Whitehall Borough native John Gibson was named as the MVP of the Under-20 World Ice Hockey "Junior" Championships after helping to lead Team USA to a 3-1 win over Sweden in Saturday morning's gold-medal game.
Gibson, also chosen as a tournament all-star and the tourney's top goalkeeper, allowed just nine goals in almost seven full games at the junior championships, including a shutout. He finished with a goals-against average of 1.36 and .955 saves percentage.
There were other strong Pittsburgh-area ties on Team USA's roster for the junior championships, as well. Forward and Upper St. Clair Township native Vincent Trocheck had three goals and three assists in seven games, including a goal and an assist in the final. Forward and Washington, PA, native Riley Barber also notched three goals and three assists in seven games, and forward and one-time Coraopolis Borough resident J.T. Miller tallied two goals and a team-high seven assists in seven games.
The game was broadcast live on the NHL Network, starting at 8 a.m. Eastern time. It will be re-broadcast on the same channel at 8 p.m.
The United States rebounded from a 2-2 preliminary round to win three straight games in the tournament playoffs. The 6-foot-3, 222-pound Gibson was in net for all three of those games, allowing two goals.
Gibson also helped Team USA to win gold at the 2011 world under-18 championships by posting back-to-back overtime wins against Canada and Sweden. He was named as the best goaltender of that tournament, as well.
Gibson is formerly a student of Whitehall's St. Gabriel of the Sorrowful Virgin and Baldwin High schools.
Gibson also picked up two rare assists as a goalkeeper.
In the final, Gibson stopped 26 of 27 shots. Trocheck's goal was an empty-netter that came with 16 seconds left. Trocheck's assist came on the game-winning goal