Cherepanov Cup 2013
A look back as Team GB U20’s competed in the invitation Cherepanov Cup in Lithuania.
In game one against Belarus U18s, a never say die attitude led to an amazing comeback.
Trailing by two goals late on, a powerplay and pulling the goalie for a 2 man advantage , led to Ivan Antonov halving the deficit.
It wouldn’t be in vain as with just 22 seconds left Lewis Hook would send the game to overtime.
No winner in OT sent the game to a shootout.
Adam Goss would keep out the Belarusian’s and a lone marker from Josh Cook gave GB the
win and two points.
3-2 SO Win
GB player of the game: Oliver Betteridge
Back down to earth in the second match against the Omsk Hawks, a well drilled team who had
the cohesion you would expect from guys who regularly play together.
In a feisty encounter GB spent far too much time in the penalty box and were made to pay the
price. The first four Hawks goals coming with the extra man and then converting a penalty shot
they earned short handed. Some nice stick handling and finish from Josh Cook put GB on the
board and they almost scored a second short handed.
A lone goal from Omsk in the third completed a 6-1 victory for them.
GB competed hard and never gave up but you can’t compete with teams when you take so many
penalties. Even strength they gave as good as they got.
GB player of the game: Josh Cook
A match-up against the home side, Lithuanian team Energy, was made harder as they decided
to forego their junior roster and dressed their men’s team.
For the first time in the tournament GB would take the lead, Lewis Hook with the goal.
The lead would be short-lived as Energy tied immediately on the powerplay.
GB would almost retake the lead during 4 on 4 play, only a scrambling play by the Energy goalie
kept the score level.
Surviving a 3 on 1 rush and Hedley (making his first start) coming up with some big saves, GB
would end the first period level.
GB would start the second period the better team but it went wrong quickly as Energy’s men
got their act together.
A powerplay goal followed by a penalty shot blew the game wide open. A fourth goal followed
before poor Hedley allowed a soft goal on a dump in, one he’d definitely want back.
The GB boys would respond and after a scramble in front Liam Charnock would score on the
An early goal from the home side in the third made it 6-2 but GB would not lay down.
JJ Pitchley would tally his first of the tournament before a buzzer beater from Liam Morris
would make the score 6-4. Another committed performance from GB who did well to compete
for the most part against a Men’s team, reminding ourselves that nine of the GB roster are aged just 16-17.
GB player of the game: Josh Grieveson
After a day off GB would face the unbeaten Kapitan, who didn’t take long to show why they were leading the tournament.
6.30 into the first period the Russians took the lead after controlling all the early play. They would double their lead with a power play tally.
Early in the second another man advantage goal from Kapitan made it 3-0 and GB had to kill several penalties to keep the score respectable.
After hanging in the game GB would garner some power play opportunities of their own and finally capitalise on a 5 on 3 with Lewis Hook finding the net. Another performance full of grit and heart against a better opponent the boys could be proud of.
GB player of the game: Matt Selby
The last fixture was against Poland U20s and penalty trouble was yet again the biggest problem for GB.
A 5 on 3 penalty kill early was a fantastic effort but it wasn’t long till Poland struck with two man advantage tallies in a short period.
GB would respond with a power play marker of their own. Need I say it was Lewis Hook who again tallied? Poland would respond straight away to extend their lead back to two goals.
The second period was halted due to the lights going out. On the resumption of play Poland would strike for their fourth goal of the game and there would be no further scoring.
GB player of the game: Jonathan Kirk
Despite a record of just one win from the five games, there were lots of positives to be drawn from this tournament. During even strength play GB competed well, even against the best team in Kapitan and showed plenty of commitment to the cause. They certainly never stopped trying their hearts out despite looking a little tired in the last match.
Taking penalties too frequently is an affliction the team will need to address heading into the World Championships but as with everything it’s a learning exercise and hopefully that lesson will have sunk in.
GB’s player of the tournament was named as Ivan Antonov but there were lots of performances to note.
I hope to have some more feedback on the tournament in the next week or so as well as a look forward to the U20 World Champions in Dumfries.