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International Series: Team Lithuania Junior Hockey News

Published: Monday, 23 Apr 2012  
By: Matt Prosser


Vilnius, Lithuania - Moments seem to capture more than words could ever describe in a proper sentence. Such instances could include the most joyous times in your life like the day your first child is born or something along those lines. Other times though can be some of the most arduous, and for the Lithuanian National Junior team, no moment was more difficult than when Ukraine scored the game winning goal in overtime at the 2012 IIHF U20 World Junior Ice Hockey Division II Group A Championship Game. Being one goal away from a promotion to a higher level can be disappointing, but something that the Lithuanian Ice Hockey Federation can count on is continuity. They brought one of the youngest teams to the WJHC and has a chance at breaking through to the DIB level in 2013.

Team Lithuania:

IIHF Record: 38-40-1

Division: II

Group: A

2012 Final Results: Division II Group A Second Place with 3-0-2 record

Head Coach: Andrejus Jadkauskas (LTU)

In Lithuania, hockey hit the restart button about twenty years ago after the fall of the Soviet Union when the International Ice Hockey Federation accepted the country's re-entry. Officially the federation has existed since 1938 but once the USSR annexed the country in 1940, it dissolved. However upon returning, the country has seen little improvement at the junior level mostly because players born during Soviet reign could choose to suit up for any of the newly formed countries; since Russia had more of a history, most good players went there.

However, great National pride struck when arguably the greatest Lithuanian player in NHL history changed his allegiance from Russia to Lithuania. After the 2004 World Cup of Hockey, Dainius Zubrus announce he would play for his home country because they needed him more than the mother land. Since then, there has been a slight trickle effect and the Lithuanian junior team has slowly been building momentum.

Coming up in 2013 there is a good chance this country will find its way back into the graces of Division I play but they are going to have to get past some tough competition. However, if any team is built to take the group it is Lithuania. With more players age-eligible to return than any other country, you'd be hard pressed to find one with better team chemistry. Look for a solid performance especially from Aimas Fiscevas who scored 8 points in 2012, just one behind the leaders.

For previous team articles, click the links below

Hungary: http://www.juniorhockey.com/news/news_detail.php?news_id=75413

Spain: http://www.juniorhockey.com/news/news_detail.php?news_id=75363

Netherlands: http://www.juniorhockey.com/news/news_detail.php?news_id=75309

Romania: http://www.juniorhockey.com/news/news_detail.php?news_id=75295

Division II Group B: http://www.juniorhockey.com/news/news_detail.php?news_id=75279

Estonia: http://www.juniorhockey.com/news/news_detail.php?news_id=75257

Serbia: http://www.juniorhockey.com/news/news_detail.php?news_id=75227

Belgium: http://www.juniorhockey.com/news/news_detail.php?news_id=75213

Australia: http://www.juniorhockey.com/news/news_detail.php?news_id=75194

Iceland: http://www.juniorhockey.com/news/news_detail.php?news_id=75154

Division III: http://www.juniorhockey.com/news/news_detail.php?news_id=75142

Bulgaria: http://www.juniorhockey.com/news/news_detail.php?news_id=75132

New Zealand: http://www.juniorhockey.com/news/news_detail.php?news_id=75122

China: http://www.juniorhockey.com/news/news_detail.php?news_id=75097

Turkey: http://www.juniorhockey.com/news/news_detail.php?news_id=75086

Mexico: http://www.juniorhockey.com/news/news_detail.php?news_id=75075

Intro to 2013 WJHC: http://www.juniorhockey.com/news/news_detail.php?news_id=75064

Matt Prosser, Featured Writer for JuniorHockey.com. Owner of Fifty8 Productions and freelance writer from the San Francisco Bay Area. Voice of California State University, Sacramento Hockey and host of The Sports Cycle with Matt Prosser on KSSU1580 Sacramento. For comments and writing ventures e-mail Matt@Fifty8productions.com. Follow on Twitter @MattProsser58 or visit www.kssusportsycle.com.




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