Five U.S. skaters record multi-point games
PIESTANY, Slovakia — The United States Under-17 Men’s Select Team earned its first victory at the 2018 Five Nations Tournament here today with a 6-2 win over Switzerland at Easton Arena.
Five U.S. skaters recorded multi-point games, including Ben Schoen (Maumee, Ohio), who led all skaters with three points (all assists) and was named the U.S. Player of the Game.
"I liked how we responded after falling behind by a goal," said U.S. head coach Mark Dennehy (Andover, Mass.). "We have to play that way consistently. I think it's a learning experience for some young guys, but I was really happy with how we responded."
Carson Bantle (Onalaska, Wis.) scored twice for the U.S., including the game's opening goal just 1:32 into the first period. After a Nathan Schweitzer (Champlin, Minn.) pass through the neutral zone found Schoen at the Swiss blue line, Bantle drove the net hard and converted a cross-crease pass to give Team USA the lead.
After two Swiss goals to close the first period, the U.S. went into the intermission trailing by one.
Cross Hanas (Highland Village, Texas) tied the contest with 4:29 remaining in the second stanza. After a hard U.S. forecheck caused a Swiss turnover, Hanas collected a loose puck, skated into the slot and fired a wrist shot over the glove of Swiss goaltender Andri Henauer.
Building on momentum from the Hanas goal, the U.S. struck again just 1:39 later as Bantle tipped home a point shot from Schweitzer to put Team USA up by one.
The U.S. took control of the game with three third-period goals from Blake Biondi (Hermantown, Minn.), Jake Ratzlaff (Rosemount, Minn.) and David Ma (Yonkers, N.Y).
In all, nine skaters recorded points for the U.S., while Colin Purcell (Shaker Heights, Ohio) made 11 saves to earn his first win of the tournament.
The U.S. returns to action tomorrow against Germany at 2 p.m. local time (8 a.m. ET).