Defenseman Louis Belpedio (2014 Draft, third round) assisted on the game-winning goal, and the United States defeated Denmark 4-1 on Thursday to clinch second place in Group A at the 2016 IIHF World Junior Championships.
The win improved the United States to 3-1-0-0, with its lone loss coming against Sweden, who went undefeated in the group stages. The quarterfinal round begins on Saturday.
Heading into the second period tied with Denmark 1-1, Belpedio assisted on a Sonny Milano goal 4:02 into the second period. Belpedio had two points during group play, each coming on game-deciding plays: his assist on Thursday, and the game-winning goal in the United States' tournament-opening, 5-3 win against Canada.
With nine points, the United States finishes second place in Group B, and will play the Czech Republic in the quarterfinal round on Saturday at 12 p.m Central time.
Russia 2, Slovakia 1
Forward Kirill Kaprizov (2015 Draft, fifth round)had two shots on goal as Russia clinched the top spot in Group B with a win against Slovakia on Thursday.
Kaprizov had a goal and two assists during Russia's four group games, helping lead his country to a 3-0-1-0 record, good enough to win its group. Russia will play Denmark in the quarterfinals on Saturday at 6 a.m. Central time.
Eriksson Ek Sits
Forward Joel Eriksson Ek (2015 Draft, first round) did not play for Sweden in its game against Canada Thursday at World Juniors to close out the group stage. Eriksson Ek had skated in each of Sweden's first three games, all victories, and had a team-high 12 shots on goal.
Sweden had already clinched the top spot in Group A prior to its game against Canada, and will play Slovakia on Saturday at 8 a.m. Central time in the quarterfinals of the tournament.