Photo by Rena Laverty
PLYMOUTH, Mich. – The U.S. National Under-17 Team defeated the Green Bay Gamblers, 2-1, in overtime during a tight matchup at USA Hockey Arena on Saturday night. Brodie Ziemer (Hutchinson, Minn.) sealed the victory in extra time and Christian Humphreys (Pittsburg, Pa.) netted the team’s only goal in regulation.
In a scoreless first period as Team USA saw no shortage of chances, including two breakaway’s from Max Plante (Hermantown, Minn) and Austin Burnevik (Blaine, Minn) near the halfway mark of the period.
It was Green Bay that got on the board first at 12:59 in the second period, making it 1-0 off a wrist shot from defenseman Artyom Levshunov, but Team USA’s Humphreys tied it up a few minutes later.
With 5:49 to go, Logan Hensler (Woodbury, Minn.) made a pass to Noah LaPointe (Hinsdale, Ill.) on the blue line whose wrist shot met Humphreys' stick. He skated toward the left of the net which put pressure on Green Bay netminder Kristoffer Eberly and tapped the puck in to tie things headed into intermission.
Both teams played hard in the third period with goaltenders on both ends of the ice stopping every shot they faced, paving the way for overtime at 1-1.
At 3:02 into extra time, Charlie Cerrato (Fallston, Md.) snatched the puck off a skate deflection from Green Bay and sped into the offensive zone with the Gambler’s Mikey DeAngelo putting the pressure on. Cerrato got a backhander away that Ziemer finished off, winning the game 2-1 in overtime.
The victory marks Team USA’s best record on home ice since moving to Plymouth in 2015, matching the win total of the 2017-18 season at 30.
Jack Parsons (Cortland, N.Y.) started in net for Team USA and stopped 20 shots.
The Under-17 Team closes out the regular season on the road next week for a pair against the Youngstown Phantoms. Both games can be viewed live on FloHockey.