Saturday, January 2, 2010

Live Blog - WJC Quarterfinal: USA vs. Finland

First Period
0:00 - Mike Lee starting in net for USA...he's been the weaker of the 2 netminders in my opinion.

2:14 - Kyle Palmieri scores on a rush to put USA up 1-0.  Assists to McRae and Schroeder.

5:44 - Strong backcheck by Chris Kreider to break up a Finland odd man rush.

6:33 - PPG by Matt Donovan puts USA up 2-0.  Kreider had set up in the slot and drew the attention of 2 Finnish defenders allowing Donovan to sneak in from the point and tap home a cross-ice pass.  Finns were down a man for a Too Many Men call.  Assists to Schroeder and Stepan.  Schroeder just tied Jeremy Roenick for the all-time lead in points for USA in junior play with 25.

20:00 - USA controlled play for most of the period, but goes into the intermission up 2-0 and tied 7-7 in shots.  Ryan Bourque had a strong shift with Palmieri and Schroeder to end the period.  Kreider has been doing a good job of using his size and speed to create room in the corners so far tonight.  Stepan continuing his poise on the puck.

Second Period
2:15 - USA controlling play, but not spending a whole lot of time in the Finnish zone.

4:40 - Hard forecheck by Chris Kreider creates a scoring chance for USA, but Morin is stopped in front.

9:37 - Derek Stepan finishes a good hard check on a Finnish blueliner, who stays down and later goes off to the locker room.

10:48 - On consecutive plays, Bourque and Kreider both do a good job of creating some offense in the zone for USA.  Then Kreider is stopped on a wraparound.

12:51 - Danny Kristo drives to the net from the half boards, then dishes to Jerry D'Amigo who lifts it over the Finnish goalie. 3-0 USA.

15:17 - Eero Elo gets Finland on the board by following his shot to the net and putting the rebound over Lee's shoulder.  Assists to Kivisto and Lujonen.

19:35 - Ryan Bourque heads to the penalty box for tripping.  He skated to the front of his own net to defend, but clearly took down the Finnish attacker.

update - Stepan was given the 2nd assist on D'Amigo's goal.  That gives him 11 points for the tournament, which leads all players.

Third Period
1:45 - Kreider helps kill off the end of Bourque's minor by chipping the puck down ice.  A minute later he uses his speed to chase down a dump in and get it to Morin.  Kreider then drives to the net, takes a feed and buries it high glove side. 4-1 USA.  Assists to Morin and Jenks.

2:54 - Bourque lays a huge open ice hit on a Finnish attacker.

5:07 - Sloppy play in the defensive zone by Team USA, but Lee makes a couple of nice saves to maintain the 3 goal lead.

8:43 - The announcers just described the past few minutes as "sort of like ping pong in the neutral zone with not much puck possession.  Team USA has gotten away from their game a bit."  Seconds later, Lee makes the save of the game after a Finish forward was left alone in the slot.

14:31 - Lee lets a shot slip through him and Iiro Pakarinen slams it home.  4-2 USA.  the Finns look to have gained a step in the past 2 minutes.  Assists to Ikonen and Sointu

15:47 - Palmieri sent off for goalie interference after bowling over Finland's goalie.  This is going to be a huge PK for team USA in terms of control of the game.

18:25 - Timeout finland.  USA killed off the entire 2 minutes as Lee made a few more big saves.  Finnish goalie on the bench in favor of an extra skater.

19:07 - Jerry D'Amigo makes a heads up play to block a shot at the point, chase the puck down and put it into the empty net.  Goal is unassisted.

19:16 - Danny Kristo skates in and puts another one in the net.  Assists to Schroeder and Carlson.  With the assist, Schroeder is now the all-time leader in points for USA.

USA 6, Finland 2: Big win tonight for Team USA despite playing far from their best hockey.  They have a quick turnaround, as they'll take on Sweden tomorrow night at 9pm ET in the semifinals.  The winner of that game will play the winner of Canada and Switzerland, who used a 3rd periot comeback and overtime winner to upset Russia in the other quarterfinal.  Mike Lee came up big in net, making 42 saves on 44 Finland shots, and was deservingly named USA's Player of the Game.  It's really nice to see some of the USA players singing along as the national anthem is played postgame.

Rangers prospects: Kreider again had a very strong game and is tied with Danny Kristo for the team lead in goals with 5.  He's had a very strong tournament thus far and I can't help but to be excited about the idea of him wearing a Rangers jersey in a couple of years.  I was much more impressed with Ryan Bourque than Derek Stepan in this looked to me like Stepan came out a bit flat tonight, but I'll look for him to rebound with a strong game tomorrow night.  Bourque played a more physical game and did a good job at both ends of the ice.

No comments:

Post a Comment