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USA Falls to Finland in IIHF Men’s Worlds Quarterfinals

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Team USA Falls to Finland, 2-0, in Men’s Worlds Quarterfinals

COLOGNE, Germany — Jimmy Howard (Syracuse, N.Y./Detroit Red Wings/University of Maine) made 18 saves, but the U.S. Men’s National Team fell to Finland, 2-0, in the quarterfinals here at the 2017 International Ice Hockey Federation Men’s World Championship at LANXESS Arena.

Team USA finished the world championship with a 6-0-0-2 (W-OTW-OTL-L) mark after tying a U.S. record with six consecutive wins in the preliminary round en route to finishing atop Group A.

“It goes without saying we’re bitterly disappointed,” said Jeff Blashill, head coach of the 2017 U.S. Men’s National Team. “We believed that this team had the ability to win the tournament. They are a great group who cared, were selfless and played some great hockey. Unfortunately, Finland was better than we were today and I congratulate them.”

Neither team scored in the opening frame as Team USA held an 8-6 advantage in shots on goal entering the first intermission. The best chance for either side came on a breakaway attempt by Finland’s Juhamatti Aaltonen with just under five minutes remaining in the period, but Howard made a sprawling pad save to keep the game scoreless.

After a pair of point-blank saves by Howard, Mikko Rantenen buried a rebound on the power play to give Finland a 1-0 lead 1:01 into the second period.

Both teams failed to convert power-play opportunities in the final 11:21 of the second stanza as Finland carried the one-goal advantage into the third period.

Finland made it a two-goal game 6:49 into the final frame when Joonas Kemppainen finished a two-on-one rush.

Team USA pulled Howard for the extra attacker for the majority of the final three minutes of play, but was unable to cut into the Finnish lead.

  • Jimmy Howard was named U.S. Player of the Game
  • Team USA outshot Finland, 26-20
  • The U.S. was 0-for-1 on the power play, while Finland finished 1-for-6
  • Johnny Gaudreau, Dylan Larkin and Anders Lee were named Team USA’s three best players of the tournament