Germans not much of test for U.S.
- Blog Post by: Roman Augustoviz
- December 27, 2012 - 2:33 PM
Was it too easy? Perhaps.
But it is hard to find much fault with the U.S. team's 8-0 beatdown of Germany on Thursday in its first game of the World Junior Championships in Ufa, Russia.
Here is a look at the game, based mostly on USA Hockey's live blog.
Gophers freshman Mike Reilly started on defense, paired with U.S. alternate captain Seth Jones. Coach Phil Housley went with only six defensemen -- could have had seven on bench.
The U.S. wore white, the Germans black. And the white team scored in 19 seconds.
Sean Kuraly went five-hole. Maybe the Germans were still in shell-shock after being pounded by the Canadians 9-3 on Wednesday. The Americans were anxious to score after losing to Finland 5-1 in their second exhibition game before this tournament in Helsinki. That game was way back on Dec. 22.
Defenseman Jacob Trouba made it 2-0 with a wrist shot from the point at 8:30.
(When I broke the news of Germany's one-sided loss to my daughter Jessi, a foreign exchange student from Germany who is a senior in high school, she was not exactly heart-broken. "Nobody in Germany cares about hockey," she said. "I didn't even know we had a team.")
Seventy-five seconds later, Alex Galchenyuk makes it 3-0 USA. Galchenyuk, who was named the player of the game for th winners, stole the puck, wheeled around and scored from the high slot on a shot that went into one of the top corners.
Germany put the puck into the U.S. net with five minutes left in the opening period, but the shot was batted into the net by Huba Sekesi's glove. And a review confirmed it was not a goal.
Kuraly commited a late cross-checking penalty, but the U.S. killed off Germany's first power play and the period ended 3-0.
U.S. outshot the Germans 14-9 but was 0-for-3 on the power play.
Reilly and Jones started second period on defense, too.
And again the U.S. scored in the first minute. This time Galchenyuk picked up loose puck behind Germany's net and fed Riley Barber out front for another five-hole goal at 14 seconds. So it was 4-0.
Defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere (love his strange name Gost is be here, easy to remember) makes it 5-0 with a power-play goal at 6:33, off a pass from Jones. The goal came on a one-timer from top of right faceoff circle.
Ryan Hartman scored on a rebound at 7:55 and it was 6-0.
Germany's best scoring chance came on a 5-on-3 power play with seven minutes left in the period. U.S. goalie John Gibson had to make five saves, including two with his leg pads. Reilly was out with Jones and Vince Trocheck for a shift on the penalty kill.
The U.S. switched goalies for the third period. Gibson was done after stopping 19 shots. Jon Gillies replaced him and stopped seven more. Final shots were 46-26. Marvin Cupper was the Germans' netminder.
Two minutes into third period, the U.S. had to kill off another five-on-three power play and did.
And in the middle of the period, the U.S. got two more goals. Forward J.T. Miller stole the puck and scored at 8:36 and Jones scored at 10:32 for the final 8-0 margin.
The crowd, probably getting bored, started the wave with 7:20 left. Not in Russia, too? Yikes.
A look at the U.S. win by Chris Peters, who writes the U.S. of Hockey blog, is here.
And NHL.com on the game is here.
Peters on Reilly's game:
The offensive defenseman looked good in both zones today, but did he ever use the ice well. Using his good vision and speed, Reilly was able to find the lanes today and make good decisions. He had some terrific stretch passes that turned into goals and/or scoring chances and was able to jump into plays. Playing with Seth Jones, he can take a few risks, but today I thought he controlled his game well. That was a huge positive for the U.S. as he can be a weapon offensively.
U.S. coach Phil Housley liked his team's effort. "Overall, we played a well-balanced game," he said, according to a USA Hockey news release. "We got the start we needed to build a good pace and flow to the game. One thing I was really proud of was that when we did have the lead we didn't get away from the team game. We realized what got us the lead and they really focused on being aware of that over the three periods so I was really pleased with that."
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