The Notre Dame Hounds hadn't won a national midget championship in 23 years, and on Sunday they were determined not to make it 24.
Christopher Gibson made 43 saves as the Hounds shut out the Calgary Buffaloes 4-0 to win gold at the Telus Cup in Selkirk, Man. Notre Dame last won gold in 1986, and hadn't appeared in the final since 1987.
Drew George scored twice and Bryce Milson and Ben Gamache added one each for Notre Dame, which have now won three national titles all-time, trailing only the Regina Pat Canadians with four.
Earlier Sunday, the Rousseau Sports de Laval-Bourassa defeated the Winnipeg Thrashers 5-2 in the bronze medal game.
Coming off a semifinal victory over Laval-Bourassa on Saturday in which they needed two goals in the final six minutes to earn the victory, the Hounds struck early Sunday, as George beat Calgary netminder Sam Brittain just 1:40 after the opening faceoff.
Gibson leads the way
George set up Milson for Notre Dame's second goal 6:04 later, and the Hounds used Gibson's goaltending to take them the rest of the way.
George notched his second of the game 59 seconds into the third period and Gamanche rounded out the scoring 10 minutes later. Gibson was at his best in the third period, making 18 saves as the Buffaloes tried to get back into the game. Overall, Notre Dame out-shot the Buffaloes 44-43.
In the bronze medal match, Alexandre Lavoie scored twice and Kevin Fiset, Antony Courcelles and Thomas Martin each added one for the Rousseau Sports de Laval-Bourassa.
Laval-Bourassa have now won a medal at each of the last 12 national championships, including bronze the last five years. Michael Hay and Cam Hildebrand scored for the Thrashers, who failed in their attempt to win back-to-back medals — they claimed silver last year in Arnprior, Ont.
Simon Giroux made 43 saves to earn the victory for Laval-Bourassa, which won its first medal in two trips to the national championship.