GRAND FORKS, N.D. - Joseph Woll (St. Louis, Mo.) stopped 34 shots and six different players scored as the U.S. Men’s National Under-18 Team defeated Sweden, 6-1, here today at Ralph Engelstad Arena. With the win, Team USA improves to 2-0-0-0 (W-OTW-OTL-L).
Team USA opened the scoring late in the first frame when Casey Mittelstadt (Eden Prairie, Minn.) wristed a shot, shortside, into the net from the slot. Logan Brown (Raleigh, N.C.) and Kailer Yamamoto (Spokane, Wash.) assisted.
The United States doubled its lead, 2-0, early in the second period. Adam Fox (Jericho, N.Y.) chipped the puck to Kieffer Bellows (Edina, Minn.) who sprinted into the zone and quickly released a shot that beat Sweden’s Filip Larsson. Under two minutes later, Graham McPhee (Bethesda, Md.) and Ryan Lindgren (Minneapolis, Minn.) converted on a give-and-go for Team USA’s third score. After receiving the puck from Lindgren, McPhee glided along the right side of the ice and found Lindgren charging to the front of the net. Lindgren tipped the centering pass past Larsson to light the lamp. The U.S. pushed its lead to four on a shorthanded tally. Clayton Keller (Swansea, Ill.) spun, turned and found J.D. Greenway (Potsdam, N.Y.), who beat a Swedish defender one-on-one, pulling the puck from forehand to backhand to then knock it past Larsson. Fox also assisted on the play.
The U.S. added two scores in the final period. First, Brown pushed a Swedish player off the puck and chipped it along to Keeghan Howdeshell (Brighton, Mich.) who deked and scored the fifth Team USA marker. Joey Anderson (Roseville, Minn.) potted the sixth for the U.S. when he jammed a rebound into the cage on the power play. Chad Krys (Ridgefield, Conn.) and Keller earned the helpers. Sweden notched a goal midway through the frame off a deflected shot to spoil the shutout bid, but the U.S. won handily, 6-1.
The U.S. Men’s Under-18 National Team continues preliminary play versus Latvia on Sunday, April 17. Puck drop is slated for 4 p.m. ET. The contest can be seen live on the NHL Network.