USA Wins Bronze Medal at IIHF Men's World Championship
Alex Galchenyuk (Milwaukee, Wis./Montreal Canadiens) and goaltender John Gibson (Pittsburgh, Pa./Anaheim Ducks) helped the U.S. Men's National Team to a 3-2 shootout victory over Finland here today in the bronze-medal game of the 2013 International Ice Hockey Federation Men's World Championship. In the shootout, Galchenyuk scored on back-to-back attempts, including the game-winner, while Gibson stopped three-of-four Finland shots. In 70 minutes of action, Gibson made 36 saves to help deliver Team USA's first medal since 2004 (bronze) and only third medal in the world championship since 1963.
"I'm so proud of this young group," said Joe Sacco, head coach of the U.S. Men's National Team, whose average age is 24.8. "We came together as a team and this group was able to achieve something only two other teams have done in the last 50 years for our country and that's win a medal. It's not easy. Tonight, we got off to a lead which was important, but Finland came back hard at us, particularly in the third. Then once you get into overtime and a shootout anything can happen. Gibson was outstanding again in goal and it was great to see Galchenyuk score a couple of times in the shootout. I thought we had terrific leadership on this team, and our captain, Paul Stastny, was such a key factor both on and off the ice. You win as a team and ultimately that's why we were successful."
Team USA had a hard-working first shift of the game, resulting in a Craig Smith (Madison, Wis./Nashville Predators/Univ. of Wisconsin) rebound goal just :58 in. David Moss' (Livonia, Mich./Phoenix Coyotes/Univ. of Michigan) shot was deflected in the right circle, Paul Stastny (St. Louis, Mo./Colorado Avalanche/Univ. of Denver) kept the puck moving across the front of the net and Smith swept it around Antti Raanta's right leg.
On the power play, Stastny one-timed a Smith feed into the net at 15:58 to make it 2-0. Jacob Trouba (Rochester, Mich./Winnipeg Jets/Univ. of Michigan) moved the puck from the left point to the left circle, where Smith drew a defender and dished to Stastny in the slot.
Team USA maintained its two-goal lead in the second period as neither team found the scoresheet in the frame.
Lauri Korpikoski deflected a shot from the point into the net at 8:56 of the third period, trimming the USA lead to 2-1.
Ninety seconds later, Gibson made a critical save by dropping his right pad to deny Juhamatta Aaltonen on a breakaway.
Finland knotted the game at 2-2 when Korpikoski scored again, this time on a goalmouth feed from Mikael Granlund at 12:18.
A scoreless 10-minute overtime period sent the game to a three-round shootout.
Shooting first, Team USA missed on its first two opportunities, while Finland scored on its second attempt.
In the third round, Galchenyuk made a quick deke and scored high on the blocker side to extend the game. Gibson forced an extra round of shots when he forced Korpikoski to fire wide.
The shooting order switched for the fourth round. Finland missed and Galchenyuk used the same move as his first attempt to beat Raanta and clinch the bronze medal.
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United States Hockey League Stories from May 19, 2013
- USA Wins Bronze Medal at IIHF Men's World Championship - U.S. National Team
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