YOUNGSTOWN, OH – With the game tied with three minutes remaining in the first period, Team USA scored four straight goals over the next five minutes of game action to down the Youngstown Phantoms (5-5-2-1, 13 points) 8-5 Friday night at the Covelli Centre.
“Eight is too many,” said Phantoms Head Coach Brad Patterson. “Every time we seemed to give them momentum I felt like we were able to take it back for good stretches, but we can’t afford to give up the opportunities that we did.”
USA opened the scoring at 7:02 of the first period when Tyler Weiss converted on a rebound of DJ King’s point shot. Youngstown tied it at 11:07 with a powerplay goal from Curtis Hall. Hall fired home a rebound for his seventh goal of the year, tying the game at 1.
USA regained the lead at 13:06 when Ty Emberson was able to sneak a shot from the point through traffic and past Ivan Prosvetov (8 saves) to put USA back in front 2-1. The Phantoms tied the game at 16:58 thanks to Matthew Barry’s third goal of the season.
Team USA scored the next four goals, putting this contest out of reach for Youngstown. Jack DeBoer at 18:27 and Joel Farabee at 18:54 put USA up 4-2 at the first intermission. Patterson put Wouter Peeters (13 saves) in net to start the second period for the Phantoms, but Adam Samuelsson scored on the power play at 2:12 and Oliver Wahlstrom converted shorthanded at 3:27 to give USA a commanding 6-2 lead.
Youngstown scored the next two goals, drawing within 6-4, but could get no closer. Matt Thomson scored his league-leading fifth powerplay goal of the season at 3:56 with a drag-and-shoot from the top of the right circle, and Jake Gingell got his first of the year off a nice centering feed from Max Ellis at 6:09. USA scored the next two goals to stretch the lead back to four by the second intermission: Jake Pivonka beat Peeters at 13:51 and Trevor Janicke pushed a puck over the line for a power playgoal during a net-front scrum at 19:11 to give USA an 8-4 lead at the break. In total, eight different USA skaters accounted for the eight goals. Chase Gresock scored the final tally of the night, firing home his own rebound for a powerplay goal at 4:25 of the third period.
Youngstown returns to the ice tomorrow night to host the defending-Clark Cup champion Chicago Steel. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:05pm Eastern and broadcasts will be available on YPHR and HockeyTV.
By the Numbers
Shots – 34
Saves – 21
Power Play – 2/6
Penalty Kill – 4/6
Goals – Barry, Gresock, Hall, Thomson
Assists – Barry, Ellis, Gresock, Kislin, Metsa, Regush
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Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, the USHL celebrates its 16th season as the nation's only Tier I junior hockey league in 2017-18. 49 players were chosen in the 2017 NHL Draft and more than 400 players on team rosters this season committed to NCAA Division I schools, further establishing the USHL as the world’s foremost producer of junior hockey talent.
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