In the face to face duel for the 1st place of the Group A, American and Czech players met in the very last game of this year´s group stage. The game was decided in the middle period when American captain Poehling scored a hat-trick within only 11 minutes. Czech players will play their semifinal game against Sweden, Team USA will challenge Russian players.
Penalties: 6:7. PP goals: 1:2. SH goals: 0:0.
Referees: Hejduk, Hradil – Tošenovjan, Hlavatý. Attendance: 2103.
The second period could be called as a time of Ryan Poehling. This young American player scored a hat-trick in 11 minutes. Firstly, he finished a breakaway situation 2 on 1 which was played also with Pastujov. In the 39th minute he did not give a slight chance to Czech goalie with his quick and precise shot from the right circle and after another 63 seconds he simply punished troubles in Czech games.
Home players answered only by Ostap Safin who scored his success between the 1st and 2nd Poehling’s goals. Despite Czech effort in the last period the home players did not get back into the game by scoring the contact goals so they lost 2:4 to Team USA.
American players therefore won their group and can already look forward the next game - surely spicy duel with Team Russia.
Czech team will face Sweden team in semifinals.
Václav Varaďa, head coach of Czech Republic: There was a lot in stake. I think that we played how we should have in the third period. The team which makes more mistake usually loses. The key moment of the game was when we let in two quick goals at the end of the second period despite there were five of our players trying to defend two opponents. It is a shame that we did not manage to keep the game close because they looked pretty nervous at the beginning of the third period. Today, we also tried to save some energy and give a chance to the guys who did not play a lot before.
Clark Donatelli, head coach of USA: I keep talking about our leadership group and they are there. I thought the guys played really well, they played fast hockey, executed the game plan and we also had some balanced scoring from more lines tonight. We just keep getting better and better every game. Now we are looking forward to play against Russia, they are going to be a good team. We are going to take our rest tomorrow and get the boys ready and focused again.