Keller’s two-point game lifts United States over Russia at World Juniors

2017 World Junior Championship

Dec. 26, 2016-Jan. 5, 2017, Toronto and Montreal

United States schedule (all times Eastern and all games on NHL Network):

Monday, Dec. 26: U.S. 6, Latvia 1

Wednesday, Dec. 28: U.S. 5, Slovakia 2

Thursday, Dec. 29: U.S. 3, Russia 2

Saturday, Dec. 31: U.S. 3, Canada 1

Monday, Jan. 2: Quarterfinals -- U.S. 3, Switzerland 2

Wednesday, Jan. 4: Semifinals -- U.S. 4, Russia 3, shootout

Thursday, Jan. 5: Gold-medal game: U.S. 5, Canada 4, shootout

Clayton Keller (Boston University) tallied a goal and an assist Thursday night as the U.S. National Junior Team edged Russia 3-2 at Toronto’s Air Canada Centre in its third preliminary-round game of the 2017 World Junior Championship.

Tyler Parsons (OHL’s London Knights) made 25 saves in goal for the win, which guaranteed the Americans a berth in the tournament quarterfinals.

“That was an exciting game to be a part of and I’m real proud of these guys for the effort they gave,” Team USA coach Bob Motzko (St. Cloud State) said in a statement. “It was a quick turnaround from yesterday, but the guys in this locker room continue to rise to every challenge that comes their way.

“We’ve got a chance to win our group on Saturday and position ourselves nicely for the quarterfinal and I know we’ll be ready.”

Troy Terry (Denver) and Colin White (Boston College) also scored for the United States.

Team USA (3-0-0-0) can clinch first place in Group B with a victory in its final preliminary-round game against Canada on Saturday. Puck drop is slated for 3:30 p.m. EDT and the game will be televised live on the NHL Network.