BIG SECOND PERIOD LEADS U.S. PAST SWISS, INTO WJAC SEMIFINALS
JASON LA ROSE
COBOURG, Ont. – Collin Peters scored twice, and Josh Wilkins had a goal and two assists, all in a five-goal second period, to help the United States beat Switzerland 7-1 in quarter-final action Wednesday at the 2015 World Junior A Challenge.
The Americans are into the semifinals for the ninth time in as many appearances at the tournament, and will travel to Whitby, Ont., to take on Russia on Thursday night (7 p.m. ET).
Ross Colton added two goals of his own for the U.S., and Max Zimmer and Callahan Burke also scored. Grant Jozefek was the only other multiple-point-getter, recording two assists in the victory.
After getting shutout by Russia in their preliminary round finale Tuesday, the Swiss wasted no time getting on the board against the Americans; Lee Roberts was the recipient of a fortuitous bounce off the end boards, beating U.S. goaltender Ryan Bednard just 3:14 in.
The Americans pulled even midway through the opening frame when Colton snuck in behind the Swiss defence, took a pass from Carson Meyer and snapped a quick shot past Matteo Ritz.
It was all U.S. from the drop of the puck in the second period; the Americans held a massive 22-1 advantage in shots on goal in the middle frame, and put five pucks past Ritz to take control.
Peters got the goal barrage started 2:36 in, burying a shot behind Ritz from the slot for the first U.S. lead.
Zimmer made it a two-goal advantage at 5:02, converting a feed from behind the net from Chase Pearson, and Wilkins went to the backhand on a shorthanded breakaway 56 seconds after that to make it 3-1.
Peters scored his second of the period at 11:27 when his shot found its way through traffic and past Ritz right off the face-off, and Colton tapped in a power-play goal at 14:40 to finish a busy stanza for the Americans.
The one shot by the Swiss set a tournament record for fewest by one team in a single period.
Burke scored the lone goal in the third period to provide the final margin of victory.
The U.S. finished with a 41-18 advantage in shots on goal.
With the loss, the Swiss drop to the fifth-place game for the second year in a row; they will face the Czech Republic on Friday night at the Cobourg Community Centre (7 p.m. ET).