BURZAN SCORES TWICE, RED GETS FIRST WIN AT U18 SELECTION CAMP
JASON LA ROSE
CALGARY, Alta. – Luka Burzan (Surrey, B.C./Moose Jaw, WHL) scored twice, including the game-winning goal, to get Red into the win column first at Canada’s National Men’s Summer Under-18 Team selection camp with a 5-3 victory over White on Sunday night.
Ryan Merkley (Mississauga, Ont./Guelph, OHL) and Barrett Hayton (Peterborough, Ont./Sault Ste. Marie, OHL) added a goal and an assist apiece for Red, which led 2-0 after one period and 4-1 after two.
Burzan didn’t waste any time getting the scoring started, taking a behind-the-net feed from Riley Damiani (Mississauga, Ont./Kitchener, OHL) and tucking a backhand past White goaltender Kevin Mandolese (Blainville, Que./Cape Breton, QMJHL) just 1:29 in.
Merkley made it 2-0 at 4:20, jumping into the rush on a three-on-two and snapping a low shot past Mandolese to double the advantage.
Red netminder Olivier Rodrigue (Chicoutimi, Que./Drummondville, QMJHL), who finished with 21 stops, was at his busiest in the first period, turning aside all 10 shots sent his way.
White got one back very early in the second period, with Aidan Dudas (Parry Sound, Ont./Owen Sound, OHL) finishing off a set-up from Jack McBain (Toronto, Ont./Toronto Jr. Canadiens, OJHL) just 19 seconds after the puck dropped, but Jackson Shepard (West Vancouver, B.C./Kamloops, WHL) converted a shorthanded breakaway at 6:32 to restore the two-goal advantage.
Red controlled the play in the middle frame, outshooting White 8-3, and added another goal with just over six minutes to go when Burzan finished a give-and-go with Merkley for his second of the game.
Hayton pushed the lead to four just 62 seconds into the third period, going end-to-end before wiring a shot upstairs on Mandolese.
Serron Noel (Ottawa, Ont./Oshawa, OHL) got one back for White just before the six-minute mark, tapping in a cross-crease feed from Akil Thomas (Toronto, Ont,/Niagara, OHL), and Benoît-Olivier Groulx (Gatineau, Que./Halifax, QMJHL) made it a two-goal game with five minutes left, but White would get no closer.
The teams are right back on the ice Monday afternoon (3 p.m. MT) for the second of three intrasquad games.