Team USA downs Finland Tuesday night in lone World Junior pre-tournament game

Boston College goalie Spencer Knight played the first half of Tuesday night’s World Junior pre-tournament game against Finland (file photo: Matt Zambonin/HHOF-IIHF Images).

Cole Caufield (Wisconsin) scored twice and Trevor Zegras (Boston University alum) added two assists to lead the U.S. National Junior Team to a 3-2 victory over Finland Tuesday night in Edmonton in its first and only pre-tournament game ahead of the 2021 IIHF World Junior Championship.

Arthur Kaliyev (OHL’s Hamilton Bulldogs) also scored for Team USA while Dustin Wolf (WHL’s Everett Silvertips), who played the second half of the game in net for the U.S., stopped all six shots he faced in the final frame to preserve the U.S. lead. Spencer Knight (Boston College) started the game and made seven saves on nine shots, including back-to-back scoring chances prior to yielding the net to Wolf.

The U.S. outshot Finland 45-16.

“I thought tonight was good overall,” said U.S. coach Nate Leaman (Providence) in a statement. “I thought some guys were a little tight in the first 10 minutes but that’s what these pre-tournaments games are for. I’m glad we played Finland, they’re a really good team, and we found some things that we’re good at and they showed us some of our weaknesses.

“It’s important we had this game tonight to help us prepare for the next step in the tournament.”

Caufield was named the U.S. player of the game.

The U.S. will open tournament play against Russia on Friday with puck drop scheduled for 9:30 p.m. EST. The game will be broadcast live on NHL Network.