North American rivals Canada and the USA squared off in a semifinal match at the 2015 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 World Championship in what was viewed by some as the gold medal matchup. If indeed this was the case, then Team USA should feel very good about their chances in Sunday’s true gold medal game after posting a convincing 7-2 win over Team Canada.
The U.S. successfully navigated a two-man disadvantage early in the third period of what was a 2-1 game in the USA’s favor, then proceeded to score five goals to blow open what had been a tight contest.
The offense is firing on all cylinders for the U.S. at this U18 as the team has scored 44 goals in their six games. Subtracting their first game, a 3-1 loss to Russia – their only loss to this point of the tournament – the team has scored 43 goals in five games. While a quartet of forwards – Auston Matthews, Jeremy Bracco, Matthew Tkachuk, and Jack Roslovic – have been the focal point of Team USA’s offense, the roster features 13 players that have contributed at least five points apiece.
Two role players for the U.S. at this event have been defenseman Joe Masonius and forward Michael Floodstrand. Masonius has played the role of a defensive defender, posting one assist and a +9 rating to this point of the tournament. Floodstrand is one of the 13 USA players that have posted at least five points in this tournament, with Floodstrand scoring a goal and five points, his lone goal being a game winner.
Both players are eligible for the 2015 NHL Draft, although NHL Central Scouting did not rank either player in their final rankings.
Hockey’s Future caught up with Masonius and Floodstrand following their country’s win over Canada, conversations featured in this HF video.
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