Eight players return from the United States’ 2020 team that left the Czech Republic empty-handed following a disappointing sixth-place finish. Those players, along with the rest of this year’s team, entered a Boxing Day meeting at the 2021 edition with another loss under their belt.
Following a tough 4-3 loss to the Russians on Christmas, the Americans bounced back in dominating fashion as they easily beat the Austrians 11-0 on Boxing Day.
“I was very happy with the response,” said head coach Nate Leaman. “We know we left something on the table last night and they weren’t happy about it all day. … It was good that we faced a little adversity in the first period with only being able to score one on the 23 shots. I’m happy that the guys stuck with it.
“I’m glad that the guys are building the mental toughness to kind of stay with things.”
The United States top line of Trevor Zegras, Arthur Kaliyev and Alex Turcotte — all three returnees — combined for an impressive nine points, including a team-leading four from Zegras (two goals, two assists). Matthew Boldy, who was cut from last year’s squad, potted a hat trick; Brendan Brisson added a pair. Only three players, Landon Slaggert, Cole Caufield and Bobby Brink, did not collect a point in the game.
It was a solid rebound game for the United States, who pushed the Austrians into their own zone from puck drop and had 10 shots by the 10-minute mark of the opening frame; they didn’t record their first shot against Russia until almost 12 minutes in. By the end of the contest, America fired a whopping 73 shots on goal, 58 of them stopped by netminder Sebastian Wraneschitz, who left the game in the third due to cramps. The U.S. also hit a bunch of posts — so, needless to say, the offense was firing on all cylinders as the majority of the goals happened within home plate.
Defensively, the Americans stymied the Austrians and their top talent Marco Rossi, who only had two shots on goal. Dustin Wolf got the start in net for the U.S. and stopped all 10 shots he faced for the first American shutout since 2017. The win was also the second-largest margin of victory in a shutout.
After back-to-back matches, the U.S. has two days off before facing the Czech Republic on Tuesday.
Sporting News had all the action as the United States bounced back with a commanding 11-0 win over Austria.
(All times Eastern)
USA vs. Austria scores, highlights from 2021 World Juniors preliminary game
Final score: USA 11, Austria 0
Third period: USA 11, Austria 0
12:00 a.m. — With 67 seconds left in the game Patrick Moynihan makes a pass in the neutral zone and takes a blindsided late hit to the head from Philipp Wimmer. He’s tossed from the game and will surely face a suspension.
11:57 p.m. — Austria gets a power play. They now have 10 shots on net, while the US has 72.
11:45 p.m. — GOAL. Welcome to the game Bradner, try to stop this pass across the slot from Brock Faber to a wide-open Sam Colangelo. The latter buries the one-timer for a birthday goal. USA leads 11-0.
11:43 p.m. — Sebastian Wraneschitz makes a great save as he slides across to stop Bobby Brink and he stays down, grabbing the back of his left leg. He leaves the game stopping 58 of 68 shots. Jakob Brandner comes in.
11:36 p.m. — GOAL. Matthew Boldy completes the hat trick as Trevor Zegras finds him cutting to the net. Boldy was cut from last year’s team, and he’s showing why that was a mistake. USA leads 10-0.
11:35 p.m. — Make that 60 shots on net.
11:31 p.m. — GOAL. Brendan Brisson gets his second of the game on a garbage goal as he cleans up the rebound. USA leads 9-0.
11:29 p.m. — GOAL. Brett Berard turns on the jets and scores. USA leads 8-0.
11:27 p.m. — Third period underway. USA has 52 shots (omg emoji) to Austria’s five.
Second period: USA 7, Austria 0
11:05 p.m. — PP GOAL. Seconds into a power play, the point shot Arthur Kaliyev handcuffs the goalie and Matthew Boldy knocks in the loose puck. USA leads 7-0.
10:58 p.m. — Best chance for the Austrians as Marco Rossi feeds a wide-open Tim Harnisch in the slot — but he rings it off the post.
10:57 p.m. — GOAL. The Matts connect. Matthew Beniers (top prospect for 2021) with a nifty pass across the Royal Road to Matthew Boldy, who buries it. USA leads 6-0.
10:51 p.m. — GOAL. Zegras again. This time he finds daylight above the shoulder of the netminder. What a shot by the Ducks prospect. USA leads 5-0.
10:49 p.m. — Halfway mark of the game and the U.S. is outshooting Austria 34-4.
10:46 p.m. — PP GOAL. Brendan Brisson (VGK) fires the one-timer from the right circle. A blast that goes right under the glove. USA leads 4-0.
10:44 p.m. — Add Matt Boldy (MIN) to the “ringing it off the pipe party.” That may be about five now for the United States.
10:44 p.m. — USA gets a power play. They struggled with man advantage against Russia.
10:40 p.m. — GOAL. John Farinacci (ARI), who scored Friday night as well, flips it up top over the glove of Sebastian Wraneschitz. USA leads 3-0.
10:38 p.m. — GOAL. Trevor Zegras (ANA) gets the puck in the right circle and fires the shot from the dot for the goal. USA leads 2-0.
10:31 p.m. — Second period underway.
First period: USA 1, Austria 0
10:14 p.m. — Americans outshoot the Austrians 22-3 in the first period. What a turn of events from Friday.
10:12 p.m. — Cam York (PHI) rings one off the post. Americans buzzing as time is winding down in the period.
10:11 p.m. — Americans are flying and have another chance as it gets through the netminder and sits in the paint before Luis Lindner bats it away.
10:08 p.m. — Trevor Zegras (ANA) zings one off the pipe. Play continues and the Americans crash the net and try to push the puck in (shot did go off the post and was refereed). Referee (is Wes McCauley in the bubble?) says, “We’re good. Thank you.”
10:04 — GOAL. Americans have a good zone entry and the pass appears to go off the stick and skate of Drew Helleson (COL), heads to the net and squeaks past goalie Sebastian Wraneschitz. (BTW, this goal was credited to Alex Turcotte, Arthur Kaliyev and I think Trevor Zegras too before going to the rightful owner). USA leads 1-0.
9:56 p.m. — Cole Caufield (MTL) has an empty net chance as the goalie is out of position but a great play by the defenseman Philipp Wimmer.
9:53 p.m. — At the 10-minute mark of the first, the Americans get their 10th shot on goal.
9:50 p.m. — Johnson takes an undisciplined penalty but Austrian could not capitalize.
9:44 p.m. — The majority of the game so far has been spent in the Austrian zone. Through the first five minutes, shots are 6-1 in favor of the United States. Friday night they didn’t get the first shot until more than 10 minutes in.
9:39 p.m. — Arthur Kaliyev (LAK) gets a good chance. USA already looking a little better than Friday night.
9:37 p.m. — Game on. Referees welcoming teams at the faceoff dot may be my favorite thing of the tournament.
World Juniors 2021: Latest news