Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Domi Scores Two as Canada Tops U.S. to Take First Place in World Junior Group

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Domi Scores Two as Canada Tops U.S. to Take First Place in World Junior Group

Article excerpt

Domi goals lift Canada over U.S. 5-3

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MONTREAL - The Americans made it a game at the end, but Canada has advanced from the group stage of the world junior champion with its perfect record intact.

Max Domi scored twice, including one of two empty-net goals, as Canada hung on for a 5-3 victory over the United States on Wednesday.

The win put Canada (4-0-0) into what should be an easy quarter-final against Denmark in Toronto on Friday, while the Americans (2-1-1) will stay in Montreal for a tough quarter-final against Russia.

"I thought we had good flow throughout the game," said Canadian captain Curtis Lazar. "You have to give the Americans credit. They didn't go away, or roll over and die.

"They made it quite interesting. I was freaking out a bit at the end, but we found a way to win."

Canada wore down the Americans with high-tempo hockey from its top three lines and a strong checking game from the fourth unit. They had a 43-28 shot advantage, including a long stretch of the second period when it was one-way hockey.

But the U.S. didn't go down without a fight, as Dylan Larkin scored twice in the third frame to draw his team within a goal, only to see Canada put it away with empty-netters by Domi and Sam Reinhart.

"If they don't score those two empty netters, we scored the same amount of goals as Canada," said U.S. goalie Thatcher Demko. "We were right there, toe to toe with them.

"It could have gone either way. Credit to Canada, but it was nice to see us battle and compete at the end."

Josh Morrissey scored as Canada's red hot power play went 1 for 2 to maintain a .500 success rate over four games. The penalty killers conceded a goal for the first time in 15 tries to U.S. rearguard Anthony DeAngelo, however.

Lazar also scored, while Reinhart had a goal and two assists to take the team lead with eight points.

The largest, noisiest crowd so far at the Bell Centre -- 18,295 in attendance -- saw a fast-paced and physical game in which the Finnish and Swedish referees mostly kept their whistles in their pockets.

The pre-game hype was all about Canada's Connor McDavid and the Americans' Jack Eichel, slated to go one-two in the NHL draft. While both played well, neither dominated but each had an assist.

"It was exciting," McDavid said. "The U.S. has a great team. It was a lot of fun."

Eichel and the top line with Alex Tuch and Tyler Motte found themselves all game against Canada's shutdown pairing of Shea Theodore and Darnell Nurse, who left them little room to play their cycling game.

"Me and Nursy knew we'd be matched up against him and I thought we did a really good job," said Theodore. "He's fast, he's got great hockey sense. He knows what areas to go to get opportunities."

"You can take a lot out of a loss," said Eichel. "That's what we'll do and we'll be better for it. …

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