For the inaugural time in his amateur hockey career, Alex Gagne (Bedford, N.H.) will wear a Team USA jersey at a major international tournament when he suits up for the United States at the 2019 Hlinka Gretzky Cup this month.
“It’s my first time,” said the 6-foot-3 defenseman from the New Hampshire Avalanche program, which is headquartered in Hooksett, N.H., just outside Manchester. “Once we get to the preliminary round, it will be an honor to put on the USA jersey and represent my country.”
Gagne previously donned red, white and blue for five games at the U.S. Select-17 Player Development Camp, from which this year’s Hlinka Gretzky U.S. roster was chosen — but this will be the first occasion he does so overseas.
Gagne got his start in hockey with the Avalanche’s “Learn to Skate” program and quickly progressed through the ranks of the organization, including three seasons with its various 16-U squads in both the Eastern Junior Elite Prospects League and the East Coast Elite League. Last year, he posted seven goals and 49 points in 49 outings with the ECEL U-16 Midget squad, and also played four games with the Avalanche’s ECEL U-18 team.