The U.S. National Junior Team dropped a 5-3 decision to Russia in its opening game of the 2021 IIHF World Junior Championship in Edmonton Friday night.
Team USA captain Cam York (Michigan), John Farinacci (Harvard/USHL’s Muskegon Lumberjacks) and Trevor Zegras (Boston University alum) all scored a goal for Team USA, bringing the game to 4-3 in the final minutes, before Russia scored an empty-net goal.
“I like the way we battled until the end tonight and had a chance to win the game, but we put ourselves in a tough position with our puck management,” said U.S. coach Nate Leaman (Providence) in a statement. “We have to re-focus, grow, and get better for tomorrow night.”
Russia scored three times over a span of 9:03 in the second period to take a 4-1 lead, with Dustin Wolf (WHL’s Everett Silvertips) replacing Spencer Knight (Boston College) in net for the U.S. after the fourth Russian goal at 12:15.
Knight had eight saves on 12 shots in the first 32:15 of play, while Wolf stopped all 11 shots he faced in the final 27:45 of the contest.
The U.S. will continue preliminary round play today against Austria. Puck drop is scheduled for 9:30 p.m. EST and the game can be seen live on NHL Network.