Gabriel Bourque Leads Canadian Assault of the Latvians

Dino MoriAnalyst IDecember 27, 2009

MONTREAL,QC - JUNE 27: Gabriel Bourque poses for a portrait after being drafted by the Nashville Predators during the second day of the 2009 NHL Entry Draft at the Bell Centre on June 27, 2009 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
Jamie Squire/Getty Images

SASKATOON - Forward Gabriel Bourque tied a team record with seven points as the Canadians opened the 2010 World Junior Hockey Championships with a 16-0 laugher against a listless Latvian squad.

Bourque, a 2009 Nashville Predator draft pick, had three goals and four assists to tie both Mike Cammalleri and Dave Andreychuk for most points in a single game by a Canadian junior.  

Maple Leafs prospect Nazim Kadri, Jordan Eberle, Luke Adam, Brandon Kozun and Patrice Cormier each scored twice for the Canadians, while Travis Harmonic, Adam Henrique, Brandon McMillian added singles.

Canada outshot Latvia, 66-10.

Jake Allen earned the shutout in net for the Canadians, but his workload paled in comparison to that of both Raimond Ermics and Janis Kalnins of Latvia.  Ermics was pulled at 9:09 of the first period in favour of Kalnins. 

In other Group A action, the United States came back from an early two-goal deficit to beat Slovakia, 7-3.  USA's Tyler Johnson was assessed a game misconduct for high sticking Slovakian Martin Stajnoch two minutes into the game.  But replays showed the high-stick was delivered by Johnson's teammate Jason Zucker. 

Derek Stepan had a goal and two assists for the Americans in the win.

In Group B play, Sweden bounced the Czech Republic 10-1.  Magnus Paajarvi-Svensson recorded a goal and four helpers for the Swedes.  And, Russia upended Austria 6-2 as Yevgeni Kuznetsov had two goals for the Soviets.

Today in preliminary round action,  Switzerland and Finland will play their first games of the tournament. Switzerland gets going against the US, while Finland faces the Czech Republic.

Elsewhere, Austria will play Sweden and Latvia will tangle with Slovakia.

Next action for Team Canada is tomorrow (Monday) against Switzerland.