Preliminary 2016 U.S. World Junior roster has 16 current, future NCAA players

Miami defenseman Louie Belpedio is one of eight current or future NCAA blueliners named to the preliminary U.S. World Junior team roster (photo: Bradley K. Olson).

USA Hockey unveiled Monday the 29 players selected to the preliminary roster for the 2016 U.S. National Junior Team that will compete at the IIHF World Junior Championship in Helsinki, Finland, from Dec. 26 to Jan. 5, 2016.

The players will attend training camp Dec. 14-18 at Boston University followed by an additional camp in Vierumaki, Finland, from Dec. 19-24. The final 23-man roster is expected to be named by Dec. 24.

“This is a young, talented group that has experience winning on the international level,” said USA Hockey assistant executive director of hockey operations and National Junior Team GM Jim Johannson in a statement. “The great variety and depth of talent represented by these players will make for some tough decisions, but that’s certainly a good problem to have.”

A total of 16 current or future NCAA players (table below) are among the 29 players listed with the other 13 coming from the American Hockey League, Ontario Hockey League, Western Hockey League and Swiss pro league (Auston Matthews).

Player's NamePositionSchool
Kieffer BellowsFBoston University (2016)
Anders BjorkFNotre Dame
Brock BoeserFNorth Dakota
Ryan DonatoFHarvard
Ryan HitchcockFYale
Clayton KellerFBoston University (2016)
Nick SchmaltzFNorth Dakota
Colin WhiteFBoston College
Louie BelpedioDMiami
Will BorgenDSt. Cloud State
Ryan CollinsDMinnesota
Casey FitzgeraldDBoston College
Brandon FortunatoDBoston University
Chad KrysDBoston University (2016)
Charlie McAvoyDBoston University
Zach WerenskiDMichigan

Team USA has medaled in three of the last six World Junior Championships, winning gold in 2010 and 2013, plus bronze in 2011. The U.S. placed fifth in last year’s tournament.

Ron Wilson is head coach of the team and assistant coaches for Team USA are Chris Chelios, Danton Cole and Kevin Reiter.