America’s top junior hockey players will be in northern Canada the week after Christmas for the International Viking Cup Tournament in Camrose, Alberta. Twenty of the 25 players on the roster are from the United States Hockey League, and 11 play for teams in Iowa.
Waterloo Black Hawks Head Coach P.K. O’Handley will be leading the 18-and-under team and says Finland and Canada will be two of the contenders. He says they won’t play Canada until the medal round, but will play Finland. He says he expects them to be in the mix.
O’Handley says to play, or coach, for the U.S. is an honor. O’Handley says he’s done this twice before and may not get another opportunity, so he’s going to enjoy it.
Forward Zach Bearson has played for O’Handley for three seasons in Waterloo and will be joining his coach for the tournament. He says he’s played for the U.S. in some summer things, and says anytime you can play for your country it’s a great thing.
Play begins on December 26th, running through January 2nd. The U.S. team opens with Slovakia, then plays Germany, Switzerland, and Finland.