If my math is correct, UND forward Rocco Grimaldi becomes the 35th UND hockey player to be selected to play for his country in the WJC.
GRAND FORKS, N.D. - University of North Dakota freshman forward Rocco Grimaldi has earned a roster spot on the United States team that will compete at the 2013 International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) World Junior Championship Dec. 26-Jan. 5 in Ufa, Russia.
The roster was announced this morning by USA Hockey.
Grimaldi has registered seven goals and nine assists in 18 games this season for UND, tying him for second in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) rookie scoring race. The Rossmoor, Calif., native has played in every game this season after missing all but four games last season due to injury.
The preseason WCHA Rookie of the Year and a second-round draft pick (33rd overall) of the Florida Panthers in 2011, Grimaldi has extensive USA Hockey experience. Prior to coming to UND, Grimaldi spent the previous two seasons with the U.S. National Team Development Program (NTDP), amassing 136 points in 120 games. He helped lead the United States to back-to-back gold medals at the 2011 and 2010 IIHF World Under-18 Championships.
Grimaldi also was a part of the U.S. Under-18 Team that won the 2010 Four Nations Cup in Sundsvall, Sweden, where he was named the tournament's top forward with six points in three games.
The UND men's hockey program has now had 47 participants in the prestigious World Junior Hockey Championship dating back to 1979, representing the United States, Canada and Slovakia. Grimaldi is the 33rd UND product to play for the U.S.
UND at the World Junior Championship1979: Dave Christian (USA), Tim Mishler (USA), Mike Stone (USA)1981: Mark Huglen (USA), Craig Ludwig (USA)1982: Jon Casey (USA), Troy Murray (CAN), James Patrick (CAN)1983: James Patrick (CAN), Gord Sherven (CAN), Rick Zombo (USA)1984: Scott Sandelin (USA)1985: Brad Berry (CAN)1987: Lee Davidson (USA)1988: Lee Davidson (USA)1989: Geoff Smith (CAN)1990: Jason Herter (CAN)1991: Chris Gotziaman (USA), Greg Johnson (CAN)1992: Brad Bombardir (CAN), Marty Schriner (USA)1994: Toby Kvalevog (USA)1995: Landon Wilson (USA)2001: David Hale (USA)2003: Matt Greene (USA), Matt Jones (USA), Zach Parise (USA), Rastislav Spirko (Slovakia)2004: Brady Murray (USA), Zach Parise (USA), Rastislav Spirko (Slovakia), Drew Stafford (USA)2005: Brian Lee (USA), Drew Stafford (USA)2006: Taylor Chorney (USA), Brian Lee (USA), T.J. Oshie (USA), Jonathan Toews (CAN)2007: Taylor Chorney (USA), Brian Lee (USA), Jonathan Toews (CAN)2009: Danny Kristo (USA)2010: Danny Kristo (USA)2011: Derek Forbort (USA), Brock Nelson (USA)2012: Derek Forbort (USA)2013: Rocco Grimaldi (USA)
For more information, visit www.usahockey.com.