PLYMOUTH, Mich. - Team USA received scoring from four different skaters as the U.S. National Under-17 Team topped the Czech Republic, 4-2, tonight at USA Hockey Arena. The pre-tournament contest comes just before the 2016 U17 Five Nations Tournament to be held Feb. 9-13.
In the opening frame, Team USA struck first just 3:50 into the period when Max Gildon (Plano, Texas) made a backspin pass to Jacob Tortora (Victor, N.Y.) who carried the puck through center ice and into the offensive zone. Tortora dropped a feed back to Scott Reedy (Prior Lake, Minn.) on the left wing for an wrist-shot snipe. USA continued to control play throughout the period, outshooting the Czechs, 14-5. With 2:46 remaining, Sean Dhooghe (Aurora, Ill.) picked the puck up in the neutral zone and zipped up the left wing, cutting to the net to give the United States a 2-0 advantage to close the period.
Team USA picked up two more tallies in the second period. First, just past the midway point of the frame, on the rush, Quinn Hughes (Orlando, Fla.) slid the puck under the Czech goaltender with Brady Tkachuk (St. Louis, Mo.) screening. Then with under three minutes to play, Evan Barratt (Bristol, Pa.) ripped a point shot top shelf for the fourth USA marker and close the period 4-0 in the USA’s favor.
The Czech Republic got on the board at 10:14 of the final frame, and then cut Team USA’s lead to two with 2:14 on the clock for the 4-2 final score.
U.S. goaltenders Dylan St. Cyr (Northville, Mich.) and Adam Scheel (Lakewood, Ohio) split time in net, playing the opening 40 minutes and closing 20 minutes, respectively. The goaltending duo stopped 12-of-14 shots faced. Team USA outshot the Czech Republic, 46-14.
Team USA opens 2016 Under-17 Five Nations Tournament play Tuesday (Feb. 9) against the Czech Republic. Puck drop is slated for 7 p.m. ET. The game will stream live on FASTHockey.com and broadcast live across the state of Michigan on Comcast CN900. Check local listings for details.