Pinto tallies three points, but U.S. falters in opening game of 2020 World Juniors, downed 6-4 by Canada

Shane Pinto of North Dakota, North Dakota vs. Denver at Magness Arena, Nov. 15, 2019. (Candace Horgan)
North Dakota freshman Shane Pinto posted a three-point game as Team USA fell to Canada on Thursday afternoon in both teams’ World Junior opener (photo: Candace Horgan).

Canada defeated the United States 6-4 Thursday in the opening game of the 2020 IIHF World Junior Championship in Ostrava, Czech Republic.

Shane Pinto (North Dakota) led the U.S. with two goals and an assist and was named Team USA’s player of the game.

“We knew it was going to be a 60-minute game against them because it always is when two good teams go at it,” said U.S. coach Scott Sandelin (Minnesota Duluth). “In this tournament, you need everybody, sometimes you need some surprises. Right now, we need to keep building on the things we did well, and have to get ready to play tomorrow.”

Arthur Kaliyev (OHL’s Hamilton Bulldogs) and Nick Robertson (OHL’s Peterborough Petes) also tallied for the Americans.

With 16 seconds left in the second period, the U.S. went on its third power play. As time expired, Pinto grabbed a loose puck and snuck it past the goal line. However, upon the official review, time had expired and the goal was disallowed.

In goal, Spencer Knight (Boston College) finished with 26 saves in the U.S. crease.

U.S. and Canada tied in shots 32-32, while the U.S. went 3 for 5 on the power play and 2 for 5 on the penalty kill.

Team USA will continue pool play Friday against Germany, with puck drop scheduled for 7 p.m. local time/1 p.m. ET.