International Ice Hockey Federation

Team USA in shape

Team USA in shape

Defending champs win Four Nations Tournament

Published 10.11.2014 19:59 GMT+1 | Author Martin Merk
Team USA in shape
Team USA forward Austin Matthews is expected to play his second U18 World Championship next spring in Switzerland. Photo: Richard Wolowicz / HHOF-IIHF Images
Team USA remains a force in U18 competition. That also goes for the Four Nations Tournament that was played in Sundsvall.

In the northern Swedish city that gave us Henrik Zetterberg and Fredrik Modin it was the Swedes who were the toughest competition for the reigning U18 world champions as both teams entered the last day undefeated. Team USA faced little challenge in the games against Finland and Switzerland, which they won 8-1 and 7-1 respectively.

Sweden started with a 4-1 victory against Switzerland before edging Finland 6-5 in a game that saw the Finns gain the lead three times and Julius Nattinen tie the game for Finland with 90 seconds left in regulation time with his second marker. But Linus Olund scored Sweden’s game-winner at 4:37 of overtime gave Sweden the win and eventually second place in the tournament.

The game for first place between the U.S. and Sweden was a tight contest as well. Goals from Oliver Erixon, Philip Magnusson and Carl Grundstrom gained Sweden a 3-2 first-period lead while Auston Matthews and Grant Gabriele tied the game twice for the Americans. The game turned in the second period when Team USA dominated the play and earned goals from Christian Evers and Jack Roslovic for a 4-3 lead. Colin White made it a two-goal margin early in the third period.

Grundstrom replied with Sweden’s fourth goal and his second of the game but Matthews scored the last goal of the game at 9:44 of the third period with his second marker for the final score of 6-4.

Finland finished in third place thanks to a 5-4 victory against Switzerland. The Swiss outshot the Finns 30-28 and tied the game three times but the Finns decided the game thanks to a strong second period.

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Matthews was the scoring leader of the tournament with nine points (3+6) followed by Finland’s Nattinen (3+5) and Roslovic (4+3), who was also the top goal scorer.

Two other top nations played a series of exhibition games in the Czech Republic. The hosts started with a 2-1 win but Russia showed a strong reacted the day after by blanking the Czech 7-0 and winning the third game 1-0.

Germany showed off with what looked to be a strong class of U18 players at the Four Nations Tournament in Trnava where they beat Denmark (6-1), Belarus (5-4) and eventually host Slovakia (4-1). 17-year-old Bad Nauheim native Julian Napravnik, who plays for Adler Mannheim, was the dominating forward with six goals and three assists in three games.

Belarus was another pleasant surprise. The country invested a lot in building new ice rinks and new hockey programs. Will it now start to pay dividends? The Belarusians started with an upset win against Slovakia. Outshooting the hosts 38-33, Belarus was behind 3-0 when the Patsenkin twins started their show. First Alexei Patsenkin scored twice, then Alexander Patsenkin tied the game with 37 seconds left in regulation time and scored the game winner in the shootout. The Patsenkin magic wasn’t enough to defeat Germany but the Belarusians won against Denmark, 4-2, to claim second place.

In another tournament Austria won on home ice in Telfs ahead of neighbours Slovenia, Italy and Hungary. Norway won two out of three games in a series of exhibition games against Latvia while France won two out of three games against Poland.

Four Nations Tournament in Sweden
7 Nov.   Sundsvall (SWE)   Finland v USA   1-8
7 Nov.   Sundsvall (SWE)   Sweden v Switzerland   4-1
8 Nov.   Sundsvall (SWE)   USA v Switzerland   7-1
8 Nov.   Sundsvall (SWE)   Sweden v Finland   6-5 OT
9 Nov.   Sundsvall (SWE)   Switzerland v Finland   4-5
9 Nov.   Sundsvall (SWE)   Sweden v USA   4-6
Standings: 1. USA, 2. Sweden 5, 3. Finland 4, 4. Switzerland 0.
Exhibition games in the Czech Republic
7 Nov.   Litomericich (CZE)   Czech Rep. v Russia   2-1
8 Nov.   Kralupech nad Vltavou (CZE)   Czech Rep. v Russia   0-7
9 Nov.   Litomericich (CZE)   Czech Rep. v Russia   0-1
Four Nations Tournament in Slovakia
6 Nov.   Trnava (SVK)   Germany v Denmark   6-1
6 Nov.   Trnava (SVK)   Slovakia v Belarus   3-4 SO
7 Nov.   Trnava (SVK)   Belarus v Germany   4-5
7 Nov.   Trnava (SVK)   Slovakia v Denmark   4-0
8 Nov.   Trnava (SVK)   Denmark v Belarus   2-4
8 Nov.   Trnava (SVK)   Slovakia v Germany   1-4
Standings: 1. Germany 9, 2. Belarus 5, 3. Slovakia 4, 4. Denmark 0.
U18 Austrian Hockey Board Tournament in Austria
6 Nov.   Telfs (AUT)   Austria v Slovenia   1-0
6 Nov.   Telfs (AUT)   Hungary v Italy   4-3 SO
7 Nov.   Telfs (AUT)   Slovenia v Italy   4-5 OT
7 Nov.   Telfs (AUT)   Austria v Hungary   3-2
8 Nov.   Telfs (AUT)   Slovenia v Hungary   6-2
8 Nov.   Telfs (AUT)   Italy v Austria   2-3
Standings: 1. Austria 9, 2. Slovenia 4, 3. Italy 3, 4. Hungary 2.
Exhibition games in Latvia
6 Nov.   Tukums (LAT)   Latvia v Norway   5-6 SO
7 Nov.   Tukums (LAT)   Latvia v Norway   1-3
8 Nov.   Tukums (LAT)   Latvia v Norway   6-5 OT
Exhibition games in Poland
6 Nov.   Torun (POL)   Poland v France   4-1
7 Nov.   Torun (POL)   Poland v France   5-7
8 Nov.   Torun (POL)   Poland v France   2-5


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