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Team USA beats Canada 5-4 in OT

Saturday, 05.05.2012 / 3:30 PM / News Articles
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Team USA beats Canada 5-4 in OT
Jack Johnson scored at 1:47 of overtime to give the United States a 5-4 victory against Canada at the World Championships -- just the second win for the Americans against Canada at the tournament in 18 games since 1985.

Canada has always been the team the United States has struggled to beat. On Saturday, the Americans did just that.

Jack Johnson scored at 1:47 of overtime to give the United States a 5-4 victory against Canada at the World Championships -- just the second win for the Americans against Canada at the tournament in 18 games since 1985, and only the fourth in 42 games since 1931.

"It's an easy game to get up for," Team USA goaltender Jimmy Howard of the Detroit Red Wings said. "You're having fun out there, and that's exactly what it was today -- fun. It's great to get a good start. We're now 2-0, and we just have to build off it."

With John Tavares in the penalty box for delay of game after batting the puck into the crowd with 1.1 seconds left in regulation, Johnson won it when he snapped a wrist shot past Cam Ward for his second goal of the game.

"It's never fun to lose," Ward told the IIHF's website, "no matter if it's in regulation or on overtime. They scored a big goal to force it into OT and we took a bad break on the penalty to give them an opportunity to score."

The goal capped a back-and-forth game at Helsinki's Hartwall Arena in which neither team was able to lead by more than one goal. The Americans (2-0-0, 5 points) outshot Canada 46-34.

"The best team won tonight," Team Canada coach Brent Sutter said.

The Americans opened the scoring 1:10 into the game off a harmless-looking rush. Jim Slater carried the puck into the Canadian zone and fired a shot through a maze of players in front that beat Ward cleanly.

Canada (1-0-1, 4 points) tied the game at 6:38 on a pretty goal. The puck came back to the point to Duncan Keith, who spotted Tavares alone in front and hit him with a quick pass. Tavares waited out Howard, then scored on a backhander.

Canada weathered two penalties in the first half of the second period, then took the lead thanks to a nice play by Tavares. He and Jeff Skinner came in on a 2-on-2 break; Tavares crisscrossed and left the puck for Skinner, who ripped a shot past Howard's blocker to make it 2-1 Canada at 7:34.

But the penalties caught up to Canada later in the period. Johnson, the team captain, picked up a loose puck and beat Ward at 13:54 with Andrew Ladd in the box for tripping.

Canada got a power play early in the third period, but Team USA took the lead when Patrick Dwyer stuffed the puck past Ward on a shorthanded wraparound at 6:43. Canada got even at 9:51 when Evander Kane fired a wrister over Howard's glove.

The U.S. went ahead again with 3:41 left in regulation to go when Nate Thompson got his own rebound and backhanded a dribbler over the goal line. But with 1:39 left, Keith ripped a slap shot past Howard to tie the score 4-4.

Both teams have Sunday off before playing Monday. The Americans, now 2-0-0, play Slovakia, while Canada takes on France.

Switzerland 5, Kazakhstan 1

Defenseman Mark Streit scored twice and added an assist as Switzerland routed Kazakhstan in its opening game. Reto Berra made 19 saves as the Swiss won their Group A match in Helsinki by beating newly promoted Kazakhstan in just the second meeting between the teams in tournament history.

"There are no easy games in this tournament, all teams can play. Fortunately, we got an early lead," said Streit, whose power-play goal at 11:04 of the opening period made it 2-0.

"We knew we couldn't have any turnovers in the neutral zone. We wanted to get the puck deep into their zone, cycle it there, and get them tired. That's what we did, they took a couple of penalties, and we took advantage of that," he told the IIHF's website.

Streit, the Swiss team captain, followed Ivo Ruthemann's goal at 9:48 by one-timing Roman Wick's pass into the net for the first of his team's three power-play goals.

Roman Savchenko's one-timer past Berra early in the second period made it 2-1, but Streit's blast during a 5-on-3 power play restored the Swiss team's two-goal lead. Streit then sprung teammates Dennis Hollenstein and Ruthemann on a 2-on-1 break, and Ruthemann scored his second of the game for a 4-1 lead.

"It was nice to score two goals, but we have a very big game tomorrow, and we can't feel too comfortable about ourselves. This is in the past, and we look forward to the game against Belarus," said Streit, a defenseman with the New York Islanders.

Felicien Du Bois scored at 16:53 of the middle period for a 5-1 lead. Berra faced only six shots in the final period.

Both teams play again Sunday -- Switzerland faces Belarus and Kazakhstan meets France.

Russia 5, Latvia 2

Despite the drum-pounding enthusiasm of Latvian fans at the Globe Arena in Stockholm, Russia rallied to win in Zinetula Bilyaletdinov's debut as coach as Evgeni Malkin scored twice and added an assist.

Russian captain Ilya Nikulin and Alexander Popov added a goal and an assist apiece, and Alexander Perezhogin had a pair of assists. Miks Indrasis and Kaspars Daugavins scored for Latvia, which held a 1-0 lead for more than 22 minutes but couldn't make it stand up as Russia outshot the Latvians 40-26.

Latvia started the scoring at 11:32 of the first period when Miks Indrasis wobbled a slap shot past Semyon Varlamov from the top of the left circle.

The Russians dominated play after that but didn't get even until Nikulin's power-play goal at 13:45 of the second period, a shot that deflected off a Latvian defender and into the net.

Malkin put Russia ahead to stay at 16:29, working a give-and-go with Nikulin for another power-play goal. He made it 3-1 at 5:03 of the third, converting a rebound after Popov's shot was stopped by Edgars Masalskis. Popov's goal at 10:53 expanded the lead to 4-1.

The Latvians got some life with 4:39 left when Daugavins beat Varlamov during a power play. But Evgeni Kuznetsov beat Masalskis with a high wrist shot just 92 seconds later to seal the win.

Both teams play their second game on Sunday -- Russia faces Norway, while Latvia plays Belarus.




1 NSH 62 41 14 7 188 147 89
2 ANA 63 39 17 7 186 176 85
3 STL 61 39 18 4 190 152 82
4 CHI 63 37 21 5 183 150 79
5 WPG 63 31 20 12 174 170 74
6 VAN 61 35 23 3 174 162 73
7 MIN 61 32 22 7 173 160 71
8 LAK 61 29 20 12 164 157 70
9 CGY 62 33 25 4 175 160 70
10 SJS 62 30 24 8 173 177 68
11 COL 62 27 24 11 166 179 65
12 DAL 62 27 25 10 195 207 64
13 ARI 62 20 35 7 137 210 47
14 EDM 62 18 34 10 142 206 46


B. Little 63 24 26 9 50
A. Ladd 63 20 30 12 50
B. Wheeler 61 16 28 12 44
D. Byfuglien 63 15 26 6 41
M. Perreault 56 18 18 3 36
M. Scheifele 63 10 25 4 35
M. Frolik 63 13 19 3 32
D. Stafford 57 10 17 -18 27
J. Tlusty 53 13 10 -17 23
E. Kane 37 10 12 -1 22
M. Hutchinson 18 7 5 .920 2.29
O. Pavelec 13 13 7 .909 2.60
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