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Team USA and UConn’s Tage Thompson Take Gold in World Juniors Final

Team USA came back from two goals down twice in a wild overtime thriller.

Andre Ringuette/HHOF-IIHF Images

Team USA went undefeated in the IIHF World Junior Championship, beating Canada in a wild final at Bell Centre in Montreal. The game finished tied and eventually USA won after shootout, 5-4.

Troy Terry scored the lone goal in the five-round shootout.

Kieffer Bellows, Charlie McAvoy and Colin White scored in regulation for Team USA, with Bellows netting a pair. Adam Fox had two assists and UConn Huskies sophomore forward Tage Thompson added one as well.

Tyler Parsons stopped 46 shots for Team USA, 17 in overtime.

The first period was a punch in the gut for the Americans. Each team started off a bit apprehensive, but Canada quickly took the reins.

Thomas Chabot slid the puck in on the open side at 4:58 and it was 1-0 in favor of the Canadians.

At 9:02 Jeremy Lauzon took a puck in the high slot after Adam Fox batted it away from Parsons and the American net. He beat Parsons and suddenly it was 2-0 and the crowd was rocking.

The Canadians kept pressing and led in shots after 20 minutes, 10-6, but it felt like the Canadians had a stranglehold on the game.

However, the Americans started to dig themselves out of the hole in the second period.

Team Canada was mid-change as defenseman McAvoy was trailing on an odd-man rush. Jordan Greenway made an impressive cross-ice pass and McAvoy sent it in to cut the lead in half.

Canada took a too-many-men penalty at 8:21 on an iffy call, but Team USA took advantage. On the power play, Thompson fed the puck to Fox at the point and his shot was deflected into the net by Bellows to tie the game.

The Americans held Canada to an 0-for-3 start on the power play, but after Bellows got called for tripping just 55 seconds into the third, they couldn’t stop Canada a fourth time.

Nicholas Roy beat Parsons just under the bar from just inside the left face-off circle at 1:52 to retake the lead for Canada.

The Canadians took another two-goal lead at 4:05. Mathieu Roy scored on Parsons on the rush with a nice move from right to left across the net. He went from forehand to backhand to forehand and Canada again had a two-goal lead.

With their backs against the wall, the Americans struck back just 39 seconds later to cut the lead to one.

McAvoy slid the puck through traffic from left to right and found Bellows, who put the puck in the back of the net. Team USA would complete the comeback at 7:07, courtesy of White.

Fox took a pass from Clayton Keller and took another shot from the blue line. White who deflected it in for the tie.

The final 13 minutes of regulation were frantic, with each team faltering on chance after chance. This back-and-forth tilt would head to overtime.

Overtime was just as frenetic. The five-on-five, 20-minute session saw 17 shots for Canada to seven for the Americans, but the whole period each team went back-and-forth with chances.

Each goaltender, Parsons for the Americans and Carter Hart for Canada, extended the game for their respective teams in the scoreless overtime. A shootout would decide who would be getting the gold medal.

Each team’s first three attempts were stopped, then Terry stepped up to lead off the fourth round. As he did three times in the semifinal against Russia, he went five-hole on the goaltender, and as he did three times in the semifinal against Russia, he scored.

Parsons made two more saves to complete the win and the celebration was on. Thompson and his teammates celebrated on the ice and at one point the old UConn Hockey favorite, “Sky Full of Stars” played over the speakers.