World Under-17’s underway

The opening weekend of the 2018 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge in New Brunswick didn’t quite go the way that two members of the Prince Albert Raiders were hoping for.

Defenceman Kaiden Guhle and Canada Red dropped a 4-2 decision to Russia in a game that spanned two days, while forward Ozzy Wiesblatt and Canada Black came out on the wrong end of a 5-4 overtime affair with Canada White Sunday.

Canada Red’s tournament opener originally got underway Saturday evening in Quispamsis, but was suspended with less than eight minutes to go in the third period due to a power outage and resumed Sunday afternoon.

Iliya Rychkov and Marat Khusnudinov led the way for the Russians with a goal and an assist each, while Portland Winterhawks forward Seth Jarvis matched that feat for Canada Red.

Guhle, who is the captain for his team, was held off the scoresheet.

Meanwhile in Saint John, Kootenay Ice forward Connor McClennon was the hero for Canada White as he scored 35 seconds into overtime to seal the victory.

Cole Perfetti of the Saginaw Spirit led the way on offence with a goal and three assists.

Wiesblatt, who is an assistant captain for Canada Black, did not record a point.

In the other round-robin games, Sweden cruised to a 6-1 win over Finland despite being outshot heavily, and the United States picked up a 5-1 victory over the Czech Republic thanks to two-point performances by Landon Slaggert and one-time Prince Albert Raiders draft pick Hunter Strand, whose rights are now held by the Victoria Royals.

Both Raiders rookies will be back in action Monday as Guhle and Canada Red will take on Sweden, while Wiesblatt’s Canada Black squad goes up against the Czech Republic.

The other matchups will see Russia play Finland and Canada White going up against the United States.

Meanwhile, three members of the Raiders will be in action tonight in Kamloops, B.C. for the Canada Russia series.

Forwards Parker Kelly and Brett Leason, along with goaltender Ian Scott, are all part of Team WHL in an event that Hockey Canada uses to help to determine who will be invited to the World Junior Selection camp next month.

The contest will be aired nationally on Sportsnet starting at 9 p.m.

Sunday’s WHL Scores

  • Medicine Hat 5 Calgary 4 (Linus Nassen – Two Goals and One Assist)
  • Portland 8 Spokane 6 (Joachim Blichfeld – Two Goals and Three Assists)

Saturday’s WHL Scores

  • Red Deer 1 Calgary 0 (Ethan Anders – 34 Saves – Second Career Shutout)
  • Moose Jaw 5 Kootenay 1 (Keenan Taphorn – Two Goals)
  • Regina 6 Saskatoon 5 (Nick Henry and Jake Leschyshyn – Two Goals and One Assist)
  • Swift Current 4 Edmonton 3 (Andrew Fyten Overtime Winner – Isaac Poulter – 42 Saves)
  • Kelowna 4 Brandon 3 (Nolan Foote – Two Goals)
  • Portland 2 Victoria 1 (Shane Farkas – 34 Saves)
  • Prince George 2 Seattle 0 (Taylor Gauthier – 37 Saves – First Career Shutout)
  • Everett 6 Spokane 2 (Sahvan Khaira – Three Assists)
  • Vancouver 2 Kamloops 1 (David Tendeck – 29 Saves)

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