December 21, 2008 - North American Hockey League (NAHL) - U.S. National Team
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -﻿ Defenseman Jonathon Blum (Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif.) has been named captain of the 2009 U.S. National Junior Team that will compete in the upcoming International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championship, Dec. 26 - Jan. 5, in Ottawa, Ontario. The announcement came today from U.S. Head Coach Ron Rolston.
In addition, forward Colin Wilson (Greenwich, Conn./Boston University) and defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk (New Rochelle, N.Y./Boston University) have been named alternate captains.
The U.S. will take on Latvia tonight in one of its two pre-tournament games at the K-Rock Centre in Kingston, Ontario. Opening faceoff is set for 7 p.m. EST.
NOTES: The 2009 U.S. National Junior Team trained in Lake Placid, N.Y., at the Olympic Training Center from Dec. 16-20 ... Ron Rolston (Ann Arbor, Mich.), head coach of the U.S. National Under-18 Team within USA Hockey\'s National Team Development Program, is the head coach of the 2009 U.S. National Junior Team. Nate Leaman (Clifton Park, N.Y./Union College) and P.K. O'Handley (Waterloo, Iowa/Waterloo Black Hawks) are serving as assistant coaches, while Jeff Blashill (Indianapolis, Ind./Indiana Ice) is the goaltending coach ... The NHL Network will broadcast live all Team USA games in the 2009 IIHF World Junior Championship ... Team USA finished fourth at the 2008 IIHF World Junior Championship and has played for a medal in the event each of the last six years ... Schroeder, born Sept. 29, 1990, is the youngest member of Team USA, while Fairchild, born Jan. 15, 1989, is the oldest ... The United States will play two pre-tournament games prior to the 2009 World Junior Championship, including tonight (Dec. 21) against Latvia and Tuesday (Dec. 23) against Russia in Kingston, Ontario ... The University of Minnesota leads all NCAA teams with three players on the 2009 U.S. National Junior Team ... A total of five players currently play in the Hockey East Association, four play in the Central Collegiate Hockey Association and four compete in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association ... Thirteen members of the 2008 U.S. National Junior Team spent time with USA Hockey\'s National Team Development Program, including Cole, Fairchild, Jimmy Hayes, Mike Hoeffel, Danny Kristo, Jim O'Brien, Rust, Teddy Ruth, Schroeder, Shattenkirk, Unice, van Riemsdyk and Wilson ... Danny Kristo (Eden Prairie, Minn.), a member of the Omaha Lancers, is the only member of the 2009 U.S. National Junior Team that is currently playing for a United States Hockey League team, however, three other players have formerly played in the USHL, including Aaron Palushaj (Des Moines), Blake Kessel (Waterloo) and Jimmy Hayes (Lincoln). The USHL is the only Tier I junior league in the United States ... The 2009 IIHF World Junior Championship will feature the best athletes under the age of 20 on international teams including the United States, Canada, Czech Republic, Finland, Germany, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Russia, Slovakia and Sweden ... Linesman David Brown (Wall Township, N.J.) and referee Robert Ritchie (Scott Plains, N.J.) are the two officials from the United States who have been selected by the IIHF to officiate the 2009 World Junior Championship ... Visit USAHockey.com for complete coverage of Team USA in the IIHF World Junior Championship.