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Irish Duo Named To 2020 U.S. National Junior Team

Jake Pivonka & Spencer Stastney will represent Team USA

OSTRAVA, Czech Republic – Current Notre Dame players Jake Pivonka and Spencer Stastney will compete on the 2020 U.S. National Junior Team in the upcoming International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championship, USA Hockey announced this afternoon (Dec. 23).

With Pivonka and Stastney, 22 Notre Dame players have now taken part in the IIHF World Junior Championships.

The tournament will be played from Dec. 26, 2019 – Jan. 5, 2020, in Ostrava and Trinec, Czech Republic. Team USA opens play on Thursday, December 26 against Canada at 1 p.m. ET at Ostravar Arena. All U.S. contests will be televised live on NHL Network. For Team USA’s complete schedule, click here.

In addition, Notre Dame’s director of hockey operations, Nick Siergiej, is serving in a similar role for Team USA at the competition. Siergiej also served in that capacity in 2016 when Team USA earned bronze in Helsinki, Finland.

Pivonka, a sophomore forward, has played in 17 games this season, totaling four goals and four assists for eight points. Last season as a freshman, he played 39 games and finished the year with two goals and eight assists for 10 points, with both of his goals proving to be game winners. A native of Naperville, Illinois, Pivonka skated for the U.S. National Team Development Program from 2016-18 before joining the Irish. He was a fourth round draft choice (103rd overall) by the New York Islanders in the 2018 NHL Draft. 

Stastney, a sophomore defenseman, has played in all 18 games this season while scoring two goals and adding six assists for eight points. As a freshman, Stastney played in 39 games, scoring a goal and adding three assists for four points. His goal gave the Irish a 1-0 lead in the 2019 Big Ten Championship game, which helped Notre Dame secure an eventual 3-2 win over Penn State (March 24). Prior to joining the Irish the Mequon, Wisconsin, native played for the U.S. National Team Development Program from 2016-18. He was a fifth round draft choice (131st overall) by the Nashville Predators in the 2018 NHL Draft.  

Notre Dame At The World Junior Hockey Championship

  • Current Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Andrew Peeke was the last Irish player to make Team USA’s World Junior Championship roster (2018). 
  • Peeke was also the last Irish player to earn a medal at the event by helping the U.S. secure bronze in Buffalo in 2018.
  • Dating back to 1997, 22 Notre Dame players have now taken part in the IIHF World Junior Championships.
  • Notre Dame’s other medalists include Anders Bjork (bronze in 2016), Mario Lucia (gold in 2013), Kyle Palmieri (gold in 2010 and bronze in 2011), Kyle Lawson (bronze in 2007) and Ben Simon (silver in 1997).

2020 IIHF World Junior Hockey Championship Coverage

  • In its 12th year televising the tournament, NHL Network will provide extensive coverage, including live game telecasts plus comprehensive previews, highlights, analysis and interviews within its studio programming and via @NHLNetwork on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

Up Next

  • Notre Dame is in the midst of semester break and will return to action with a home-and-home non-conference series against Western Michigan Jan. 3 and 5.
  • Game one of that series will take place at 7 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 3 at the Compton Family Ice Arena (Tickets).
  • Game two will then be played at 5 p.m. in Kalamazoo, Michigan on Sunday, Jan. 5.