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U.S. Advances to Men's World QF Despite 3-2 OT Setback

By usahockey.com, 05/17/16, 5:30AM MDT

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3-2 OT Loss Still Berths Team USA to Quarterfinal Matchup vs Czechs Thursday in Moscow


ST. PETERSBURG, Russia — The U.S. Men’s National Team dropped a 3-2 decision in overtime to Slovakia here today in its final preliminary-round game, but earned a critical point to advance to the quarterfinals of the 2016 International Ice Hockey Federation Men’s World Championship.

Team USA (3-0-1-3, W-OTW-OTL-L) will take on the Czech Republic in the quarterfinal round at 9:15 a.m. ET Thursday (May 19) in Moscow, Russia. The game will be televised live on NBCSN and a live stream will be available on NBC Sports Live Extra.

"It was a hard fought game," said John Hynes, head coach of the U.S. Men's National Team. "We got the point we needed, but we'll need to be better going forward. Our guys are excited and we look forward to the opportunity in front of us."

The U.S. nearly took the lead with five minutes gone in the opening stanza when Frank Vatrano (Springfield, Mass.) sent a pass to Vinnie Hinostroza (Bartlett, Ill.) alone in front, but Slovakia netminder Julius Hudacek dove across the crease for the save.

With 1:21 remaining in the first period, Slovakia took the lead on a wrist shot from Christian Jaros at the left faceoff dot.

In the first few minutes of the second period, the two teams exchanged power play opportunities. With one second remaining on the Team USA power play, Brock Nelson (Warroad, Minn.) converted on feed from David Warsofsky (Marshfield, Mass.) at the right post to tie the game.

Slovakia received back-to-back man-advantages shortly after, but the U.S. penalty kill was successful and the game went to the third period knotted at 1-1.

At 2:53 of the third period, Nick Foligno (Buffalo, N.Y.) gave the U.S. the lead as his pass to Matthews deflected off a Slovakian defenseman’s skate into the net.

The U.S. almost extended its lead to 3-1 with about nine minutes to play as Foligno got his stick on a point shot from Dylan Larkin (Waterford, Mich.), but the goal was disallowed due to a crease violation.

Slovakia’s Pavol Skalicky tied the game at 12:14 when a shot from the blue line redirected twice before making its way into the net, and the game went to overtime.

Just :59 into the extra period, Marko Dano scored to account for the 3-2 final.

U.S. goaltender Keith Kinkaid (Farmingville, N.Y.) made 27 saves, while Hudacek stopped 23 shots. 

NOTES: Tyler Motte (St. Clair, Mich.) was named the U.S. Player of the Game ... For complete game statistics, click here ... Noah Hanifin (Norwood, Mass.) played 22:44, the most of all U.S. players ... The U.S. finished as the fourth seed in Group B and will take on the Czech Republic, the top seed in Group A, in the quarterfinals.

Team USA Schedule

Date Opponent Time (Local/ET)
May 3 Finland (exhibition) L, 2-3 OT
May 6 Canada L, 1-5
May 7 Belarus W, 6-3
May 9 Finland L, 2-3
May 12 France W, 4-0
May 13 Hungary W, 5-1
May 15 Germany L, 2-3
May 17 Slovakia L, 2-3 OT
May 19 Czech Republic (quarterfinal) W, 2-1 SO
May 21 Canada
Semifinals
L, 3-4
May 22 Russia
Bronze Medal Game
L, 2-7

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