The CAMROSE BOOSTER December 27, 2011
Team USA loses first game to Russians By Murray Green
John George White John George White was born on August 22, 1938 and passed away suddenly at Peter Lougheed Hospital, Calgary, Alberta on December 17, 2011. John lived in Donalda, Alberta with his wife until his passing. John leaves behind his loving wife Reta and five children from his first marriage, son Bob (Nancy) White; daughter Colleen and her s ons Colin and Bobby Wack; son Jim (Dianne) and their three children John, Jamie and Debra White; son Doug White; son Jonathan (Brigget) White; stepchildren Glen Sturt-Smith, Kathy (John) Jackson and their children Stacey, Grant and Gerry, Edward (Andrea) Chadwick and two children Matthew and Lauren. He also leaves brothers Jim and Phillip; sisters Kitty and Eileen; numerous nieces, nephews, many friends and loved ones. He was predeceased by his parents Margaret and Jim White; brothers Bob, Colin, Arthur; and sisters Joan and Barbra. No formal funeral will be held at this time. Memorial donations may b e made to the charity of y our own choice c/o Stettler Funeral Home, B ox 1780, Stettler, AB, T0C 2L0. Sy mpathies may b e forwarded to the family by signing the guestbook at www.stettlerfuneralhome.com.
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Both Campbell and Zucker were also members of the gold medal-winning 2010 U.S. National Junior Team. USA lost 6-3 to Russia to start the pre-tournament. "Russia always has a good team, but you can't judge it by the first game. It was our first game and everyone is trying to get to know each other. It is a good wakeup call for us and it will get us going for the next couple of games," added Nick. "Hopefully, we see Russia again. We have made adjustments and changed the line combinations. Our coaches are watching video and breaking the game down and seeing where we can improve." Team USA has Canada and Russia, the two teams that finished ahead of them last year, in their sights. "You have to take it game by game because every team is go od, but Canada and Russia are great teams. It will be crazy (atmosphere) when we play in Canada's barn. It will be a fun environment." Nick had some good things to say about Switzerland. "They have a quick transition team and some good forwards, and if I recall last year, they have good goaltending as well," he added. "They have a good all-around team and you have to be ready to bring your game each time out." The tournament means a lot to Nick. "I watched the team win two years ago and I've always looked up to guys who have played in this tournament. It is an honour to put on the USA jersey and play here. A l ot of good players have played in this tournament and it definitely opens your eyes a bit. We are playing against the best competition in the world and it is a stepping stone." A medal will be another stepping stone for Nick as he hopes to follow his dad into the NHL.
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Scott Bjugstad played for the University of Minnesota and on the USA Olympic team before going on to score 43 goals in 198586 in the Minnesota North Stars of the National Hockey League. His son Nick has already drawn huge comparisons and will one day suit up in the NHL. After being a s tar in high school hockey, Nick received a scholarship to join the University of Minnesota. This will be his second tour of duty with Team USA at the World Junior Championship. He sat out the first exhibition game against Russia with a shoulder injury. "I got dinged up a bit in the last college game I played," said Nick. "I'll be ready to go for the final exhibition game and for the tournament. I'm re covering fast and it was nothing serious." Nick and the 2012 U.S. National Junior Team has called Camrose home prior to the tournament that begins on Boxing Day. Team USA will look to earn its third straight medal after capturing the bronze medal at the 2011 IIHF World Junior Championship in Buffalo, N.Y., and the gold medal at the 2010 IIHF World Junior Championship in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. "Our team this year is pretty similar to last year. We have speed, really fast forwards and big defencemen in back," said Nick. "We have a lot of returning players, good players like Jason Zucker and Jack Campbell in goal, so we have the guys in place for leadership roles. It is good to have that and we have some good young players as well." After winning the bronze medal last year, seven players are returning to seek a d ifferent medal this time: goaltender Jack Campbell, defencemen Derek Forbort, Jon Merrill, forwards Nick Bjugstad, Charlie Coyle, Emerson Etem and Jason Zucker.
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Emerson Etem of the winning Team USA squad cuts to the net, but goalie Lukas Meili of Switzerland holds his space in the 7-3 game. The exhibition game in Camrose will help both teams as they prepare for the World Junior Hockey Championship that started on Boxing Day in Edmonton and Calgary.