|Jonathan Huberdeau battles for position in front of the net against Italy at the IIHF World Championship (Richard Wolowicz).
The 2014 IIHF Hockey World Championship week two of preliminary competition on Friday and both the United States and Canada squads found themselves celebrating.
The United States (2-1-0-2) got back in the win column after suffering two straight losses, downing Kazakhstan 4-3 in overtime. Jonathan Huberdeau picked up a point in his second straight game in helping Canada (4-0-1-0) rattle off their fourth straight victory as they beat Italy 6-1.
UNITED STATES 4 - KAZAKHSTAN 3 (OT)
Falling in their previous two games, the United States had to come back on two different occasions before outlasting Kazakhstan with a 4-3 overtime victory to end that skid.
The Americans found themselves trailing 1-0 late in the first and 2-1 early in the second but were able to tie the game thanks to the power play as a pair of Predators, Craig Smith and Seth Jones, found the back of the net. Matt Donovan then gave Team USA their first lead of the game with 4:58 left in the second. Kazakhstan had a great chance to tie the game 1:08 into the third but former Panther Tim Thomas (22 saves) stopped Konstantin Romanov on a penalty shot. They wouldn't be denied the equalizer with 6:50 to play as Roman Starchenko netted his second of the game, eventually sending the game into overtime. Jones wouldn't let the Americans lose a third straight however, netting his second of the game 1:05 into the extra session.
Jimmy Hayes finished with three shots on 9:27 of ice time. Vincent Trocheck won five of his eight draws and had two shots on net on 10:36 of ice time while Drew Shore won three of his five face-offs with 13:10 of ice time. The Americans next play Finland on Sunday.
CANADA 6 - ITALY 1
The Red and White Maple Leaf continued to dominate play in winning their fourth straight victory. For the second day in a row, Canada won by a 6-1 final and on Friday it came against Italy. On Thursday, the Canadians used a four-goal third period to pull away from Denmark. This time it was a four-goal second that gave them all the offense they would really need.
Joel Ward's fourth of the tournament gave Canada the lead after the first period. Cody Hodgson netted his first of two 1:39 into the second on the power play and the Canadians turned up the pressure, adding goals from Jason Chimera, Kyle Turris and Hodgson before the 20 minutes was played. David Borelli ended James Reimer's (21 saves) shutout bid 1:12 into the third while Huberdeau set up Brayden Schenn with 3:30 remaining to end the scoring.
Now with three points in the tournament thanks to the assist (1-2-3), Huberdeau finished with two shots on net, was a +2 and recorded 12:08 of ice time. Erik Gudbranson had two shots and was +2 in 16:39 of ice time. Canada will see their toughest test of the tournament to date as they face off against Sweden on Sunday.