It wasn't the dream ending that Josh Brook was hoping for, but the Moose Jaw Warriors captain was able to learn a lot over the past month with Team Canada.
Brook returned to the ice with the Warriors over the weekend after Canada lost out in the quarterfinals to Finland at the 2019 IIHF World Junior Championship last week.
"It was an awesome experience and a dream come true to play in the tournament with Canada, it was all I would have wanted but I just wish that we would have won," said Brook.
Canada heads into the tournament every year with gold medal aspirations and to fall short was no doubt disappointing for Brook and his teammates.
A lucky bounce in the final minute tied the game for Finland and then a broken stick led to an odd-man rush that ended with the winning goal in overtime to finish off Canada's shot at a gold medal, which Finland would go on to win, beating the United States, 3-2, in the final on Saturday.
"I feel like we played pretty well [in the quarter-final], it was just a couple of tough bounces and that's the way it goes sometimes in hockey," said Brook.
Brook added there is plenty that he can learn from that loss and the experience as a whole at the World Juniors, "Don’t take one-second in the game for granted, whatever it is, do it hard and don’t have any regrets," he said.
"I’m going to try to use it as motivation, but also try to forget about it and move on, remember the experience but all the bad stuff, forget about it."
Team Canada played all four round-robin games as well as their quarter-final game against Finland in front of a packed house at Rogers Arena in Vancouver.
Brook said the atmosphere for those games and around the tournament was unbelievable to be a part of, "Every game got bigger as you went on, it just kept ramping up and the fans got louder and louder," he said.
"[The New Year's Eve game] was wild, the rink was jam-packed, it was so loud and great energy in the rink… [The quarter-final] was unbelievable, you couldn't even hear the guy talking to next to you on the bench and it was a great experience."
Brook finished with two assists and was plus-five in five games for Canada. The Montreal Canadiens prospect felt that he played his role well during the tournament.
"They wanted me to be a two-way defenceman, just play well at both ends of the ice, worry about defence first and try to help on offence whenever I could, but focus on not getting scored on, and I felt I did that," said Brook.
With his World Junior experience in the books, Brook's focus is now back with the Warriors. He posted three assists in his first game back last Friday in Prince Albert.
"I'm glad to be back with the guys here," said Brook.
Brook and the Warriors have three home games this week, starting with the Calgary Hitmen coming to Mosaic Place on Wednesday.