After enjoying a welcomed day of rest, the U.S. National Junior Team went back to the ice today. Staff worked overnight to move the U.S. operations from Ostrava to Trinec, Czech Republic, about 40 minutes southeast. Werk Arena, home to HC Ocelari Trinec, was built in 2014 and seats 5,400 fans.
The team familiarized itself with the new arena ahead of their quarterfinal matchup against Finland tomorrow (Jan. 2). Upon arriving back in Ostrava, players grabbed dinner and held a video meeting for final preparations.
U.S. IN QUARTERFINALS
The U.S. is 11-0-0-7 (W-OTW-OTL-L) all-time in IIHF World Junior Championship quarterfinals, including a 4-0-0-1 record in its last five quarterfinals. USA is 2-0-0-0 versus Finland in quarterfinals, including a 6-2 victory in 2010. The U.S. enters the 2020 event having outscored opponents, 17-5, in its last four quarterfinals. It the team's most recent quarterfinal matchup, the U.S. won 3-1 thanks to Cayden Primeau's 18-save performance.
GOLD MEDAL REMATCH
The U.S. and Finland meet in 2020 IIHF World Junior Championship quarterfinals after playing in the 2019 gold-medal game. It is the first time since the 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship, when Sweden and Finland squared off, that the previous year's gold-medal game teams played one another in quarterfinals the following year. Finland won the gold-medal game in 2014 over Sweden, 3-2, but would go on to lose the following year to Sweden, 6-3.