Ryan Murray, a top prospect for the 2012 Entry Draft, has been named captain for Canada's entry at the 2011 IIHF World Under-18 Championship, which is being held in Crimmitschau and Dresden, Germany.
Murray, a defenseman for the Western Hockey League's Everett Silvertips, was third on his team with 46 points in 70 games. He was scoreless in six games at last year's tournament as Canada finished seventh.
Sarnia Sting right wing Brett Ritchie and London Knights defenseman Scott Harrington will serve as alternate captains. Ritchie is No. 36 on NHL Central Scouting's final ranking of the top North American skaters available for the 2011 Entry Draft, while Harrington is No. 98.
Other top draft prospects playing for Canada are Kitchener Rangers defenseman Ryan Murphy, No. 9 on Central Scouting's final ranking; Prince Albert Raiders center Mark McNeill, No. 14 on Central Scouting's list; and Barrie Colts center Mark Scheifele, ranked No. 16.
The team will be coached by the Calgary Hitmen's Mike Williamson, with Barrie Colts coach Dale Hawerchuk and Swift Current Broncos coach Mark Lamb serving as assistants.
Canada opens play in the tournament Friday against the Czech Republic. They'll also play Finland, Norway and Sweden in the preliminary round. The quarterfinals start April 21. The semifinals will be April 23, and the bronze- and gold-medal games will be April 24.
Contact Adam Kimelman at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter: @NHLAdamK