POWER PLAY LEADS U.S. PAST CANADA WHITE IN GROUP A SHOWDOWN
JASON LA ROSE
SAULT STE. MARIE, Ont. – Joel Farabee made it two game-winning goals in as many days, scoring on the power play with 5:08 to go to give the United States a 3-2 win over Canada White on Monday at the 2016 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge.
The win moves the Americans into first place in Group A with five points, two up on Canada White and Canada Black. The Czech Republic, the fourth team in the group, has one point through two games.
The U.S. was lethal with the man advantage, scoring all three of its goals while a man up; Jacob Semik and Blade Jenkins joined Farabee as goal-scorers for the Americans, who were 3-for-9 on the power play.
Tristen Nielsen (Fort St. John, B.C./Calgary, WHL) and Elijah Brown (Edmonton, Alta./Seattle, WHL) had the goals for Canada White, although neither actually shot the puck into the net; both Canadian markers came from deflections off Americans.
The Americans, on the ice less than 24 hours after the comeback win over the Czechs on Sunday, had the momentum early, outshooting Canada White 17-7 in the first period.
Semik had the lone goal of the opening frame, stepping in off the point and snapping a wrist shot through a screen and past Canadian goaltender Marshall Frappier (Nepean, Ont./Nepean, CCHL).
Canada White picked up the pace in the second, but again fell victim to the U.S. power play; Jenkins hammered a one-timer through Frappier at 13:01 for a two-goal lead.
Nielsen got one back for the Canadians before the end of the middle stanza, getting a fortuitous deflection off American forward Jake Pivonka and past goaltender Keegan Karki to make it a 2-1 game after 40 minutes.
The bounces continued to go the way of Canada White early in the third; Brown threw a shot from the point towards the American goal, only to have it redirect off a stick in the high slot and past Karki to tie the game on the power play.
But the comeback was not to be; Farabee took a cross-ice pass from Bode Wilde, waited for a Canadian to go down to block his shot, and ripped a wrister just under the crossbar past Frappier on the short side.
The Americans finished with a 33-22 advantage in shots on goal.
Both teams conclude the preliminary round Tuesday; Canada White is first, taking on the Czech Republic in the first game of the day (12 p.m. ET), while the U.S. meets Canada Black in the round-robin finale (7:30 p.m. ET).