Three points apiece from Noah Grove (Frederick, Md.), Kevin McKee (Chicago, Ill.), Brody Roybal (Northlake, Ill.) and Jack Wallace (Franklin Lakes, N.J.) helped the U.S. National Sled Team defeat the Czech Republic, 8-0, to advance to its ninth-straight championship appearance at the Para Hockey Cup.
The U.S. remains undefeated 4-0-0-0 (W-OTW-OTL-L) heading into the championship game, which will take place Saturday (Dec. 7) at 4:30 p.m. ET at the Paradise Double Ice Complex. The championship game will be broadcast live on TSN.
The U.S. held a commanding 6-0 lead after the first period. Grove cleaned up his own rebound to open the scoring 4:51 into the game. Less than a minute later, Josh Hargis (Colorado Springs, Colo.) added another tally for Team USA to make it 2-0 with just under 10 minutes to go in the first period.
Wallace had a hand in three goals in roughly three minutes to help extend the lead to 5-0 in the first. Wallace took credit for the assist on goals from Declan Farmer (Tampa, Fla.) and McKee.
In addition to his two assists, Wallace added a goal to his point total with a stunning wrist shot from just above the face-off dot that landed top corner.
With just :27 ticking down on the clock, Rico Roman (Portland, Ore.) tallied an unassisted goal to put Team USA up 6-0 heading into the first intermission. The U.S. outshot the Czech Republic 18-2 in the first period.
Ralph DeQuebec (San Pedro, Calif.) nearly scored a shorthanded goal in the second period, but it was gloved down by Czech Republics goaltender Martin Kudela. Brody Royal (Northlake, Ill.) had a breakaway opportunity late in the second, but his shot was knocked away by Kudela, preserving the score 6-0.
Roybal found the back of the net with less than a minute to play in the second period and U.S. goaltender Jen Lee (San Francisco, Calif.) earned an assist, his first career point for Team USA, on the play. Lee passed the puck off to Roybal, who skated it the length of the ice, through three Czech defenders, and tucked the puck under Kudela’s glove. In addition to his assist, Lee made six saves and earned his second shutout of the season.
McKee sealed the final at 8-0 after he recorded his second goal of the day, picking up his own rebound and sending it top corner less than two minutes into the third period.
Notes: Kevin McKee (Chicago, Ill.) was named the U.S. Player of the Game ... The U.S. outshot the Czech Republic, 36-6, went 1-for-2 on the powerplay and finished 1-for-1 on the penalty kill ... For complete statistics, click here.
|Date||Opponent||TIME (LOCAL/ET)/Result||LOCATION||Broadcast/Stream||U.S. Player of the Game|
|Sun., Dec. 1||Russia
|W, 3-0||Paradise Double Ice Complex Paradise, Newfoundland||Livestream||Brody Roybal|
|Mon., Dec. 2||Czech Republic
|W, 8-0||Paradise Double Ice Complex Paradise, Newfoundland||Livestream||Josh Pauls|
|Wed., Dec. 4||Canada
|W, 4-1||Paradise Double Ice Complex Paradise, Newfoundland||Livestream||Rico Roman|
|Thurs., Dec. 5||Czech Republic
|W, 8-0||Paradise Double Ice Complex Paradise, Newfoundland||Livestream||Kevin McKee|
|Sat., Dec. 7||Canada
|W, 2-1||Paradise Double Ice Complex Paradise, Newfoundland||TSN||Declan Farmer|