|Left: John Gibson Right: JT Miller|
The final 23-man roster that will represent the United States at the 2013 World Junior Championship Dec. 26, 2012-Jan. 5, 2013 in Ufa, Russia will be announced on Dec. 23.
All four players played for the Pittsburgh Hornets elite travel program.
Miller and Gibson join defenseman Jacob Trouba as the three lone returnees from last year’s WJC squad that competed in Edmonton and Alberta, Canada. Miller posted four points (2G-2A) and a plus-3 rating in six games at the WJC, while Gibson stopped 23 of 27 shots in his only start.
Gibson, 19, ranks among the top netminders for the Kitchener Rangers of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) this season despite being currently sidelined with a hip flexor injury – placing second in both goals-against average (2.20) and save percentage (.932) while posting a 12-6 record in 18 games. Gibson was the second goaltender selected in the 2011 NHL Draft when the Anaheim Ducks chose him in the second round (39th overall).
Miller, 19, is in his first professional season with the Connecticut Whale of the American Hockey League (AHL) – the top minor-league affiliate of the New York Rangers. In 20 games this season, Miller, who became the highest-drafted player from Pittsburgh when the Rangers took him with the 15th-overall selection of the 2011 NHL Draft, has tallied eight points (2G-6A).
Trocheck, 19, is on pace to establish career highs for the fourth straight season for the Saginaw Spirit of the OHL. The third-round (64th overall) selection of the Florida Panthers in the 2011 NHL Draft currently ranks sixth in the OHL scoring race with team-leading totals of 21 goals, 24 assists and 45 points in 30 games.
Barber, 18, has played a starring role as a freshman for the No. 3-ranked Miami (Ohio) Redhawks. The son of former NHL player Don Barber, Riley currently ranks second in the Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA) – and first among newcomers – with 18 points (6G-12A) through 14 games. He was chosen by the Washington Capitals in the sixth round (167th overall) of the 2012 NHL Draft at CONSOL Energy Center.
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