AMERICANS BATTLE BACK TO BEAT WHITE IN OVERTIME
JASON LA ROSE
DAWSON CREEK, B.C. – Trevor Zegras finished a 2-on-1 with Jack Hughes at 2:45 of overtime, capping a two-goal third-period comeback and giving the United States a 4-3 extra-time win over Canada White on Monday at the 2017 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge.
Hughes picked up a loose puck at the U.S. blue-line, carried into the White zone and played give-and-go with Zegras, who chipped the game-winner up and over Canadian goaltender Jonathan Lemieux (Beloeil, Que./Val-d’Or, QMJHL).
The Americans trailed 3-1 entering the third period before working their way back to force the extra period.
White needed less than five minutes of the first period to take the lead; Nathan Légaré (Saint-Eustache, Que./Baie-Comeau, QMJHL) found a rebound at the side of the net and beat U.S. netminder Cameron Rowe for the lone goal of the opening frame.
Légaré helped set up the 2-0 goal midway thorugh the second period, forcing a turnover in the neutral zone that led to a Canadian 3-on-0 and a Logan Barlage (Humboldt, Sask./Swift Current, WHL) marker to double the lead.
Hughes set up Cole Caufield to get the Americans on the board at 17:47 of the second, but Jakob Pelletier (Quebec City, Que./Moncton, QMJHL) followed the play and snapped a quick shot past Rowe just 38 seconds after that to restore the two-goal advantage after 40 minutes.
The Americans came out firing in the third period, peppering Lemieux with 14 shots while holding White without an attempt on goal for the first 15 minutes of the final stanza.
Cam York started the comeback at 2:39 of the third, tucking a short-side wraparound past Lemieux, and Hughes drove to the net to beat the White puck-stopper with a backhand to tie the game seven minutes later, setting up the OT heroics from Zegras.
The U.S. finished with a 40-22 advantage in shots on goal.
Group A play finishes Tuesday at the Encana Events Centre; Canada White takes on the Czech Republic in the matinee (2:30 p.m. MT) before the U.S. faces off with Canada Black (7 p.m. MT).