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Playing phone tag with Hockey Canada

It has taken two days, several text messages and e-mails, but I should soon be talking to Carter Ashton.

Hockey Canada has a couple of people in charge of setting up interviews with the players and we here at the Tri-City Herald don't rank very high on the list, but being persistent has paid off. With the success Team Canada has had, players are being requested up to 20 times a day by TV, radio and print media, according to Francis Dupont with Hockey Canada.

Team Canada did not have a game Thursday, but had practice, a team meeting and then was allowed time with family. They are back in action today against Sweden at 1 p.m. our time. For those of you with the NHL Network, the game will be televised.

The Americans have embraced their newest player and he hasn't even pulled his No. 7 jersey over his head. He has a plaque on the wall under NHL First Round Draft Picks (2009 by Tampa Bay). He also has a place on the wall with the rest of the Americans' WJC participants.

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In the U-17 tournament, Americans rookie goalie Chris Driedger took the loss Wednesday as Team Pacific defeated Team West 5-2 in the opening game for both teams. Driedger had 26 saves in the loss. Team West had Thursday off, but will be back in action Friday against the Czech Republic, which is 0-2 with losses to Team Ontario and Team Pacific.

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