Press Release sent to the World of Junior Hockey
PIESTANY, Slovakia – Paul Bittner (Crookston, Minn.) and Kyle Connor (Shelby Township, Mich.) scored, and goaltender Alex Nedeljkovic made 20 saves, but the U.S. Under-18 Select Team dropped a 3-2 overtime decision to Finland in the opening game of the 2013 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament today.
"I'm quite pleased with the effort today," said Head Coach Bob Corkum. "The guys worked hard and stuck with the systems. We generated enough chances to win the game, but we didn't have enough puck luck. I think we got better as the game went on and played our best hockey in the third period. We'll have to duplicate that effort."
Bittner started the scoring 7:54 into the opening period when got a shot past Finland goaltender Kappo Kahkonen.
Then, after Finland struck for two straight goals -- one early in the second period and one midway through the third -- Connor tied the game with a power-play goal with 2:39 remaining in regulation.
Finland took advantage of a power play and scored the game-winner just 59 seconds into overtime.
The U.S. Under-18 Select Team continues play in the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament tomorrow (Aug. 6) against Russia.
(Nathan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)