Photo by Ronald Hansel, Juniorský hokej
Romanshorn, Switzerland - Cole Eiserman (Newburyport, Mass.) capped off a hat trick in the opening 20:49 of the game, and tallied a fourth in the third, as the U.S. National Under-17 Team opened round robin play at the Five Nations tournament with a 8-3 win over Sweden.
Team USA got on the board quick in the first as Eiserman opened the scoring, :52 seconds in. Max Plante (Hermantown, Minn.) connected with Eiserman in the defensive zone as the winger dashed through the neutral zone. A failed deke turned into an opportunity as a loose puck was poked by Plante into the slot where Eiserman buried the shot past Swedish netminder Lukas Hoglind.
Eiserman and Team USA kept it rolling as he potted his second goal 2:46 after his initial tally. Cole Hutson (Barrington, Ill.) sped up the ice past a forechecking Swedish forward and crossed the blue line. Eiserman was by his side and received the puck outside of the face-off circle and ripped a shot into the back of the net.
Eiserman capped off his hat trick :50 seconds into the second period on the power play. Back-and-forth passing from James Hagens (Hauppauge, N.Y.) and Hutson opened up the ice for Eiserman to sneak behind Sweden and set himself up at the face-off dot. A quick pass from Hutson landed on the blade of Eiserman as he finished off the goal.
Sweden got on the board after Melker Sigurd capitalized off an offensive zone draw to cut Team USA’s lead to two.
Sam Laurila (Moorhead, Minn.) regained the three-goal lead at the 11:31 mark in the middle frame. Kristian Epperson (Mequon, Wis.) corralled the puck and spun around before he found Laurila on the wing who blasted his shot past Hoglind.
Christian Humphreys (Pittsburgh, Pa.) made it 5-1 in favor of the U.S. It was another power-play tally for Team USA as Lucas Van Vliet (Livonia, Mich.) surveyed the ice and connected with Humphreys across the ice who had an open net to work with and score.
Eiserman made it goal number four on the day with another tally in the opening minutes of a period. Hagens intercepted the puck and found Eiserman who had clean ice in front of him. He was quickly challenged by a Swedish defender coming out of the penalty box but dangled around him and fired it into the net.
Jack Berglund kept it during an odd-man rush and put the puck into the back of the net with 15:22 to play.
Team USA once again found themselves on the power play with ample amounts of ice to work with. An Eiserman shot was blocked aside and picked up by Epperson who took it around the net and fired a backhand pass to Ziemer on the crease. Ziemer converted on his opportunity and put the U.S. lead to 7-2.
Sweden got their third on the board when Gustav Sjoqvist put on through 1:29 after Ziemer’s tally. Austin Baker (White Lake, Mich.) rounded out the scoring in the final minutes of the game to assist in Team USA's 8-3 win.
Jack Parsons (Cortland, N.Y.) started in net for Team USA.
The Under-17 Team continues the Five Nations Tournament tomorrow against Finland, with puck drop set for 9:00 a.m. ET. Tomorrow's game can be streamed free here along with live stats found here.