Greetings from London, Ontario. Team USA arrived throughout the day, flying into Toronto before taking a bus to London. The last to arrive were Team USA's two coaches -- head coach, David Hoff, and assistant coach Corey Gorder, who both traveled from Bottineau, N.D., arriving to the hotel just past 2 a.m. local time.
RETURN TO LONDON
This is the second time the U.S. will skate in a Para Hockey Cup in London, Ontario. Held in April of 2011, the U.S. skated to a third-place finish with a 3-0-0-2 (W-OTW-OTL-L) record by defeating Japan, 9-1, in the third-place game. Current U.S. players to skate in that tournament include goaltenders Steve Cash (Overland, Mo.) and Jen Lee (San Francisco, Calif.), defenseman Josh Pauls (Green Brook, N.J.) and forwards Rico Roman (Portland, Ore.), Kevin McKee (Chicago, Ill.).
Over the last four years, the United States has skated to a 43-4-1-3 (W-OTW-OTL-L) record in all competitions over the last four years that includes a Paralympic gold (2018), two world championship medals (gold - 2015; silver - 2017), four-straight Para Hockey Cups (2015, 2016 (Jan.), 2016 (Dec.), 2017), the 2016 IPC Pan-Pacific Championship and the 2018 Turin Para Ice Hockey International Tournament. Additionally, since 2009, Team USA has reached eight consecutive gold-medal game berths at the Paralympic and World Championship level. In those gold-medal game appearances, the U.S. has posted a 6-2 record while claiming three Paralympic gold medals (2010, 2014, 2018) and three world championship gold medals (2009, 2012, 2015). Its two losses came in world championship play (2013, 2017).
“You have to enjoy success, but then you have to move on,” said first-year U.S. head coach David Hoff, who was an assistant on last year’s gold medal-winning squad. “That’s what this program has done so well. When you look at the run this program has been on, that’s what makes it special and that’s part of our job as a staff, to make sure we get past March and move onto 2018-19. That’s the challenge in front of this team.”
To read more about Team USA's goal of continuing its winning ways, click here.