O'MARRA AND CANADA WIN GOLD
Ryan O'Marra, the Islanders' 2005 first-round draft pick, and the Canadian Junior National Team captured their third gold medal in a row at the World Junior Championships, topping Russia 4-2 in this year's final, held in Sweden. This is O'Marra's second gold medal at the World Juniors. The former 15th overall selection earned an assist on the first goal of the game to help Canada win all six games at the 2007 World Junior Championship.
The Islanders' most recent first-round pick, Kyle Okposo, took home his first World Junior Championship medal, when the United States defeated host Sweden, 2-1, in the Bronze Medal game.
Canada breezed into the medal round, winning all four of their preliminary round games, to earn an automatic berth into the semifinals. There, O'Marra faced-off against Okposo and the United States, after defeating them earlier, in the tournament. Unlike the 6-3 preliminary round win by Canada, the semifinal game was much tighter. Canada came out on top in the seventh round of a shootout, 2-1, to earn a spot in the final against Russia. Okposo's Team USA played for the bronze against Sweden, who fell to Russia in the semifinals.
O'Marra tallied two assists in the tournament, but Islanders scouts said that he played better than his stats indicate. His line was considered one of the most complete lines of the tournament. Meanwhile, Okposo notched one assist, while creating a multitude of scoring chances on one of the team's top two lines.
O'Marra returns to the Saginaw Spirit of the OHL, where his team is currently second in the West Division. Okposo's Minnesota Golden Gophers, of the WCHA, are on a 20-game unbeaten streak, and ranked first in the nation.