Harrison Blaisell hugs Ross Armour during a preliminary round game at the 2017 World Junior A Challenge. Blaisdell and Corey Andonovski helped Team Canada West win gold Saturday, topping the United States 5-1. HOCKEY CANADA PHOTO

Chilliwack Chiefs duo helps Team Canada West win gold

A 5-1 victory over the United States finished off a World Junior A Challenge triumph in Nova Scotia.

Chilliwack Chief Corey Andonovski had one of Team Canada West’s goals in a 5-1 gold-medal match win over the United States.

The teams met Saturday morning at the RECC Arena in Truro, Nova Scotia in the final of the 2017 World Junior A Challenge.

The United States, stocked with the best of the best from the USHL, beat Team Canada West 2-1 earlier in the tournament, but the table flipped in the final.

Goaltender Zach Rose (Victoria Grizzlies) was spectacular, turning in a 35 save performance.

He was at his best in the final 40 minutes, making 14 saves in the second period and 12 more in the third to help the Canadians win.

He was named the MVP of the tournament after the game.

Team Canada West spread around the scoring, with five different players netting goals and 10 recording points.

Brendan Budy (Langley Rivermen) sniped the all-important first goal, racing away on a shorthanded breakaway and beating U.S. goaltender Jake Kucharski on the blocker side just 9:06 in.

Angus Crookshank, Budy’s teammate with the Rivermen, doubled the advantage three-and-a-half minutes later, playing give and go with Ethan de Jong (Prince George, BCHL) to send the Canadians to the dressing room up by a pair.

Andonovski gave the westerners a little more breathing room at 12:15 of the middle frame, dancing around a defender before sneaking in a shot to the far side of Kucharski.

His tally chased the goalie from his cage. Kucharski had allowed just a single goal in two games entering the final. He was replaced by Ryan Bischel after giving up three on 12 shots in 32 minutes of work.

Jake Drury gave the Americans life with a power play goal late in the second period, chipping a rebound over Rose. Sam Hentges was inches away from pulling the U.S. within one, but his shot rang off the crossbar in the dying seconds to keep it a 3-1 game after 40 minutes.

Any U.S. momentum disappeared early in the third.

Crookshank set up Ross Armour (Trail) for his fourth goal of the tournament at 6:36, and Carter Turnbull (Powell River) forced a turnover deep in the American zone before feeding Dylan Holloway (Okotoks, AJHL) for the fifth and final Canadian marker just 32 seconds later.

This is the fifth gold for Team Canada West – joining 2006, 2007, 2011 and 2015 – and the first time in four tries it has toppled the Americans in the final.

Team Canada West became just the second team in the 12-year history of the World Junior A Challenge to win gold after losing both of its preliminary-round games, joining the 2011 edition of Team Canada West.

Andonovski finished the tournament with one goal and two penalty minutes in five games.

Blaisdell was held off the scoresheet in the final and finished the tourney with one goal and two penalty minutes in four games.

See hockeycanada.ca/en-ca/national-championships/men/world-junior-a/2017

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Boulders near Harrison vandalized with derogatory word

Vandalism likely occured between Sunday evening and Tuesday evening

Clothing charity returns to Chilliwack to hand out free goods

Clothes2U will be back at local church to give away clothing, household items, more to those in need

First rainstorm of the season pelting the Lower Mainland

Batten down the hatches as heavy rains, wind, and some localized flooding possible

Atchelitz Threshermen’s big garage sale in Chilliwack goes ahead this weekend

The annual fundraiser for the association was delayed this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic

B.C. reports 91 new cases as officials remain worried over ‘clusters of COVID-19

There have now been a total of 8,395 cases in B.C. since the pandemic began

Canada’s active COVID-19 cases top 10,000 as daily new cases triple over the past month

Dr. Tam repeated her warning to young people, who have made up the majority of recent cases

First 8 months of fatal overdoses in B.C. have now exceeded 2019 death toll

Nine people died every two days in August, BC Coroners Service data shows

Liberal effort to reset policy agenda panned by rivals as too much talk, not action

Trudeau said it’s ‘all too likely’ families won’t be able to gather for Thanksgiving next month

Return-It depots change beverage container deposits from 20 to 10 cents

Change will be implemented on Oct. 1, with a transition period being held until Oct. 11

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

‘Show us the money’ for cannabis, local governments tell B.C.

Municipal tax, transit revenues falling as costs rise

Young man assaulted, left for 12 hours until help called in Vancouver’s Strathcona Park

Vancouver police are looking to identify the victim as they investigate an assault on Monday evening

Most Read