Gostisbehere, Team USA win gold medal at World Junior Hockey Championships (update with Gostisbehere quotes)
Shayne Gostisbehere and Team USA have struck gold in the World Junior Hockey Championships in Ufa, Russia.
Rocco Grimaldi scored twice, leading Team USA to a 3-1 victory over Sweden in the WJC gold medal game.
It is the third gold medal for team USA. It won in 2004 and 2010.
Gostisbehere, a Union sophomore defenseman, is the second Capital Region college hockey player to win gold. Former RPI player Jerry D'Amigo was on Team USA in 2010.
"I couldn't be more proud of our players and staff," Team USA coach Phil Housley said. "And I'm also really happy for hockey fans in our country. This was a total team effort throughout the tournament. It was a very difficult challenge tonight against an excellent Swedish team. We had a terrific experience here and I'd like to thank the Russian Hockey Federation for being an excellent host."
Gostisbehere finished the tournament with a goal and an assist in six games. He had a plus-4 rating.
"It doesn’t seem real right now," Gostisbehere said. "We've been here for a long time. lt's finally nice that we’re going to leave here with the gold medal. It means we did what we had to do. It hasn’t sunk in yet. It’s really crazy right now."
Even after falling behind, Gostisbehere was confident that Team USA would take home the gold.
"When we went down, 1-0, we had no doubt we were going to win the game," Gostisbehere said. "We just turned it around and put two in. Just watching that clock tick down, it felt like forever. You can’t words in to describe what just happened."
Union coach Rick Bennett, whose team plays at Lake Superior State tonight at 7:05, is very happy for Gostisbehere.
"That was the best news I had heard today," Bennett said. "It gives us a little life tonight, knowing that one of our teammates has a gold medal. For Shayne, for a guy coming from Florida, I'm sure that growing up, [winning gold] was probably the furthest thing from his mind. But when you put your mind to something and pay the price, good things will happen.
"It's nice to see a player from Union's program has a gold medal. It's just a great, great thing for our whole program."
Several of Gostisbehere's Union teammates tweeted their congratulations.
Defenseman Ryan Forgaard: "Congrats to the US team winning the world juniors. I can't wait to see that #gold."
Forward Kevin Sullivan: "Congrats to the US team winning the world juniors. [Shayne], I can't wait to see that #gold."
Goalie Colin Stevens simply stated: "#USA #gold."
Former teammate Trevor Mingoia tweeted: "Congrats to the best roomie in history on bringing home the gold medal."