U.S. Tops Canada at World Championships

Team USA 2012Jack Johnson was the hero in overtime Saturday as his second goal of the game helped the United States top Canada 5-4 at the World Championships. Johnson’s goal came 1:47 into the extra session, and marks the first time the U.S. has beaten Canada in the World Championships since 2001.

The American squad, now fielding a 2-0-0 record in the tournament, opened the scoring when Jim Slater blasted a shot past Canadian goalie Cam Ward at 1:10 of the first period. It didn’t take long for Canada to tie the game, however, as John Tavares beat U.S. goalie Jimmy Howard at 6:38 of the first.

In the second, Jeff Skinner picked up his first goal of the tournament at 7:34 and put Canada in the lead 2-1. Only six minutes later, it was Jack Johnson’s first goal of the game which brought the U.S. back to a 2-2 tie. Despite the minimal scoring through two periods, the Americans had frequent quality scoring chances. Cam Ward made several outstanding saves, including a paddle save on Kyle Okposo which would have otherwise been a sure goal.

In the third, scoring opened up for both squads as they traded goals twice throughout the period. The U.S. jumped out to a 3-2 lead when Patrick Dwyer scored at 6:43 of the third. Evander Kane evened the score at 3-3 when he picked up a goal only three minutes later. Late in the third, at 16:19, Nate Thompson gave the Americans a 4-3 lead and had hoped they could hold on to the lead for the remainder of the game. Team Canada was relentless, however, and Duncan Keith ripped a slapshot that made its way through traffic in front to beat Howard with 1:39 left in the game.

While the score remained tied at the end of regulation, John Tavares took a penalty with one second remaining in the period. Team U.S.A used this penalty to their advantage, along with a fresh sheet of ice to start overtime, and kept the puck moving quickly in the extra period. While Canada almost killed it off, Jack Johnson pulled the trigger and buried his shot at 1:47 of overtime. Johnson now leads the team in goals in the tournament with three.

Both teams will continue play on Monday, May 7th, as Canada takes on France and the Americans battle Slovakia. Both games will take place in Helsinki, and as we mentioned before, all games will be streaming live on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/icehockey


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