Spokane Chiefs captain Jared Cowen finds out this morning if he makes Canada's team for the World Junior Tournament. Check back later, but read below for a story about the Tuesday night exhibition, which includes a comment from Cowen.
Meanwhile, the Chiefs defeated Seattle last night and have a key game with Portland at the Arena tonight. In addition to Cowen being gone, I'm pretty sure the Chiefs will be without Tyler Johnson, who has to be at the US camp for World Junior tryouts tomorrow in Grand Forks, N.D. Not sure you can get there from here so he's probably spending today traveling.
By GREG HARDER
Decision Day has arrived for Canada.
The national team’s brass is slated to unveil its 22-man roster this morning for the 2010 world junior hockey championship in Saskatchewan. That means eight players will be cut from the group that was trying to make a final impression during Tuesday’s exhibition contest against a team of Saskatchewan university all-stars, who skated to a 4-2 win over Canada before 3,329 fans at the .
“To tell you the truth I wanted to win,” lamented Canadian , whose team outshot the CIS squad 39-23. “I didn’t want the score that way but I did get the game I wanted. They’re a real good team and they made us play hard. There will be stuff on the video that we’ll see that can make us better.”
Desjardins said he expected a long night ahead to pore over the roster and make some “tough decisions” on who to send home and who to keep.
Brayden Schenn hopes he’ll be one of the latter after being cut from last year’s selection camp.
“I was a year younger; that year makes quite a difference,” noted the Brandon Wheat Kings star, who’s auditioning for a job at centre. “You have three days to try to prove yourself. I thought I made a pretty good impression but I’ll have to wait and see. It’s just a waiting game.”
Although Canada was looking for a win on Tuesday, the result quickly shifted to the backburner after the players left the ice — and reality set in.
“It was anxious talking to guys right now; we just want to get it over with and find out,” said defenceman Jared Cowen. “It has been a long time coming — it’s kind of weird that it’s on the final day. I’ve done all I could. I’m pretty happy with how I played. I did what I set out to do so no regrets really.”
As for the game, Team Sask came out firing and outshot the Canadians 14-10 in the opening period while outscoring them 1-0 courtesy of a goal by Chris Durand. Nazem Kadri had a chance to even it up with two seconds left in the frame but he was stoned on the breakaway by goaltender Olivier Roy, a hopeful who started for Saskatchewan.
The university squad went up 2-0 early in the second on a goal by Brennan Bosch, a former Desjardins pupil with the WHL’s Medicine Hat Tigers. Bosch’s goal was the first and only shot of the middle frame for Team Sask. Canada had 14 and scored twice — on goals by Philippe Cornet and Dylan Olsen — to tie it up.
The CIS went up 3-2 in the third on a goal by Steve DaSilva, who later added an insurance marker with 2:34 remaining to round out the scoring.
Team Canada rotated three of its own goalies through both lineups. Matt Hackett started for Canada, stopping 13 of 14 shots in the first period. He switched teams in the second, turning aside 12 of 14 (25 of 28 overall). Martin Jones allowed a goal on the lone shot he faced in the second period before switching to the CIS side for the third, stopping all 15 shots he faced (15 of 16 overall). Roy returned for the third, making six saves on eight shots for Canada (16 of 18 overall).
After regulation time, the teams played five minutes of four-on-four. There was no scoring, although defenceman — who was singled out by Desjardins after the game as a player who “stood out” — beat Jones a split second after time had expired.
EXTRAS: Canada’s healthy scratches were goalie Jake Allen, forwards Jordan Eberle, Patrice Cormier, Stefan Della Rovere and Brandon McMillan, along with D-men Alex Pietrangelo, Ryan Ellis and Marco Scandella. Their spots on the team are apparently secure . . . LW Scott Glennie has been knocked out of the running with a concussion . . . The lone returning player who dressed Tuesday was Teubert, who wore the C . . . As part of a team-building exercise, Team Canada will spend time Thursday and Friday at the RCMP training facility in Regina. The first is Sunday against Sweden (7 p.m., Brandt Centre) in a rematch of the past two gold-medal finals.