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U.S. Falls to Czech Republic, 4-3

By USAHockey.com, 09/22/16, 8:45PM MDT

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Loss concludes Team USA's run at 2016 World Cup of Hockey

TORONTO – Team USA scored a goal in all three facets of the game, power play, short handed and even strength, but still came up on the losing end of a 4-3 result against the Czech Republic  tonight in the third and final preliminary round game of the 2016 World Cup of Hockey.

Joe Pavelski (Plover, Wis.), Justin Abdelkader (Muskegon, Mich.) and Ryan McDonagh (St. Paul, Minn.) each scored for Team USA.

“I thought we played hard. For most of the game we did things that we needed to do to develop scoring chances, but we didn't score enough. It's as simple as that,” said John Tortorella, head coach of the U.S. World Cup of Hockey Team.

The Czech Republic jumped out to a 1-0 lead at the 12:44 mark when Zbynek Michalek's point shot slipped through a screen and past U.S goaltender Ben Bishop (Denver, Colo.).

The U.S answered less than two minutes later when Pavelski converted a pass from Zach Parise (Minneapolis, Minn.) for a power-play goal.

Bishop kept the game tied at 1-1 with a big save early in the second period as Michal Birner skated in alone with Dmitrij Jaskin parked in front waiting for the rebound.

The Czechs broke the deadlock at the 6:03 mark of the second period when Milan Michalek was credited with an unassisted goal. Ryan Suter (Madison, Wis.) attempted to clear the puck from the crease but inadvertently knocked into the net.

The U.S drew even at the 14:13 mark of the middle frame when defenseman Dustin Byfuglien (Roseau, Minn.) gained the zone before putting on the brakes near the half boards and firing a cross-ice pass to a streaking Abdelkader, who one-timed the puck past Czech goaltender Petr Mrazek.

The Czechs regained the lead for good, late in the period on a goals from Andrej Sustr and Michalek, 39 seconds apart. Sustr's shot from down around the goal line managed to sneak inside the goal post to give the Czechs the lead, and Michalek netted his second goal of the game on a wrist shot that beat Bishop high to the glove side.

Team USA cut the lead to one early in the final frame as McDonagh steered home a Blake Wheeler (Plymouth, Minn.) pass for a short-handed goal with Parise in the penalty box for hooking.

The U.S maintained constant pressure in the Czech zone as they continued to push for the equalizer, peppering Mrazek with 13 shots in the period.

Cory Schneider (Marblehead, Mass.) stopped all seven shots he faced during the third period in relief of Bishop, who turned aside 16 of the 20 shots he faced.

NOTES: For full game statistics, click here … Team USA finished the World Cup of Hockey with a 0-3-0 record, losing to Team Europe, 3-0, and Team Canada, 4-2, in its first two games of the tournament …  The U.S. competed in Group A with Canada, Czech Republic and Team Europe … All games were played at Air Canada Centre in Toronto and televised to U.S. viewers on the ESPN family of networks (ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNNEWS) … The competition is a joint effort of the National Hockey League Players' Association and the National Hockey League, in cooperation with the International Ice Hockey Federation and its member federations ... The World Cup of Hockey has been conducted on two previous occasions (1996, 2004), with the U.S. winning the first edition in 1996.

World Cup News

Team USA Schedule & Results

Date Opponent/Event Location Result
Fri, Sept. 9 Canada (Pre-Tourn.) Columbus, OH (Nationwide) W, 4-2
Sat., Sept. 10 Canada (Pre-Tourn.) Ottawa, Ont. L, 2-5
Tues., Sept. 13 Finland (Pre-Tourn.) Washington, D.C. (Verizon) W, 3-2
Sat., Sept. 17 Team Europe Toronto (ACC) L, 0-3
Tues., Sept. 20 Canada Toronto (ACC) L, 2-4
Thurs., Sept. 22 Czech Republic Toronto (ACC) L, 3-4

Pre-Game Information

Team USA Schedule & Results

Date Opponent/Event Location Result
Fri, Sept. 9 Canada (Pre-Tourn.) Columbus, OH (Nationwide) W, 4-2
Sat., Sept. 10 Canada (Pre-Tourn.) Ottawa, Ont. L, 2-5
Tues., Sept. 13 Finland (Pre-Tourn.) Washington, D.C. (Verizon) W, 3-2
Sat., Sept. 17 Team Europe Toronto (ACC) L, 0-3
Tues., Sept. 20 Canada Toronto (ACC) L, 2-4
Thurs., Sept. 22 Czech Republic Toronto (ACC) L, 3-4

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