Bridgewater, Nova Scotia – Declan Farmer (Tampa, Fla.) scored three goals and tallied two assists to help the U.S. National Sled Hockey Team to a 10-0 victory over Czechia in the opening game of the Para Hockey Cup at Lunenburg County Lifestyle Centre on Sunday, Nov. 27.
“It was a strong start for us,” said David Hoff (Bottineau, N.D.), head coach of the U.S. National Sled Team, “We were really happy that we were able to utilize all three lines and get everyone involved.”
The U.S. generated a number of chances early on in the first period, most notably an opportunity 2:11 into the game when Brody Roybal (Northlake, Ill.) fed Josh Misiewicz (La Grange, Ill.) on the goal mouth but was denied by a diving save by the Czechia goaltender Martin Kudela.
Just under a minute later, Rob Easley (Denver, Colo.) generated an offensive zone turnover and connected with Travis Dodson (Deming, N.M.), who fed David Eustace (Stoneham, Mass.) for the first goal of the tournament at 3:10. Kevin McKee extended the lead moments later, firing a shot into the top corner off a feed from Roybal. Farmer found Ben Musselman (Amelia, Ohio) out front with 8:43 remaining to give the U.S. a 3-0 lead, and Farmer added his second helper of the game after he assisted Jack Wallace (Franklin Lakes, N.J.) to make it 4-0 in the closing minutes of the first period.
Farmer opened up the scoring early in the second period, placing one into the short side corner 1:43 into the frame. Less than a minute later, Roybal found the back of the net from the top of the circles to give the U.S. a 6-0 lead. Captain Josh Pauls (Green Brook, N.J.) assisted on Dodson’s first goal of the tournament mid-way through the period, and Farmer picked up his second of the game on a breakaway after intercepting a pass in the neutral zone to put the U.S. up 8-0.
Team USA took a 9-0 lead when Farmer batted home a rebound to record a hat trick. Wallace further extended the lead with a shot from the low slot into the upper corner.
Goaltender Jen Lee (San Francisco, Calif.) picked up a shutout in his first game of the season, stopping nine shots in all 45 minutes of action.
The U.S. will take on Italy tomorrow at 10:30 a.m. ET. The full U.S. event schedule, along with live streaming links, is available here.
NOTES: David Eustace was named U.S. Player of the Game … The U.S. outshot Czechia 34-9.