US beat Canada 3-1 in world junior hockey
TORONTO (AP) Colin White and Jordan Greenway scored early power-play goals and Joseph Woll made 25 saves to help the United States beat Canada 3-1 on Saturday for the top spot in Group B in the world junior hockey championship.
Jeremy Bracco also scored for the United States (4-0-0), set to play Switzerland in the quarterfinals Monday in Toronto.
''We kept our game simple and did what we had to do,'' Greenway said. ''Our forwards, our defensemen, everyone was blocking shots when they had to. We have great chemistry playing defense as a team.''
Greenway plays at Boston University, White and Woll at Boston College, and Bracco for Kitchener in the Ontario Hockey League.
Canada (3-1-0) will play the Czech Republic in Montreal in the quarterfinals. In the other quarterfinals, Group A winner Sweden will face Slovakia in Montreal, and Russia will play Denmark in Toronto.
''This was a tough road game to play and I'm proud of every one of these guys for the effort they gave to get the win,'' said coach Bob Motzko of St. Cloud State. ''We've been happy with our team for a while now, but tonight we overcame adversity and played with a lot of fire. We haven't won anything yet, though. We'll enjoy this tonight, but starting tomorrow it's time to turn our attention to the playoff round.''
Thomas Chabot scored on a 5-on-3 power play for Canada.
''I actually think it's a good thing,'' Canadian forward Matt Barzal said about the loss. ''I'd rather have it happen now than the quarters or semis. It's nice to see because we know that's what it's going to take to win. We know how we've got to come out. We've got to play desperate. Every shift counts.''
The Americans scored on two of their first three shots.
With Tyson Jost off for goalie interference, White scored at 4:31 by one-timing a pass from Greenway. Canadian defenseman Philippe Myers was called for kneeing less than a minute later and the Americans again took advantage. Greenway gathered the puck down low and breezed through the top of the crease untouched to tuck the puck past Connor Ingram at 6:04.
U.S. captain Luke Kunin was tossed from the game early in the second period. He flattened Myers behind the net and was given a five-minute interference major and game misconduct. Myers sustained a concussion.
''He's concussed. His chances to play in the next game are zero,'' Canadian coach Dominique Ducharme said. ''Might be he's doubtful for the rest of the tournament.''
Charlie McAvoy's tripping penalty gave Canada its second 5-on-3 advantage, and Chabot crept in from the point to beat Woll at 8:12 of the second. Canada was 1 for 6 on power plays.
''The penalty killing was the story of the game for us,'' Motzko said. ''We weren't so good the last two games, and we made some changes, and tonight the killers were great.''
Bracco restored the two-goal edge with 6:52 left in the period.
Sweden beat the Czech Republic 5-2 in Montreal on Saturday for its 40th consecutive group stage victory since 2007. Ottawa draft pick Jonathan Dahlen had a hat trick and Rasmus Asplund and Jens Looke also scored for Sweden (4-0-0). David Kase and Filip Hronek scored for the Czech Republic (1-1-2).
''We had a special game because we had nothing to play for,'' coach Tomas Monten said. ''We'd already won the group, so we said, `Forty games, 10 years, that's a record that will be tough to beat.' I think the players wanted to be involved in that historical moment and we used it as a trigger before the game.''
The Swedes haven't lost a group stage game since they fell in overtime to the United States in 2007.
Also in Montreal, Eeli Tolvanen and Aapeli Rasanen each had a goal and an assist and defending champion Finland responded to a coaching change with a 2-0 victory over Switzerland.
The Finns (0-1-3) outshot the Swiss 51-17. Finland will face Latvia in a best-of-three relegation playoff starting Monday at Bell Centre. Switzerland (1-2-1) finished fourth in the group.
Jussi Ahokas took over Friday night as coach after Jukka Ruatakorpi was fired. Ahokas, who was in Montreal working as a television analyst, was already slated to take over as coach after the tournament.
In the late game in Toronto, Russia beat Slovakia 2-0. Denis Guryanov and Yakov Trenin scored for Russia (2-2-0), and Ilya Samsonov made 15 saves. Slovakia was 1-3-0 in pool play.