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Campbell to have chance at third WJC medal

Three-time Team USA gold medalist Jack Campbell on Friday was named one of four goaltenders invited to USA Hockey's National Junior Evaluation Camp, to be held in Lake Placid, N.Y., in Aug 6-13.

Campbell, who won gold medals at the 2009 and 2010 World Under-18 Championships and the 2010 World Junior Championship, will be joined by Andy Iles, John Gibson and Mac Carruth at the camp. They'll join the 40 skaters who will attend the camp.

The inclusion of Campbell and Iles makes a total of nine players from the 2011 WJC team that won bronze in Buffalo invited to the Lake Placid camp -- the two goalies, defensemen Justin Faulk, Derek Forbort and Jonathan Merrill, and forwards Nick Bjugstad, Charlie Coyle, Emerson Etem and Jason Zucker. Zucker was Campbell's teammate on the gold medal-winning 2010 WJC team.

Dean Blais, who coached Campbell and Zucker in Saskatoon, will coach the U.S. at the 2012 WJC, which will be held Dec. 26 to Jan. 5, 2012 in Calgary and Edmonton. His assistants will be Scott Sandelin, Tom Ward and Joe Exter. Pittsburgh Penguins coach Dan Bylsma and New York Rangers assistant coach Mike Sullivan also will be part of the camp coaching staff.

Campbell, who was named the top goaltender of the 2011 WJC, will be attending his third evaluation camp, making him the most experienced player in Lake Placid.  Drafted by the Dallas Stars with the 11th pick, he went 24-14-4 with a 3.80 goals-against average and .884 save percentage in 45 games in his first season with the Windsor Spitfires of the Ontario Hockey League.

Iles went 8-7-2 with a 2.49 GAA and .914 save percentage as a freshman at Cornell in 2010. He's eligible for the 2011 Entry Draft after not being picked last year. Carruth, a seventh-round pick of the Chicago Blackhawks last year, went 31-13-1 with a 3.08 GAA and .913 save percentage with the Portland Winterhawks of the Western Hockey League.

Gibson, meanwhile, is NHL Central Scouting's No. 1-rated North American goalie eligible for the 2011 Entry Draft.

Gibson, bound for the University of Michigan, fashioned an impressive 24-11-3 mark with a 2.55 GAA and .921 save percentage in 40 games with the U.S. National Team Development Program. He also backstopped the U.S. to a third straight gold medal at the World Under-18 Championship in Germany in April. He made 28 saves in 4-3 win against Sweden in the gold-medal game. He was honored with the tournament's Best Goaltender award after going 6-0-0 with a 2.34 GAA and .926 save percentage.

Of the 44 players invited to camp, 19 are eligible for the 2011 Entry Draft. That list includes six players ranked among NHL Central Scouting's top 30 North American skaters for next month's draft -- Northeastern University defenseman Jamieson Oleksiak (No. 13), Saginaw Spirit forward Brandon Saad (19), U.S. National Team Development Program forward Tyler Biggs (22), USNTDP center Jonathan Miller (23) USNTDP defenseman Connor Murphy (25), and Ottawa 67s center Shane Prince (26).

Fifteen NHL teams will have at least one prospect at the camp, topped by four from the Chicago Blackhawks -- Carruth, defensemen Justin Holl and Stephen Johns, and forward Kevin Hayes. The Carolina Hurricanes, Florida Panthers, Pittsburgh Penguins and Los Angeles Kings will have two players each there.

The two youngest players invited were Fargo Force defenseman Brian Cooper, who is eligible for the 2012 Draft, and USNTDP defenseman Seth Jones, who won't be draft-eligible until 2013.

This year's camp will feature intrasquad scrimmages, and after the roster is reduced, there will be exhibition games against Finland and Sweden.

Follow Mike Morreale on Twitter at: @mike_morreale