GRAND FORKS, N.D. - Joseph Woll (St. Louis, Mo.) stopped all 15 shots he faced as the U.S. Men’s National Under-18 Team blanked Switzerland, 4-0, here tonight at Ralph Engelstad Arena. With the win, Team USA concludes the preliminary round with a 4-0-0-0 (W-OTW-OTL-L) record and earns the top seed in Group A. Team USA will face the Czech Republic next in the quarterfinal round on Thursday (April 21).
Team USA’s first goal came in the first half of the opening frame. Luke Martin (St. Louis, Mo.) worked the puck up ice to Logan Brown (Raleigh, N.C.) who entered the zone, drawing Swiss defenders toward him. Brown passed over to a streaking Casey Mittelstadt (Eden Prairie, Minn.) who kicked it to himself and slid the puck past Philip Wuthrich for the score. The United States doubled its lead, 2-0, late in the period on the power play when Ryan Lindgren (Minneapolis, Minn.) found Kailer Yamamoto (Spokane, Wash.) staked out in front of the crease. Yamamoto knocked Lindgren’s feed easily into the net. Martin earned his second helper of the game on the tally.
The U.S. extended its advantage, 3-0, in the early stages of the second stanza. Graham McPhee (Bethesda, Md.) battled behind the Swiss net forcing a turnover and put the puck out front where Will Lockwood (Bloomfield Hills, Mich.) was stationed. After Lockwood's attempt was denied, McPhee circled to the front and whacked the now loose puck into the cage.
The United States added a late tally in the third period while Woll blocked the only two shots he faced as Team USA claimed victory. On the U.S. goal, Brown stopped a clearing attempt by the Swiss and hit Mittelstadt who went forehand to backhand for the score. Yamamoto also collected an assist on the play.
The U.S. Men’s Under-18 National Team will next face the Czech Republic in the quarterfinals on Thursday (April 21). Puck drop is slated for 8:30 p.m. ET.