CANADA DROPS PRE-WORLD CUP OPENER
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Patrice Bergeron (Ancienne-Lorette, Que./Boston, NHL) and Drew Doughty (London, Ont./Los Angeles, NHL) scored, but Canada fell 4-2 to the United States on Friday night in the first of three exhibition games the team will play ahead of the 2016 World Cup of Hockey.
Carey Price (Anahim Lake, B.C./Montreal, NHL) took the loss in net for Canada.
Canada dominated the opening 12 minutes of the game, outshooting the U.S. 12-4, but couldn’t beat goaltender Jonathan Quick.
The tide quickly turned the other way late in the opening period when Ryan Suter’s wrist shot from the blue line was redirected in the high slot by Zach Parise past Price.
Sixty-five seconds later Patrick Kane walked alone along the goal line. Price made the initial save, but Kane scored on the follow through.
The Americans finished the fast-paced first period with a 15-13 advantage in shots on net.
Canada finally got on the board 13:24 into the second. After Brad Marchand (Hammonds Plains, N.S./Boston, NHL) did his part to keep the puck in the offensive zone, his linemates broke to the net. Sidney Crosby (Cole Harbour, N.S./Pittsburgh, NHL) lost the puck in front but a trailing Bergeron did a little toe drag and scored on the backhand.
Canada found itself down a pair again 2:30 later. Jack Johnson’s shot from along the boards was stopped, but a big rebound awaited Joe Pavelski in front.
Ben Bishop took over in net for the Americans to start the third.
Doughty – off a long feed from Ryan Getzlaf (Regina, Sask./Anaheim, NHL) – beat him with a rocket from just inside the face-off circle early in the period.
Price headed to the bench with just under two minutes left in regulation, but Canada couldn’t get the late equalizer.
Derek Stepan took advantage of the empty net and made it 4-2 with 1:21 remaining in regulation.
Canada outshot the U.S. 43-25.
The two teams face off again Saturday night in Ottawa.