PyeongChang 2018: USA storm into semis with big win12.03.2018
Defending Paralympic champions to meet hosts South Korea next to decide Group B winner
The USA sealed a comfortable 10-0 victory over Czech Republic at the Gangneung Hockey Centre to remain atop of Group B standings with six points and secure qualification for the Winter Paralympic semi-finals for a fifth consecutive time.
Forward Brody Roybal kicked off the scoring for the USA 1:04 into the game with a fantastic solo goal. Czech goaltender Martin Kudela had a good performance and made some spectacular saves during the first period, but could not prevent the Sochi 2014 gold medallists from tripling the lead with two goals from Princeton University economics student Declan Farmer.
The 20-year-old scored his third goal early in the second period. Kudela continued showing outstanding form, stopping the puck in multiple occasions, but Jack Wallace recorded his second goal in the tournament for a 5-0 lead.
Soon after, Roybal and former Nordic skier Travis Dodson found the net twice each, while Farmer swept the puck into the goal for a fourth time, his third on the power play. The score remained unchanged throughout the final period and the USA celebrated their second successive 10-0 win which follows the one against Japan on Monday (11 March).
“We have been working on the power play a lot over the last month. There is a really good chemistry among us, try to move the puck around, find open eyes and we were able to do that today,” said Farmer.
The USA will face South Korea (five points) next to decide the Group B winner and potentially avoid world champions Canada in the semi-finals. Farmer said: “We have to focus on our game and not too much on who we are playing against.
“I heard it is a sold-out crowd. Even though they will be cheering against us most of the time, we want to feed off from that energy. There are not many chances to play in front of so many people and it will be an exciting atmosphere.”
Czech Republic will play against Japan aiming to secure their first win at PyeongChang 2018.
Every competition as well as the Closing Ceremony can be watched live right here on the International Paralympic Committee’s website. Highlights of each day’s action will also be made available.