Canada 6 - United States 3
MYTISCHI, Russia -- Canada is on a roll as it heads into the final round of the World Hockey Championship.
Jay McClement scored on Canada's first shot of the game, eight seconds after the opening faceoff, and Mathieu Lombardi had three goals in a 6-3 win over the United States on Monday.
The Canadians take a six-game winning streak into their quarter-final game on Thursday against Switzerland. The other quarter-final games are between Russia and the Czech Republic, Sweden and Slovakia along with the United States and Finland.
"You can't take the Swiss lightly," said goalie Cam Ward. "Think back to the (Torino 2006 Winter) Olympic and they beat Canada 2-0. We know they can come up with a big effort in big games and we have to play smart and be ready."
Mike Cammalleri scored twice in a winning effort.
Some of the fans were making their way to their seats when McClement ripped a slap shot past U.S. goalie John Grahame seconds after the game started. McClement's second goal in as many days was the fastest goal to start a game in Canadian history at the worlds, beating Mike Ricci's marker at 20 seconds of a game against Great Britain in 1994.
"That set the tone right there," said Ward. "It dictated the tempo and we were able to take control. That was one of the fastest goals at the start of a game I have ever been involved in."
McClement's goal was also a sign of things to come.
Cammalleri made it 2-0 less than two minutes after the McClement goal and the offensive assault continued at 12:48 when Lombardi converted a pass from Rick Nash for a 3-0 first period cushion.
Cammalleri's second goal of the period sent the Canadians to the dressing room for the first intermission with a 4-0 lead.
The United States got on the scoreboard midway through the second period when Paul Stastny pushed a rebound past Ward.
But Lombardi's second goal of the game took the wind out of the sails of an American rally.
Lee Stempniak cut Canada's lead to 5-2 to round out the second period scoring.
The United States made a change in net to start the third period, with Jason Bacashihus replacing John Graham.
Lombardi banged home a rebound at 11:58 for hit hat trick and Stastny's goal soon after made it 6-3.
"The last time I had a hat trick was a couple years ago on the road in Chicago," said Lombardi. "We've definitely been struggling, so coming out in that first period, we tried to set the tone.'
After allowing the first goal in five straight games, the Canadians scored first for the first time.
"We wanted to finish first (in their pool) and the goal is to get better and better," said Ward. "You can see things happening. Guys are comfortable with their lines and we're still moving in the right direction.
After winning a medal three straight years and then finishing out of the medal running last year, Canada is again in position to finish on the podium.
"We are making strides," said Ward. "The guys are upbeat and we are hoping to keep things going in the right direction."