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Pinelli among 13 OHLers recognized by Hockey Canada for invitation to U18 Selection Camp

Ontario Hockey League

 

CALGARY, Alta. – Kitchener Rangers forward Francesco Pinelli was among 13 Ontario Hockey League players recognized by Hockey Canada invited to attend Canada’s National Men’s Summer Under-18 Team selection camp. Owen Sound Attack head coach Alan Letang was also recognized for being named an assistant coach for the group of 46 total players.

Pinelli was among 26 forwards, six goaltenders, and 14 defencemen set to compete for a chance to represent Canada at the 2020 Hlinka Gretzky Cup, which was scheduled for Aug. 3-8 in Edmonton and Red Deer, Alta., before it was canceled April 28 due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The camp roster featured 42 players who played for Team Canada Black, Team Canada Red or Team Canada White at the 2019 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge in Medicine Hat, Alta., and Swift Current, Sask., last November. A total of two OHL goaltenders, two defencemen, and nine forwards were recognized.

“It is important for Hockey Canada to recognize the work the players and coaching staff already put in to prepare for the summer and a chance to compete for gold on home ice,” said Scott Salmond, senior vice-president of national teams for Hockey Canada. “It was a difficult decision to cancel the tournament, as it provides the opportunity to showcase the top under-18 players in a best-on-best international showcase. We want to recognize the 46 players and our three coaches for this tremendous accomplishment, and we look forward to watching all players continue to develop as they look ahead to next season and a chance to compete at the IIHF U18 World Championship.”

National Summer Under-18 Team assistant coach Alan Letang was named head coach of the Owen Sound Attack of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) in January 2019 after joining the team as an assistant coach in 2016. He also spent two seasons (2014-16) as an assistant with Medvescak Zagreb in the KHL following an 18-year pro career. Letang won a gold medal as an assistant coach with Canada’s National Junior Team at the 2020 IIHF World Junior Championship and, as a player, helped Canada’s National Men’s Team win the 1998 Spengler Cup, along with a bronze medal at the 2006 Deutschland Cup.

With the cancellation of the Hlinka Gretzky Cup, the focus will now turn to the 2021 IIHF U18 World Championship next spring; a host city has not yet been announced. The Czech Republic and Slovakia will host the 2021 Hlinka Gretzky Cup before it returns to Edmonton and Red Deer in 2022.

OHL Players Invited to Canada’s National Summer Under-18 Team Selection Camp

Goaltenders:
Matteo Drobac (Hamilton Bulldogs)
Benjamin Gaudreau (Sarnia Sting)

Defencemen:
Brandt Clarke (Barrie Colts)
Jacob Holmes (Soo Greyhounds)

Forwards:
Liam Arnsby (North Bay Battalion)
Brett Harrison (Oshawa Generals)
Wyatt Johnston (Windsor Spitfires)
Connor Lockhart (Erie Otters)
Mason McTavish (Peterborough Petes)
Brennan Othmann (Flint Firebirds)
Francesco Pinelli (Kitchener Rangers)
Chase Stillman (Sudbury Wolves)
Danny Zhilkin (Guelph Storm)

Coaches:
Assistant Coach – Alan Letang (Owen Sound Attack)

For more information on Hockey Canada and the Program of Excellence, visit HockeyCanada.ca, or follow along via social media on Facebook, Twitter, and Twitter.com/HC_Men.

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