10 teams; five (5) from Canada – Quebec, Ontario, Pacific (Alberta, British Columbia, Northwest Territories, Yukon), Atlantic (New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island) and West (Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Nunavut) and five (5) international teams.
Team Pacific will be competing in Group A at the World Under 17 Hockey Challenge with Team West, Sweden, Finland and Russia. Group B will comprise of Slovakia, the United States, Ontario, Team Atlantic and Quebec. Team Pacific will play an exhibition game against the United States on December 28, 2012 before they play their first preliminary round contest against defending gold medallist Russia on December 29, 2012.
The gold medal game will be held January 4, 2013 at 7:30pm ET/3:30 pm PST and will be shown on TSN/RDS, Hockey Canada’s official broadcasters. All other games at the tournament, including preliminary round contests, placement games, semifinals and the bronze medal game, will be available through FAST Hockey at www.hockeycanada.fasthockey.com.
At the 2012 World Under 17 Hockey Challenge in Windsor, Ontario, Team Pacific finished in fifth place after defeating Quebec five (5) to four (4) in overtime.
Team Pacific has included some of the top hockey players that Canada has ever produced. Some notable graduates who have competed on Team Pacific include:
- Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, 2010
- Evander Kane, 2008
- Brent Seabrook, 2002
- Dion Phaneuf, 2002
- Mike Green, 2002
- Jarome Iginla, 1994
- Joe Sakic, 1986
The Under 17 program is the first stop in Hockey Canada’s Program of Excellence. Many players who compete at the World Under 17 Hockey Challenge go on to represent Canada with the National Men’s Under 18 Team, National Junior Team and National Men’s Team.