Blenkhorn, Team Canada golden

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Dave Mathieson
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Win Standing Amputee World Hockey Championship

Blenkhorn, Team Canada golden

AMHERST - Canada has once again schooled the world in the game of hockey and this time Amherst's Brad Blenkhorn was one of the athletes offering up the lesson.
As a rookie for Team Canada at the Standing Amputee World Championships in Marlborough, Massachusetts last week, the 27-year-old winger and his teammates took no prisoners and showed the world how to get the job done.
"In the gold medal game the U.S. fans were hostile and so were ours. It was a great atmosphere really," Blenkhorn said.
The Canadians took it to the Americans and won the gold medal game by a score of 6-2.
"It was 3-2 going into the third period," Blenkhorn said. "Then we scored three more goals."
Before the goal medal game it was the Team Finland and Team Latvia who had to withstand the punishment dished out by Team Canada.
Both teams lost to Canada by a score of 9-0.
After that they faced the U.S. in the preliminary round where they won by a score of 4-1.
"It was 2-1 going into the third," Blenkhorn said. "So our games against the U.S. were pretty intense."
The most memorable moment for Blenkhorn was the gold medal presentation.
"It was a good feeling to win the gold," Blenkhorn said. "Singing the national anthem with your teammates at the end was probably the best feeling. We're just like a big family."
Blenkhorn, who lost his right leg above the ankle in an accident when he was 18 months old, will train over the summer in preparation for Team Canada's training camp in November.
There will not be a world championship next year but there will be a senior's tournament.
"Last year we had a tournament in May in Winnipeg, so we'll probably do something like that next year," Blenkhorn said.
Canada will host the world championship two years from now.
One hope is they can host the tournament in Vancouver during the 2010 Olympics, but Blenkhorn said there are also rumours flying around that it might be held in Halifax.
Wherever the tournament is held, Blenkhorn hopes Canada does a better job of hosting the tournament than the Americans did.
"There was a lot going on down there for them to host a true world championship tournament," Blenkhorn said.
The medals they were given were a bit of a disappointment.
"They weren't so good. I mean, I had better medals in peewee," Blenkhorn said. "But we're going to get rings made up, so that will make it a little more special."
Canada has won gold in all four world championships and Blenkhorn said they accomplished their main goal.
"We are now four-time world champions. We wanted to keep the undefeated streak alive and we did that. That's really what it was all about."

dmathieson@amherstdaily.com

Organizations: Team Canada, Team Finland

Geographic location: Canada, U.S., Marlborough, Massachusetts Winnipeg Vancouver Halifax

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