Langley Rivermen players Angus Crookshank (left) and Brendan Budy each scored a goal in Canada West’s 5-1 victory over the United States in the gold-medal game for the 2017 world junior A Challenge on Saturday in Nova Scotia. Submitted photo

Golden time in Nova Scotia for Langley duo

Rivermen players Brendan Budy and Angus Crookshank return to Langley with gold medals after helping Canada West take down the U.S.

Winning gold for your country is a dream of almost every young athlete.

And for two members of the Langley Rivermen, they achieved that dream on Saturday.

Brendan Budy and Angus Crookshank each scored a goal — Budy struck on a short-handed breakaway while Crookshank scored the eventual game-winner — in a 5-1 victory for Team Canada West over the United States.

The two teams were playing for gold on Saturday in Truro, N.S. at the 2017 World Junior A Challenge.

“It was a dream come true,” said Budy, the 17-year-old Rivermen captain and hometown Langley product. “As a kid, everyone dreams of putting the Canadian sweater on and I was fortunate enough to have the chance to win gold.

“And to do it on home soil is pretty special.”

Canada West lost their two preliminary games, falling 5-2 to the Czech Republic and 2-1 to the U.S. to finish third in Group A. But once the playoff round started, the team found its game, edging Canada East 4-3 in the quarter-finals and knocking off the Czech Republic 5-1 in the semifinals.

Crookshank — who had a goal and an assist in the gold-medal game — finished second on the team with two goals and five points in the five games while Budy potted a pair of goals.

“Surreal — I still get the chills thinking about it,” said Crookshank, an 18-year-old from North Vancouver. “You dream as a kid about winning a gold medal for Canada, especially over the U.S., that is one of the biggest rivalries.”

The experience was one neither player is likely to forget.

“Everywhere we went, people were asking for pictures and autographs,” Budy said.

Just for warm-ups, there would be 1,000 fans already in the 2,500-seat arena. The gold medal game was standing room only.

Both players were also happy to have family who flew in for the championships as Crookshank’s dad and Budy’s parents were in attendance for Saturday’s final.

“It was pretty cool for him to witness that,” Crookshank said. “He knows it has been a goal of mine for a while now. He kind of choked up when he saw it.”

Budy — who is committed to Denver for his college hockey — leads the Rivermen with a dozen goals and 33 points in 30 games.

Crookshank — who is committed to North Hampshire — battled injuries to start the season, but despite missing 15 games, leads the team with 14 goals and is tied for second with 25 points in just 22 games.

Missing nearly the first month of the season was not the start Crookshank was looking for, especially with his eye on earning a spot on the Canada West squad.

“But that just gave me fuel when I came back to make this team. Everything fell into place.”

The Rivermen are coming off a 5-1 win over Chilliwack and a 3-3 tie with Surrey over the weekend and sit in first place in the BCHL’s Mainland Division with a record of 17-9-9-2. The team returns to action on Dec. 29 for a pair of games in Prince George.



sports@langleytimes.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

150 spoons and counting

Langley Fine Arts teacher Panagiotis Peter Sarganis showcases wooden utensil artwork at Fort Gallery

Fort Langley residents launch passionate debate over demolishing buildings

More than 40 people spoke at a meeting Monday evening

VIDEO: Langley car wash fights cancer

Non-profit Volunteer Cancer Drivers Society reports record single donation from Langley

VIDEO: Hazmat incident closes down Langley City street

One person is believed to be dead, police said

Langley chamber of commerce upset about lack of funding for SkyTrain

An uncertain future for the extension to Langley is due to the budget

VIDEO: Missing teens named as suspects in three northern B.C. killings

Kam McLeod and Bryer Schmegelsky are wanted in the deaths of Lucas Fowler, Chynna Deese, unknown man

VIDEO: Man found dead near B.C. teens’ truck could be linked to a double homicide

RCMP said they are looking for Kam McLeod, 19, and Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, of Port Alberni

Weather Network’s anti-meat video ‘doesn’t reflect true story’: cattle ranchers

At issue is the video’s suggestion that cutting back on meat consumption could help save the planet

VIDEO: Young couple found dead in northern B.C. had been shot, police say

Chynna Noelle Deese of the U.S. and Lucas Robertson Fowler of Australia were found along Highway 97

Wrestling legend finds his wedding dance groove in B.C.

Professional wrestler Chris Jericho posted on social media that he was in Penticton recently

Vancouver Public Library banned from Pride parade after allowing controversial speaker

Vancouver Public Library allowed Meghan Murphy to book space for an event at the library in January

Man arrested after allegedly attacking people with syringe in Burnaby mall

Police say that no one has yet to come forward with injuries consistent with needle stab wounds

Limited-stop RapidBus service to roll out in Metro Vancouver starting January 2020

TransLink announced five routes that connect 11 communities

Horgan hints at Daylight Saving Time changes after record survey response

More than 223,000 online surveys were submitted in the government’s public consultation

Most Read