Team USA Rallies to Beat Team Canada in First-Ever IIHF Outdoor Game

Photos: Team USA

44,562 hockey fans braved the snow and sub-zero temperatures at New Era Field in Orchard Park, New York, to witness the first-ever outdoor game played in a IIHF World Championship. Team USA rallied from down 3-1 to win it in a shootout 4-3. Team USA (1-1) was coming off of a disappointing loss to Slovakia less than 18 hours earlier. Team Canada entered the contest 2-0, and had the day-off on Thursday.

Team Canada was awarded the game’s first penalty and they would capitalize. Cale Makar (Avalanche) would pot the power play goal from the top of the right circle at the 4:13 mark of the opening frame.

Team Canada would add to their lead with another power play goal with 4:43 remaining in the first period. Dillon Dube (Flames) would notch his first goal of the tournament to give Canada a 2-0 lead.

The period would conclude with Team Canada leading Team USA 2-0. Team USA outshot Team Canada 11-9 for the first 20 minutes.

Team USA opened the second period with nearly a full two-minute power play, but could not convert on the man-advantage. Team USA led in shots on goal 6-1 through the first 8 minutes of the middle frame.

The snow, which began before the start of the game caused a delay in the action in the second period, in order for crews to remove snow from the ice surface.

Team USA would have a 5-on-3 power play for two minutes with 4:48 left in the middle frame, and this time the Americans would make it count. Kieffer Bellows (Islanders) would cut the Canadians lead to one with a goal from the top of the slot at the 16:27 mark of the second period.

However, Team Canada would answer just 1:12 later with a goal by Boris Katchouk (Lightning) at 17:39 of the middle frame.

The period would end with Team Canada leading 3-1. Team USA outshot Team Canada 13-5 for the second period, and led 24-14 after two periods of play.

Team USA would be awarded the period’s first power play following a boarding call on Team Canada 4:54 into the final frame, and Team USA would capitalize. Scott Perunovich (undrafted) would bang one home from the slot to make it 3-2.

Team USA would tie things up moments later with a close-range score on the doorstop, making it 3-3 at the 6:43 mark of the final frame. Brady Tkachuck (Undrafted) would pot the tying tally on the end of a nice feed from Casey Mittelstadt (Sabres) from below the goal.

The teams would switch ends at the 10-minute mark of the final frame. Team USA led in shots on goal 6-3 through the first 10 minutes of play. Regulation would end with the game tied 3-3. Team USA outshot Team Canada 35-22 in regulation.

The 3-on-3 overtime period would be scoreless. There were 0 shots on goal for the extra frame.

Team USA would win it in the shoot.

By Jon Sorensen


About Jon Sorensen

Jon has been a Caps fan since day one, attending his first game at the Capital Centre in 1974. His interest in the Caps has grown over the decades and included time as a season ticket holder. He has been a journalist covering the team for 10+ years, primarily focusing on analysis, analytics and prospect development.
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3 Responses to Team USA Rallies to Beat Team Canada in First-Ever IIHF Outdoor Game

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