Niku, Parikka prominent on defense for Finland at the U18

by Chapin Landvogt
on

Jarkko Parikka - Team Finland

Photo: Team Finland defenseman Jarkko Parikka played for the Des Moines Buccaneers in the 2013-14 season, picking up eight points in 51 games (courtesy of Chapin Landvogt/HF)

Despite failing to medal at the 2014 IIHF U18 World Championship, host team Finland was received well by the hometown fans in Lappeenranta and Imatra. Many of Finland’s players stood out positively in their five games, with blueliners Sami Niku and Jarkko Parikka having been very noticeable on the blueline.

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2014 U18 Video: Shane Gersich, USA

by Chapin Landvogt
on

Shane Gersich - Team USA

Photo: Team USA forward and 2014 prospect Shane Gersich has committed to attend the University of North Dakota but may play for the USHL’s Omaha Lancers in 2014-15 (courtesy of Chapin Landvogt/HF)

After opening a 3-1 lead in the first period, Team USA cruised to their fifth gold medal in the past six years at the 2014 edition of the IIHF U18 World Championship. Forward Auston Matthews was the scoring hero for the U.S. as he scored two goals and added an assist in the win over the Czech Republic.

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2014 U18 Video: Ryan Collins, USA

by Chapin Landvogt
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Ryan Collins - Team USA

Photo: Team USA defenseman and 2014 prospect Ryan Collins is ranked 57th among North American skaters by Central Scouting for the 2014 NHL Draft (courtesy of Chapin Landvogt/HF)

Team USA returned to the top of the U18 hockey heap after defeating the Czech Republic, 5-2, to win gold at the 2014 IIHF U18 World Championship in Lappeenranta, Finland. The U.S. had a string of four consecutive gold medal wins at this tournament ended by Canada at the 2013 event.

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2014 U18 Video: Jack Eichel, USA

by Chapin Landvogt
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Jack Eichel - Team USA

Photo: Team USA forward and 2015 prospect Jack Eichel is slated to attend Boston University starting in the fall of 2014 (courtesy of Chapin Landvogt/HF)

After losing out to Canada in last year's gold medal game at the IIHF U18 World Championship, Team USA defeated the Czech Republic, 5-2, to earn their fifth gold medal in six years at this event.

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2014 U18 Video: Waltteri Hopponen, Finland

by Chapin Landvogt
on

Waltteri Hopponen - Team Finland

Photo: Team Finland forward and 2014 prospect Waltteri Hopponen began the season with the WHL’s Everett Silvertips, but was released once Mirco Mueller returned to the Silvertips from the San Jose Sharks (courtesy of Chapin Landvogt/HF)

The host country for the 2014 IIHF U18 World Championship, Finland, was no doubt hoping to repeat the gold medal performance of that country's U20 squad's win in January at the 2014 IIHF U20 World Junior Championship that was held in Malmo, Sweden.

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