RED DOWNED BY AMERICANS IN WILD ONE AT SHOWCASE
JASON LA ROSE
KAMLOOPS, B.C. – Antoine Morand (Mercier, Que./Halifax, QMJHL) and Ian Mitchell (Calahoo, Alta./University of Denver, NCHC) had a goal and an assist apiece, and Canada Red climbed out of a three-goal hole before falling 7-5 to United States White on Tuesday night at the Sport Chek World Junior Showcase.
The game was a lower-scoring version of the first half of the Canada-USA doubleheader, where Canada White came back from two goals down before giving up a third-period winner to the Americans.
After the teams went back and forth in a four-goal first period, the U.S. went off for three goals in less than seven minutes early in the second, only for the Canadians to get three of their own to tie the game.
With overtime looming, Jack Hughes jumped on a turnover behind the Canadian net and fed older brother Quinn, who found room over the short-side shoulder of Red goaltender Matt Villalta (Godfrey, Ont./Sault Ste. Marie, OHL) to put the Americans up for good with just 2:25 left.
The U.S. was first on the board at 7:09 when Ivan Lodnia buried a quick shot past Michael DiPietro (Amherstburg, Ont./Windsor, OHL), but Noah Dobson (Summerside, P.E.I./Acadie-Bathurst, QMJHL) wired the 1-1 goal upstairs on American netminder Spencer Knight less than two minutes later.
Jason Robertson restored the U.S. advantage just 56 seconds after the Dobson goal, banking a shot off DiPietro and in from a sharp angle, only to have Mitchell take a cross-ice feed from Michael Rasmussen (South Surrey, B.C./Tri-City, WHL) and beat Knight to the blocker side to make it a 2-2 game after 20 minutes.
The Americans controlled the early minutes of the second period, getting a pair of goals from Joel Farabee and one from Jack Drury to take a 5-2 lead before the midway mark of the middle frame.
Nick Suzuki (London, Ont./Owen Sound, OHL) got the Canadian comeback started on the power play before the end of the second, burying a no-look backhand feed from Alex Formenton (King City, Ont./London, OHL) to send Red to the intermission down by a pair.
Morand needed just 48 seconds of the third period to convert on another man advantage, poking a loose puck past Knight, and Isaac Ratcliffe (London, Ont./Guelph, OHL) knocked in a bouncing pick at 7:03 to bring Red all the way back.
After Hughes netted the winner, Oliver Wahlstrom found the empty net to finish the scoring.
With the split-squad games done, both teams will be back on the ice Thursday; the Americans will take on Sweden in the early game (1 p.m. PT), followed by Canada facing off with Finland (6 p.m. PT).