poe alumni in 2018 memorial cup
Red and white in Regina
Team Canada alumni have taken their talents to the 2018 Memorial Cup
Jason La Rose
May 23, 2018

The eyes of the junior hockey world are on Regina this week for the Memorial Cup, and more than a few Team Canada alumni are taking their turns in the national spotlight.

In all, 26 players who have worn the Maple Leaf in the Program of Excellence are in Saskatchewan, trying to add a national Major Junior championship to their résumés.

That list includes 25 players who played at the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge (everyone except Josh Mahura, who was named to U17s before being injured just prior to the 2014 tournament), seven at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Cup, six at the IIHF U18 World Championship and three who helped Canada to gold at the 2018 IIHF World Junior Championship.

Here’s a closer look at how each team breaks down:


Alumnus to watch:
Noah Dobson – The Prince Edward Island native, projected to go early in the 2018 NHL Entry Draft, made his international debut at the 2016 IIHF World Under-17 Hockey Challenge, helping Canada Red win its preliminary-round group before an upset loss to Canada White in the quarter-finals. Last summer, Dobson was part of a highly-touted blue-line corps that helped Canada to its ninth gold medal in 10 years at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Cup; he finished with three assists in five games, including a pair of helpers in the final.

Other POE alumni:
Mitchell Balmas – U17 (J2014, N2014)
Evan Fitzpatrick – U17 (N2014), U18 WC (2016)
Olivier Galipeau – U17 (J2014)
Adam Holwell – U17 (J2014)
Jordan Maher – U17 (N2014)
Antoine Morand – U17 (2015)


Alumnus to watch:
Robert Thomas – A first-round pick of St. Louis (20th overall) in 2017, Thomas has stood atop the podium both times he has represented his country. After helping Canada White to gold at the 2015 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge, Thomas – who is chasing a second Memorial Cup title after winning with London in 2016 – chipped in one goal (the game-winner against Denmark) and five assists in seven games as part of a golden Canadian performance at the 2018 IIHF World Junior Championship in Buffalo.

Other POE alumni:
Justin Lemcke – U17 (J2014)
Will Bitten – U17 (N2014), U18 IH (2015), U18 WC (2016)
Brandon Saigeon – U17 (N2014)
Matthew Strome – U17 (2015), U18 IH (2016), U18 WC (2017)
MacKenzie Entwistle – U17 (2015), U18 IH (2017), U18 WC (2017)


Alumnus to watch:
Sam Steel – The Pats’ captain, taken 30th overall by Anaheim in the 2016 NHL Entry Draft, has been a three-time member of the red-and-white. His international debut came at the 2014 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge, where he had three points in five games for a Canada Black team that finished seventh. After helping Canada to its eighth-straight gold at the 2015 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Cup, Steel finished second in Canadian scoring (4-5—9) at the 2018 World Juniors, registering at least a point in every game as Canada won gold.

Other POE alumni:
Jake Leschyshyn – U17 (2015)
Koby Morrisseau – U17 (2016)
Cameron Hebig – U17 (J2014)
Jesse Gabrielle – U17 (J2014)
Ryan Kubic – U17 (N2014)
Josh Mahura – U18 IH (2015)


Alumnus to watch:
Tyler Steenbergen – The Sylvan Lake, Alta., product and Arizona draft pick (128th overall in 2017) has only played for Canada once, and he only scored one goal, but he will forever have a place in Canadian hockey lore. Steenbergen, who spent most of the 2018 IIHF World Junior Championship as the 13th forward, tipped in the game-winning goal with just 1:40 to go in the gold medal game in Buffalo, giving Canada a thrilling win over Sweden and its 17th gold medal at the World Juniors.

Other POE alumni:
Glenn Gawdin – U17 (J2014), U18 WC (2015)
Beck Malenstyn – U17 (N2014), U18 IH (2015), U18 WC (2016)
Giorgio Estephan – U17 (J2014)
Matteo Gennaro – U17 (J2014)
Josh Anderson – U17 (N2014)
Jacson Alexander – U17 (2017)

For more information:

Director, Communications
Hockey Canada


Esther Madziya
Coordinator, Media Relations
Hockey Canada
[email protected]


Spencer Sharkey
Coordinator, Communications
Hockey Canada
403-777-4567 / 905-906-5327 (mobile)
[email protected]


Katie Macleod
Coordinator, Media Relations
Hockey Canada
403-284-6427 / 403-612-2893 (mobile)
[email protected]


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