Tuesday, January 3, 2012

USA U17 Team advances to the U17 World Challenge Championship Game

Today's USA VS. Sweden Semifinal Game of the U17 World Challenge Tournament in Windsor, Ontario was mostly an uneventful game with both teams afraid to attack at times and with both teams playing for the OT, then when the Game got to OT, it felt like that Sweden was just playing to get the Shootout.

For the Americans, a smart & speedy game was played extremely well where each team had 6 penalties (12 Minutes for the USA & 20 Minutes for SWE) where both goalies in Sionas & Demko had to make some excellent saves in this low scoring affair.

Now that the Americans have clinched the Championship Game for tomorrow night, they will take on Russia who just defeated CAN Ontario also in OT 4-3 in a game that ended just a few minutes ago.

From Windsor, Ontario: Evan Allen & Anthony Lewis each scored shootout goals, as the U.S. National U17 Team earned a SO Victory over Sweden 2-1, in the 2012 World Under 17 Hockey Challenge Semifinals here this evening at the WFCU Center (Home of the Windsor Spitfires/OHL). With the win, Team USA Improves to 4-0-0-1 and advances to the championship game against the CAN Ontario VS. Russia Semifinal Winner.

"It is a great feeling to be playing tomorrow in the Title Game," said Don Granato, head coach of the USA U17 Team. "We have to rest up and be ready for an exceptional team tomorrow in the final."

Team USA had 8 shots on goal in the opening frame, but couldn't put the puck past Swedish Net-minder Ebbe Sionas, Thatcher Demko turned aside both shots he faced in the period and the teams entered the first intermission scoreless.

Sweden seized the lead off shorthanded breakaway at 17:20 of the 2nd period. The U.S. Recorded nine shots on goal in the frame, but didn't score and trailed Sweden 1-0, after two periods.

Michael McCarron tied the game for the U.S. at 3:10 of the 3rd. Scott Savage & Dawson Cook collected assists on the tally. The goal would stand as the lone tally in the period in the game and contest was sent into a 10 minute overtime.

The U.S. Pressured Sweden in the OT Session, firing eight shots on net, while holding Sweden to three. Neither team potted the game-winning goal and the contest would be decided in a best-of-three shootout.

Demko turned aside Sweden's first shooter with a stick save. Allen skated in next for Team USA and slipped the puck past Sionas gave the U.S. a one goal advantage. Demko then made a sprawling pad save on the next Swedish Shooter to preserve the lead for Team USA. Shooting next for Team USA, Louis scored with a wrist shot into the top of the net to secure the victory for Team U.S, as it defeated Sweden 2-1.

Demko turned aside 22 shots for Team USA in the victory, while Sionas made 38 saves for Sweden for Sweden in the loss.

Notes: The USA National U17 Team will face the CAN Ontario VS. Russia Winner tomorrow (Jan. 4) at 7 PM EST.   The game will be held at the WFCU Center in Windsor, Ontario (Home of the Windsor Spitfires/OHL).    Thatcher Demko was named Team USA's Player of the Game.    The U.S. Went 0/4 on the Power Play, while Sweden went 0/5 with the man advantage.     Team USA recorded 39 shots on goal, while Sweden had 23.    Click here for Team USA's Full Roster.     The 2012 World U17 Hockey Challenge includes 2 pools of 5 teams each from CAN Atlantic, Germany, CAN Pacific, Russia, CAN West & the USA.   Exclusive videos will be posted on the USA Hockey Youtube Channel under the World U17 Challenge play list.   Follow @USAHockeyScores on twitter for live scoring updates during the tournament. Scores will be designated with #U17CHAL.    All games during the World U17 Challenge will be available via webcast at Fast Hockey  For additional coverage, visit USA Hockey National Team Development Program Facebook Page.    The USA National U17 & U18 Teams train with the IntelliGym, a revolutionary new software program released on October 1, 2010 that trains hockey sense. To learn more, visit www.usahockeyintelligym.com

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