Chiefs Star Yamamoto Named To USA U-18 Team - SWX Right Now-Sports for Spokane, CdA, Tri-Cities, WA

Chiefs Star Yamamoto Named To USA U-18 Team

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Kailer Yamamoto will represent Team USA at the U-18 level in August. (Photo: Chiefs) Kailer Yamamoto will represent Team USA at the U-18 level in August. (Photo: Chiefs)
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by Chiefs Media Relations

SPOKANE, Wash. – The Spokane Chiefs, in concurrence with USA Hockey, announced today that forward Kailer Yamamoto has been chosen for the 2015 U.S. Under-18 Select Team that will compete Aug. 10-15 at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament in Breclav, Czech Republic and Piestany, Slovakia.

A 17-year-old, 5-foot-8 forward from Spokane, Yamamoto scored 23 goals and 34 assists for 57 points with the Chiefs last season, marking the third-most points scored by a 16-year-old in franchise history. He added two goals and three assists in six playoff games and was named the 2014-15 WHL Western Conference Rookie of the Year.

“Kailer has another fantastic opportunity with USA Hockey earning a spot on the U.S. U-18 Team to represent his country at the Ivan Hlinka Tournament this summer,” said Chiefs General Manager Tim Speltz. “Kailer continues to take the necessary steps with the U.S. program, which is great for his development and also for the Spokane Chiefs.

“We wish Kailer all the best at the tournament in August. Kailer is a special player and the Chiefs are very proud of our local Spokane product.”

Yamamoto, a Mead High School student, is one of 22 players chosen for the U-18 team and one of 10 chosen players who also helped the U.S. Under-17 Select Team secure second place at the 2014 Under-17 Five Nations Tournament held last year in Germany.

The Ivan Hlinka Memorial Cup is an annual event held each August for national under-18 teams from around the world. Named for one of the first Czech hockey stars, the tournament began in 1991 as a three-team showcase. Between 1997 and 2002, the format shifted to the current eight-team tournament. It was then named after Hlinka in 2007, three years after his passing.

The 2015 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Cup will include teams from Canada, Czech Republic, Finland, Russia, Slovakia, Sweden, Switzerland and the United States. The U.S. finished with a third-place showing in 2014.

The Spokane Chiefs open the 2015-16 regular season with Bud Light Opening Night on Saturday, September 26 at Spokane Arena. Ticket packages are on sale now and start as low as $110. For more information, stop by the Chiefs’ Ticket Office in-person on the southeast corner of Spokane Arena, call (509) 535-PUCK or visit www.spokanechiefs.com.

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