The U.S. Junior Select Team and Switzerland each notched victories in the preliminary round of the 2010 World Junior A Challenge on Monday at the South Okanagan Event Centre in Penticton, B.C.
Jimmy Mullin (Lightning), named the Player of the Game, scored three goals and goalie Zane Gothberg
(Bruins) made 23 saves, including three breakaway attempts, to lead the Americans to a 6-1 victory over Canada East.
"We ran into some penalty trouble early, but started to find our game in the second and third periods (when the U.S. outscored CE, 6-1)," U.S. Junior Select head coach P.K. O'Handley said. "We've been working hard to develop chemistry, and we hope to bring this energy throughout the rest of the tournament."
The U.S., which will next face Sweden on Wednesday, has won the last two WJAC golds. Canada
Colten St. Clair
, Team USA, Fargo Force USHL
East, which received its lone goal off the stick of Evan Rodrigues (2011 draft eligible), is slated to play Tuesday against the Swedes. U.S. captain Colten St. Clair
(2011 draft eligible) and teammates Ryan Dzingel
(2011 draft eligible) and Garrett Allen
(2011 draft eligible) all had two assists.
The U.S. roster, incidentally, is made up entirely of players from the United States Hockey League.
Switzerland, meanwhile, had a memorable debut in the tournament after scoring a 5-4 victory over Canada West when Nicholas Steiner (2011 draft eligible) connected for the game-winner while on the power-play 1:45 into overtime. Canada West actually erased deficits of 3-0 and 4-2 with a four-goal third period. Penticton native Mark MacMillan
(Canadiens) scored twice in the third as CW pulled even before the game entered OT.
Swiss forward Ryan McGregor
(2011 draft eligible) was named Player of the Game for the victors and MacMillan received similar honors for Canada West.
The Swiss return to action Tuesday against Russia. The Russians will then meet Canada West on Wednesday in the preliminary-round finale.
Monday, 8 November, 2010
CAN E 1 - USA 6
CAN W 4 - SUI 5 (OT)
Tuesday, 9 November, 2010
SWE - CAN E
SUI - RUS
Wednesday, 10 November, 2010
USA - SWE
RUS - CAN W