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ARLINGTON, Texas -- Gregg Marshall, whose Wichita State team was the first to reach t
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ARLINGTON, Texas -- Gregg Marshall, whose Wichita State team was the first to reach the NCAA tournament undefeated in 33 years, has been selected The Associated Press coach of the year. The Shockers entered the tournament at 34-0 and as a No. 1 seed. They became the first team in NCAA mens history to win its first 35 games. They lost to Kentucky in the third round and fell short of matching Indiana in 1976 as the last unbeaten national champion. Marshall led the Shockers to a No. 2 ranking in the final poll and to the Missouri Valley Conference regular-season and tournament titles. For the fifth straight season, the Shockers won at least 25 games. Marshall received 44 votes Thursday from the same 65-member national media panel that selects the weekly Top 25. Tony Bennett of Virginia had 13 votes, Billy Donovan of Florida drew six and John Beilein of Michigan and Larry Brown of SMU one each. Voting ended on Selection Sunday. Robbie Grossman Jersey . 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Kyle Gibson Jersey . -- The Val-dOr Foreurs made it to the Memorial Cup semifinal thanks to their workhorse goaltender and their ability to hang around like a bad cold.MONTREAL — Curtis Lazar has every reason to be smiling. The always good-humoured Ottawa Senators rookie on Monday was named captain of Canadas junior hockey team for the upcoming world championship in Toronto and Montreal. Im very honoured to have this opportunity, and Im going to take full advantage of it and go out there and play hard for my country, Lazar told reporters at a hockey charity event in Montreal. I know theres a lot of responsibility that comes along with this, but Im just going to try to take it in stride and be myself. Canadas coaching staff gave Lazar the news Monday morning, shortly after the team arrived in Montreal from Ottawa where Canada beat Sweden 5-2 in an exhibition game on Sunday. True to character, the Salmon Arm, B.C., native was grinning from ear to ear when he was told. As usual, I was smiling, said the 19-year-old, who was drafted 17th overall by the Senators in 2013. Its pretty cool. I didnt know it was coming. Anyone could have it. Im very honoured that my peers and my coaching staff think very highly of me. Im a pretty positive guy for the most part. Im always smiling and trying to keep the guys light. I like to lead by example. I really focus on little details, and I think that goes a long way. I want unity within the dressing room. Regardless of where youre from in Canada, were part of a team now. No one is bigger than the team. Lazar, who has a goal and six assists in 27 games with Ottawa this season, was loaned to Canada by the Senators last week. He is one of seven returning players from last years tournament in Malmo, Sweden, where Canada finished fourth. One year later, Lazar is thinking of redemption. I was disappointed with how we played last year and the result we got, he said, looking back on Canadas semifinal loss against Finland, and the defeat to Russia in the bronze-medal game. Second chances dont come around too often. Were fortunate to have this chance. Connor McDavid of the Erie Otters and Sam Reinhart of the Kootenay Ice will serve as alternate captains for the tournament, which officially gets underway on Dec. 26. McDavid and Reinhart also represented Canada at the 2014 junior championship and were teammates at the 2013 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 World Championship, where the Canadians won the gold medal. The 17-year-old McDavid, whoo is touted as the best forward in the upcoming 2015 NHL draft, had nothing but praise for his new captain.dddddddddddd Hes always positive, and he always has a smile on his face, McDavid said of Lazar. Nothing seems to bring him down. Hes the perfect guy for the job. The ups and downs of this tournament are pretty crazy, but he never seems to go down. Hes going to be a good captain. McDavid, who played for the first time on Sunday since breaking his right hand in November, has a blistering 51 points for the Otters in 18 games this season. Reinhart, meanwhile, played nine games with the Buffalo Sabres at the start of this season before returning to the Western Hockey League in October. To wear a letter is something special, said McDavid. But there are 22 leaders on this team — its not just three guys. The letter is special, but everyone is a leader. Head coach Benoit Groulx knows exactly what kind of player it takes to lead a team to victory. Sam, Curtis and Connor have the same qualities, said Groulx, winner of three Quebec Major Junior Hockey League championships as head coach. Theyre great young men, they want to win, theyre great hockey players, and they want to make a difference. This is what you need in your leadership group. It was an obvious choice. Although hes just 19, Lazar wants to use his world junior and NHL experience to guide some of the younger players on Canadas roster. He says he wants them to pay attention to detail, and to really enjoy the tournament. But overall, Lazar wants to win. He wants to know what it means to wear a gold medal around his neck. It would be very cool, he said. Thats one thing I want to check off my junior resume. Canada plays one more exhibition game versus Switzerland on Tuesday before their tournament opens on Boxing Day with a game against Slovakia at the Bell Centre in Montreal. Notes: The Canadians will also play Germany, Finland and the United States in the group stage. … Canadas junior team gathered at McGill Universitys McConnell Arena in Montreal on Monday to help launch The Big Play program, which aims to get kids across the country in minor hockey. … Lazar also played at the 2012 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge and with Canadas mens under-18 team. … The world junior gold medal game will be played Jan. 5 in Toronto. 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