Team USA defeated Team Canada 5-4 in a shootout to capture the gold medal at the 2017 World Junior Hockey Championship on Thursday night in Montreal.
Tyler Terry scored the only goal in the shootout, his fourth shootout goal in two days, and London Knights’ goalie Tyler Parsons did not allow any of the five Canadian shooters to score.
The teams had played 80 minutes as closely as any two teams could, both having glorious chances denied in the overtime period.
The game began at a pace that was perhaps even more frantic than the ones set by Wednesday’s semi-finals and never really slowed down.
Two close chances at the Team Canada end of the ice almost right away failed to produce anything for early for Team USA.
Canada’s first really good chance found the back of the net as Thomas Chabot completed a perfect run of at least a point in every game at this year’s tournament, firing home a setup from Mathieu Joseph and Matthew Barzal at 4:38.
Jeremy Lauzon made it 2-0 as he corralled a puck that was batted out of the air and ripped it past U.S. goalie and London Knight, Tyler Parsons.
Team USA cut Canada’s lead in half 3:04 into the second period as Charlie McAvoy wristed a shot over the glove of Carter Hart, who had been perfect in the Canada net since replacing Connor.
A U.S. power play goal tied the game as Adam Fox’s shot was deflected past Hart by Kieffer Bellows at 9:30 of the second period.
Back-to-back power plays for Team Canada in the later stages of the second produced two good scoring chances and two saves from Parsons and the game entered the final period tied 2-2.
It took just over seven minutes to double the offensive output.
Canada’s power play counted early on after Bellows hit Mathieu Joseph knee on knee. Joseph left the ice limping and actually went to the Canadian dressing room momentarily, but was back in time to watch Jake Bean keep a puck in at the left point and feed Nicolas Roy. The Chicoutimi Sagueneens’ forward snapped a puck off the goal post and in to put Canada back in front by a goal.
Then Joseph returned to the ice, caught up to a loose puck and got to the net to put Canada ahead 4-2.
Bellows atoned for his penalty moments later and took some of the sound out of the crowd in Montreal as he scored for Team USA to make it 4-3.
Ottawa Senators’ prospect Colin White tipped in a pass at the 7:08 mark to keep a wild third period rolling and tie the score 4-4.
That’s where the score stayed until overtime.
As tense as the first six minutes and 46 seconds were, things hit a new level when Team USA took a took a too many men on the ice penalty. Team Canada puts six pucks at the American net on the man advantage, but could not score.
With just under six minutes to go, Team USA had a huge chance in front and could not jam or whack the puck in as Chabot got his stick on a puck before Jordan Greenway could push it across the goal line.
Canada got a final two chances before the final second of overtime had elapsed. Mitchell Stephens just put a puck wide and then Noah Juulsen sent a puck at the U.S. net and into the equipment of Parsons.
Team Canada outshot Team USA 17-7 in the overtime period.
It was Team USA’s first gold medal victory since 2013 in Ufa, Russia.
Photo Credit: (Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)