Photo by Rena Laverty
ST. PAUL, Minn. - The U.S. National Under-18 Team jumped out to an early 3-0 lead and never looked back as they snapped a five-game skid with a 9-1 victory over the Hamline Pipers at TRIA Rink Thursday evening.
Eight different Team USA skaters scored and the U18s outshot Hamline by a 62-10 final margin.
Landon Slaggert (South Bend, Ind.) notched the game's first goal less than 90 seconds into the contest. Tyler Kleven (Fargo, N.D.) took the initial shot from the right point that was saved, but the rebound sat on the goalline and Slaggert tapped in for a 1-0 USA lead. Luke Tuch (Baldwinsville, N.Y.) picked up the secondary assist on the opening goal.
Dylan Peterson (Roseville, Calif.) doubled the lead at 6:43 of the 1st with his sixth score of the season. Zakary Karpa (Newport Beach, Calif.) spurred a 2-on-1 when he fed Hunter Strand (Anchorage, Alaska) with a pass down the middle of the ice. The Notre Dame commit slid his pass to Peterson at the bottom of the left circle where he connected for a 2-0 lead.
Team USA extended the advantage to 3-0 midway through the period when Tanner Latsch (Muskegon, Mich.) scored his sixth goal of the season. Hunter McKown (San Jose, Calif.) centered a feed for Daniyal Dzhaniyev (Brooklyn, N.Y.), whose shot rang off the post. Latsch was waiting for the rebound and wristed his shot past the Pipers goaltender.
Hamline's Tyler Nyman got his team on the board in the middle period, but Chase Yoder (Fairview, Texas) restored the three-goal advantage with less than three minutes to play in the period. Yoder finished a pretty passing display set up from Matthew Beniers (Hingham, Mass.) and Brett Berard (East Greenwich, R.I.)
Berard and Beniers each netted multi-point nights when Berard converted on his 14th goal of the season early in the final period. Beniers and Jacob Truscott (Port Huron, Mich.) collected the helpers on the play.
Slaggert and Thomas Bordeleau (Houston, Texas) ran a perfectly executed 2-on-1 break that ended with Bordeleau potting his shot in the top corner for a 6-1 lead at 9:03 of the 3rd.
Strand, Berard and Karpa all scored in a four-minute span late in regulation to end the game at a 9-1 final.
USA goaltender Noah Grannan (Germantown, Wis.) made nine saves on 10 Pipers shot attempts as he picked up his ninth win of the season.
The U18s continue their Minnesota road trip tomorrow night against the Minnesota Golden Gophers. Puck drop is slated for 8:00 p.m. ET at 3M Arena at Mariucci in Minneapolis.