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U.S. Men's National Team Takes Down Germany, 5-4, in Final Preliminary Round Game

05/20/2014, 7:45am EDT
By USAHockey.com

MINSK, Belarus – Johnny Gaudreau (Carneys Point, N.J./Boston College/Calgary Flames) had a goal and three assists and Justin Abdelkader (Muskegon, Mich./Michigan State University/Detroit Red Wings) scored twice, including the game winner in the third period, to give the U.S. Men’s National Team a 5-4 victory over Germany in its final preliminary-round game of the 2014 International Ice Hockey Federation Men’s World Championship here today.

“I’m glad that we were able to find the points that we needed to possibly raise our seeding for the quarterfinals,” said Peter Laviolette, head coach of the 2014 U.S. Men’s National Team. “We knew that this was going to be a tough match for us today. We’re looking forward to moving on from here.”

Following a scoreless first period, Abdelkader struck on a shot from the side of the net just 1:44 into the middle frame to give the United States a 1-0 lead. Gaudreau created the play low in the offensive zone by shaking a German defender before sending a no-look pass to Abdelkader that he quickly fired past goaltender Danny Aus den Birken.

Team Germany answered 1:48 later with a goal on a rush, but Drew Shore (Denver, Colo./University of Denver/Florida Panthers) put the U.S. back in front with a shorthanded marker at 7:18. Team USA created a turnover just inside its defensive blue line and Jeff Petry (Ann Arbor, Mich./Michigan State University/Edmonton Oilers) sent an outlet pass to Shore in the neutral zone. Shore raced down the left wing, made a nifty move around a German defenseman and slid the puck through Aus den Birken’s legs to make it 2-1 USA.

A Germany power-play marker at 10:29 pulled the game back to even before Team USA answered with a power-play goal of its own at 12:53 to jump ahead, 3-2. Gaudreau picked up the puck at the right circle, turned to his forehand and feathered a cross-ice pass to Matt Donovan (Edmond, Okla./University of Denver/N.Y. Islanders). Donovan one-timed the pass into the net for his second goal of the tournament.

An odd-man rush allowed Germany to tie it at 3-3 just 2:20 later, setting the stage for the United States’ third-period heroics.

Gaudreau scored at 2:24 of the third frame to put Team USA up, 4-3. With the U.S. on the man advantage, Gaudreau used a quick toe drag to pull the puck between two German defenders. Once he regained complete control of the puck, he fired a shot high off the in-net camera to put Team USA up for good.

Abdelkader buried another pinpoint Gaudreau feed in front with 4:16 remaining in the contest to give the U.S. a 5-3 cushion.

A German power-play goal with 1:57 to play cut the lead to 5-4, but the U.S. snuffed out Germany's late efforts to tie the game.

Goaltender Tim Thomas (Flint, Mich./University of Vermont/Dallas Stars) started his seventh straight game of the tournament and turned aside 22 shots in the victory.

The U.S. Men’s National Team (4-1-0-2) will next play in the quarterfinals Thursday (May 22). Team USA’s opponent and game time will be announced later today.


DateĀ  OpponentĀ  Result
Fri., May 9 Belarus W, 6-1
Sat., May 10 Switzerland W, 3-2
Mon., May 12 Russia L, 1-6
Thu., May 15 Latvia L, 5-6
Fri., May 16 Kazakhstan W, 4-3 (OT)
Sun., May 18 Finland W, 3-1
Tue., May 20 Germany W, 5-4
Thu., May 22 Czech Republic
(Quarterfinals)
L, 3-4

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HELSINKI, Finland - Kyle Palmieri (Smithtown, N.Y./Anaheim Ducks/University of Notre Dame) and Bobby Ryan (Cherry Hill, N.J./Anaheim Ducks) each scored for Team USA, but Finland's Jesse Jonesuu tallied the game-winning goal with nine seconds remaining in regulation, as the U.S. Men's National Team fell to Finland, 3-2, in the quarterfinals of the 2012 International Ice Hockey Federation Men's World Championship at Hartwall Arena.

Team USA won six of its eight games in the tournament and officially finished with a record of 4-2-0-2 (W-OTW-OTL-L). The U.S. will finish sixth in the final standings if Sweden beats the Czech Republic in the final quarterfinal game tonight in Stockholm or seventh if the Czech Republic wins.

"We knew it would be a tough game," saidScott Gordon, head coach of Team USA. "We battled and certainly had our chances, but tonight they were just a little bit better than us. In the end, I liked our group and thought they represented our country extremely well."

After a scoreless first period, Finland opened the scoring at 13:27 of the second period. But the U.S. responded 21 seconds later when Jeff Petry (Ann Arbor, Mich./Edmonton Oilers/Michigan State University) found Palmieri streaking through the slot. Palmieri redirected the pass into the back of the net to tie the game and send the teams into the second intermission tied 1-1.

Ryan put home a rebound of a Justin Faulk (South St. Paul, Minn./Carolina Hurricanes/University of Minnesota Duluth) shot from the point to stake the U.S. to a 2-1 lead just 1:39 into the third period. The U.S. maintained its lead until Mikko Koivu had a puck glance off his skate and past Jimmy Howard (Syracuse, N.Y./Detroit Red Wings/University of Maine) with 6:58 left in regulation to tie the game. Joensuu recorded his second goal of the game from the side of the net with nine seconds remaining to give Finland the victory.

Howard, who was named Team USA's Player of the Game, made 28 saves, while Petri Vehanen had 24 stops for Finland.

NOTES: Team USA's Best Three Players of the Tournament were Jimmy Howard, Paul Stastny and Justin Faulk ... Justin Faulk led all Team USA defensemen with eight points (4-4) in the tournament. He also paced the team with a plus-nine rating ... Team USA didn't have a power-play opportunity on the night, while Finland went 0-for-1 with the man advantage ... Max Pacioretty's 12 points (2-10) were the most points of any U.S. player in the IIHF Men's World Championship since at least 1975 ... Defenseman Jack Johnsonwas the captain of Team USA. The alternate captains were forwards Jim Slater and Nate Thompson ... Scott Gordon was the head coach of the 2012 U.S. Men's National Team. Greg Cronin and David Quinn served as assistant coaches ... The 2012 U.S. Men’s National Team was under the direction of the U.S. Men’s National Team Advisory Group, led by Jim Johannson, assistant executive director of hockey operations for USA Hockey. Other members include NHL general managers Stan Bowman (Chicago), Brian Burke (Toronto), Paul Holmgren (Philadelphia), Dean Lombardi (Los Angeles), David Poile (Nashville), Ray Shero (Pittsburgh) and Dale Tallon (Florida) and Pittsburgh Penguins pro scout Don Waddell ... USA Hockey's international council, chaired by Tony Rossi, vice president of USA Hockey, has oversight responsibilities for all U.S. national teams ... NBC Sports televised all Team USA games in the 2012 IIHF Men's World Championship. 

GAME SUMMARY

Scoring By Period

USA 0- 1- 1- 2
FIN 0- 1- 2- 3

First Period – Scoring: None. Penalties: None.

Second Period – Scoring: 1, FIN, Joensuu (Pihlstrom, Kukkonen), 13:27; 2, USA, Palmieri (Petry, Crabb), 13:48. Penalties: USA, Pacioretty (hooking), 7:35.

Third Period – Scoring: 3, USA, Ryan (Faulk, Smith), 1:39; FIN, Koivu (Jokinen, Filppula), 13:02; 5, FIN, Joensuu (Kontiola), 19:51. Penalties: None.

Shots by Period 1 2 3 Total
USA 10 9 7 26
FIN 7 10 14 31
         
Goaltenders (SH/SV)  1 2 3 Total
USA, Howard, 59:49 7/7 10/9 14/12 31/28
FIN, Vehanen, 60:00 10/10 9/8 7/6 26/24

Power Play: USA 0-0; FIN 0-1
Penalties: USA 1-2; FIN 0-0

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