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Team USA stays perfect at World Under-18s

Saturday, 04.14.2012 / 6:54 PM / 2012 NHL Draft

By Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

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Team USA stays perfect at World Under-18s
At Alcaplast Arena in Breclav, Czech Republic, goalie Collin Olson posted his second straight shutout as the U.S. beat the Czech Republic 5-0 on Saturday at the 2012 World Under-18 Championship. Olson, ranked No. 21 among North American goaltenders in NHL Central Scouting's final rankings for the 2012 NHL Draft, turned aside all 17 shots he faced.

Collin Olson posted his second straight shutout as the U.S. beat the Czech Republic 5-0 on Saturday at the 2012 World Under-18 Championship.

Playing in Alcaplast Arena in Breclav, Czech Republic, Olson, ranked No. 21 among North American goaltenders in NHL Central Scouting's final rankings for the 2012 NHL Draft, turned aside all 17 shots he faced.

Top 2013 draft prospect defenseman Seth Jones had a goal and two assists, and Jacob Trouba, Nicolas Kerdiles and Ryan Hartman each had a goal and an assist as the three-time defending champs improved to 2-0 in preliminary-round play.

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At No. 9, Trouba is the highest-rated U.S.-born player in Central Scouting's final ranking of North American skaters. Kerdiles is No. 29.

Jones credited the win to strong team discipline, which kept them out of the penalty box as there was pushing and shoving between both teams after nearly every whistle. The Czechs finished with 31 penalty minutes to just two for the U.S.

"That was our focus coming into the game," Jones told the IIHF website. "We knew the Czechs like get into other teams' heads and try to get you off your game. We just tried to put that stuff to the side and play hockey."

At 2-0, the U.S. leads Group A heading into its third preliminary-round game, Sunday against Denmark. The host Czech Republic next plays Monday, against Canada.

In the second game in Breclav, Artturi Lehkonen scored with 56 seconds left in the second period to lead Finland to a 4-2 upset of Canada.

Joonas Korpisalo, Central Scouting's third-ranked European goaltender, stopped 24 of 26 shots, and Teuvo Teravainen and Ville Pokka -- Finland's top two-rated skaters for the 2012 NHL Draft -- combined for a goal and two assists.

Canada captain Mathew Dumba -- No. 11 on Central Scouting's North American rankings -- had a goal and an assist in the loss.

"We just didn't play very well," Canada coach Jesse Wallin told Hockey Canada's website. "The first period was kind of back and forth. I didn't think we really established the way we wanted to play and then we got up by a goal, we got the late goal in the first period and it's almost like we relaxed too much coming into the second."

In a game at Zimni Stadion in Znojmo, Marcel Kurth scored a pair of power-play goals to lead Germany to a 4-2 upset of Russia. Tim Bender and Frederik Tiffels each had a goal, and goaltender Marvin Cupper stopped 40 of 42 shots.

Bogdan Yakimov had a goal and an assist for Russia. Andrei Vasilevski, Central Scouting's top-ranked European goaltender, made 25 saves on 29 shots.

"It was a good win for the guys, they did well and they should enjoy it for now, but it doesn't mean anything other than a win for us and it's not our final goal," Germany coach Jim Setters told the IIHF website.

In the second game played in Znojmo, Gustav Possler had a hat trick and top-rated European prospect Filip Forsberg had a goal in Sweden's 7-2 rout of Switzerland.

Preliminary-round play continues through Tuesday, with the top three teams in each group advancing into knockout-round play.

Contact Adam Kimelman at akimelman@nhl.com. Follow him on Twitter: @NHLAdamK

 
2012 NHL Draft