Team USA Tops Czech Republic, 4-3, in OT Thriller

By pbadmin

USA Hockey Press Release

Team USA Tops Czech Republic, 4-3, in OT Thriller; Sets Gold-Medal Date with Canada at Memorial of Ivan Hlinka U.S. Under-18 Selects to Face Canada on Saturday at 1 p.m. EDT

BRECLAV, Czech Republic — Jonathon Blum (Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif.) potted the game-winning goal and Jeremy Smith (Brownstown, Mich.) made 41 saves for the U.S. Under-18 Select Team en route to a 4-3 overtime victory over host Czech Republic today at the 2006 Memorial of Ivan Hlinka. With the win, Team USA finished round-robin play atop Group A and advanced to the gold-medal game versus Canada, set for Saturday (Aug. 12) at 1:00 p.m. EDT.

Team USA used a pair of power-play goals to jump out to a 2-0 lead in the first period. Jimmy Hayes (Dorchester, Mass.) was first to light the lamp, using a quick wrist shot to evade Czech netminder Tomas Vosvrda at the 5:52 mark. Nick Petrecki (Clifton Park, N.Y.) then netted his first goal of the tournament at 14: 02 off a pass from Blum to put the United States up 2-0.

The Czechs scored the only two goals of the second frame to even the game at 2-2. The first was on a screened slap shot from the point at 10:01, followed by a power-play tally at 15:06.

Joe Diamond (Long Beach, N.Y.) converted on a power-play opportunity at 8:07 of the third period to put Team USA back on top, 3-2. However, just over five minutes later, the Czechs evened the game, as Jakub Voracek wrapped around the back of the U.S. net and lifted the puck over Smith’s pad at 13:23 to force overtime.

Playing in a 4-on-4 format for the five-minute sudden-death overtime period, Team USA secured its trip to the gold-medal game at 3:06 when Blum took a pass from Hayes across the goal mouth and fired a shot past Vosvrda.

Smith made 41 stops for Team USA, while Vosvrda recorded 29 saves for the Czech Republic.

The Memorial of Ivan Hlinka will conclude on August 12 with the medal round, in which the first-place teams from each group will play for the gold medal, the second-place teams will play for the bronze medal, the third-place teams will vie for fifth place and the fourth-place teams will face off for seventh.

NOTES: Jeremy Smith, who made 41 stops for his third-consecutive win, was named the U.S. Player of the Game for the second time in a row … The United States killed off 11-of-12 Czech power plays in the contest, while scoring on three of its eight power-play opportunities … Team USA is guaranteed its best finish since 2003, when the United States won the gold medal with a 3-2 win over Russia. Since then, Team USA has finished fourth and fifth, respectively … Either the United States (2003) or Canada (2002, 2004, 2005) has won the gold medal every year since the tournament’s inception in 2002 … Nine members of Team USA were on the 2005 U.S. Under-17 Select Team that took first place at the Five Nations Tournament … The U.S. Under-18 Select Team was chosen from the 2006 USA Hockey Select 17 Player Development Camp, which was held July 8-14 at St. Cloud (Minn.) State University, and featured many of America’s best hockey players born in 1989 … Ed Olczyk (Presto, Pa.), a USA Hockey Level 5 certified coach, is Team USA’s head coach, while Jeff Blashill (Oxford, Ohio), a Level 4 certified coach, is the assistant coach … The tournament name was changed from the Junior World Cup to the Memorial of Ivan Hlinka in honor of the great Czech player/coach, who died in a car accident on August 16, 2004.


Scoring By Period

USA 2-0-1-1 — 4

CZE 0-2-1-0 — 3

First Period – Scoring: 1, USA, Hayes (Hoeffel, Bruneteau), 5:52 (pp); 2, USA, Petrecki (Blum), 14:02 (4×3). Penalties: USA, Atkinson (charging), 1:11; CZE, Stoklasa (hooking), 4:16; USA, McDonagh (other), 6:15; USA, McDonagh (misconduct), 6:15; CZE, Roth (delay of game), 12:30; CZE, Ostrcil (delay of game), 12:52; USA, Cross (interference), 13: 15; CZE, Kafka (charging), 15:13; USA, Cross (Slashing), 15:34; CZE, Jebavy (interference), 19:01; USA, McDonagh (interference), 19:20.

Second Period – Scoring: 3, CZE, Havran (Indra), 10:01; 4, CZE, Voracek (Roman, Kana), 15:09 (pp). Penalties: USA, Atkinson (delay of game), 3:46; USA, Petrecki (charging), 10:20; USA, LoVerde (slashing), 13:01; USA, Petrecki (boarding), 14:35; CZE, Hoda (interference), 18: 39; USA, Diamond (unsportsmanlike conduct), 18:39.

Third Period – Scoring: 5, USA, Diamond (Sacchetti), 8:07 (pp); 6, CZE, Voracek (Roman, Kana), 13:23. Penalties: USA, Tomassoni (charging), 4:24; USA, Harper (roughing), 4:24; CZE, Paryzek (roughing), 4:24; CZE, Kafka (interference), 7:35; USA, Brownschidle (slashing), 15:30; USA, LoVerde (misconduct), 15:30; USA, Thurber (charging), 15:30; CZE, Team (too many players on ice), 17:12.

Shots By Period 1 2 3 OT Total

USA 16 5 8 4 33

CZE 10 12 20 2 44

Goaltending (SH-SV) 1 2 3 OT Total

USA, Smith, 60:00 10-10 12-10 20-19 2-2 44-41

CZE, Vosvrda, 60:00 16-14 5-5 8-7 4-3 33-29

Power Play: USA 3-8; CZE 1-12

Penalties: USA 16-48; CZE 10-20

Officials: Referee-Smetak; Linesmen-Hlavaty, Tosenovjan

Attendance: 1,346

Team USA 2006 Memorial of Ivan Hlinka Schedule & Results
August 8-12 • Breclav, Czech Republic & Piestany, Slovakia

Date Opponent Location Time (Local/EDT)/Result

Aug. 6 Slovakia (Exhib.) Breclav, Czech Republic W, 2-0

Aug. 8 Finland Breclav, Czech Republic W, 3-2

Aug. 9 Russia Breclav, Czech Republic W, 4-2

Aug. 10 Czech Republic Breclav, Czech Republic W, 4-3 (OT)

Aug. 12 Canada Breclav, Czech Republic 7 p.m./1 p.m.