The U.S. Under-18 Select Team defeated the Czech Republic, 3-2, in Breclav, Czech Republic, today in the opening game of the 2010 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament. Cason Hohmann (Plymouth, Mich.) paced Team USA with a pair of points (1-1), while U.S. goalie Jay Williams (McLean, Va.) made 18 saves in the win.
"We had a great tempo, with good speed and energy throughout the game," said Tim Army, head coach of the U.S. Under-18 Select Team. "We were more disciplined and our penalty killing was excellent."
Alex Broadhurst (New Lenox, Ill.) gave Team USA a 1-0 lead 7:30 into the first period. With the two teams playing four-on-four, Broadhurst and John Gaudreau (Carney's Point, N.J.) flew up the ice, creating a two-on-one rush. Gaudreau made a backhand pass across the slot, after deking Czech goaltender Jaroslav Pavelka, and Broadhurst slipped the puck into the open net.
After the Czech Republic tied the game, 1-1, the U.S. regained the advantage just over two minutes into the second period. Hohmann passed the puck from the corner to Tanner Sorenson (Anchorage, Alaska) behind the net. Sorenson then fed a pass to Vincent Trocheck (Birmingham, Mich.), who let go a wrist shot high to the glove side for the score.
Team USA increased its lead to 3-1 midway through the third period at the 10:06 mark. After Craig Duininck's (Plymouth, Mich.) shot from the boards was blocked, Hohmann knocked the rebound out of the air and into the net for the eventual game-winning goal.
The Czech Republic scored a power-play goal just 1:26 later, but the U.S. held on for the win.
The U.S. Under-18 Select Team will return to action tomorrow (Aug. 10) against Russia, at 9:30 a.m. EDT in Breclav, Czech Republic.
NOTES: Kevin Irwin (Hinckley, Ohio) was named the U.S. player of the game ... Team USA outshot the Czech Republic 37-20 ... The 2010 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament features eight countries in two groups. Group A (Czech Republic, Finland, Russia, United States) will play its preliminary-round games in Breclav, Czech Republic, while Group B (Canada, Slovakia, Sweden, Switzerland) will play its preliminary-round games in Piestany, Slovakia ... Team USA has finished in the top three of the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament nine times since the tournament's inception in 1991, including a first place finish in 2003. The U.S. finished second in the tournament six times (1993, 1994, 1996, 1999, 2000, 2006) and finished third twice (1991, 1995) ... The 22 players on the 2010 U.S. Under-18 Select Team represent 13 states, with three players coming from Ohio ... Six of the players were members of the 2009 U.S. Under-17 Select Team that competed at the 2009 Under-17 Five Nations Tournament in Fussen, Germany, including goaltender Jay Williams; forwards Cason Hohmann, Alex Racino (Merrill, Wis.) and Lukas Sutter (Whitefish, Mont.); and defensemen Brian Cooper (Anchorage, Alaska) and Connor Murphy (Dublin, Ohio) ... Five members of the U.S. Under-18 Select Team competed in the United States Hockey League in 2009-10, including forwards Seth Ambroz (New Prague, Minn./Omaha Lancers), Theo Di Pauli (Woodridge, Ill./Chicago Steel) and Hohmann (Cedar Rapids Roughriders), as well as defensemen Cooper (Fargo Force) and Murphy (U.S. National Under-17 Team). The USHL is the only Tier I junior hockey league in the United States ... For Team USA's full roster, visit USAHockey.com ... The 2010 U.S. Under-18 Select Team is coached by Tim Army, head men's ice hockey coach at Providence College. Army has twice served as an assistant coach for the U.S. Men's National Team (1994, 1996), and was an assistant coach for Team USA at the 2004 World Cup of Hockey ... Jay Varady, associate head coach with the Western Hockey League's Everett Silvertips, and Chadd Cassidy, assistant coach at USA Hockey's National Team Development Program, are the assistant coaches ... Army, Varady and Cassidy are all Level 4 USA Hockey certified coaches ... The U.S. Under-18 Select Team was selected following the annual USA Hockey Boys' Select 17 Player Development Camp that took place July 7-13, at The Sports Centre at MCC in Rochester, N.Y. The camp provides top young players with concentrated on- and off-ice training and instruction, as well as the opportunity to compete at a national level against other players from their age group.