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Game Day: USA vs. Russia (Semifinals)

04/26/2013, 12:00am MDT
By USA Hockey

Team USA takes on Russia in a rematch from the first preliminary round tilt.

The U.S. shutout Sweden in the quarterfinals to earn a semifinal bid. Photo courtesy of HHOF-IIHF Images.


The U.S. Men’s National Under-18 Team squares off against Russia in the semifinal round at the 2013 International Ice Hockey Federation Men's World Under-18 Championship. Puck drop is scheduled for 8 p.m. local time (12 p.m. EDT). Team USA earned the right to skate in the semis behind a convincing 4-0 shutout over Sweden on Thursday (April 24). Russia dismantled Germany, 8-4, on the other side of the tournament bracket, Thursday night. The game will be played at the Bolshoy Ice Dome, a multi-purpose arena in Sochi, Russia that will host ice hockey at the 2014 Winter Olympics.


  • Team USA and Russia have clashed 13 times at the World Under-18 Championship, including this year's bout in the preliminary round. The Russians are the only squad to post a winning record over the Americans in this tournament. The U.S. is 4-9-0 (W-L-OTL) against Russia in the all-time series.
  • Team USA trails Russia, 46-40, in goals scored, in the all-time series.
  • The last time these two met was in this tournament: a 4-3 loss for the Americans as Russia scored in the closing minutes of the contest. Jack Eichel (North Chelmsford, Mass.), Will Butcher (Sun Prairie, Wis.) and J.T. Compher (Northbrook, Ill.) were the goal scorers for Team USA. The U.S. outshot its rival, 37-28, in the game.
  • Prior to this year's game, Team USA skated away with a 4-3 victory at the 2011 IIHF Men's World Under-18 Championship in Crimmitschau, Germany. The U.S. was paced by J.T. Miller (East Palestine, Ohio), who scored two goals in the game and Reid Boucher (Grand Ledge, Mich.), who notched the game-winning tally with 21 seconds remaining in the game. Russia's Nail Yakupov led his squad with three points (1-2).

News and Notes

  • Tyler Motte (St. Clair, Mich.) is tied for fifth in tournament points (5-2). The forward's five tallies place him second behind Canada's Connor McDavid. Motte has skated in five games for Team USA.
  • J.T. Compher is also tied for fifth in tournament points (3-4). Compher has skated in five games for Team USA.
  • Steven Santini (Mahopac, N.Y.) is tied for the second in plus-minus rating. The defensemen is +8 in five games. Santini has been on the ice for nine U.S. goals, with just one against in four games.
  • Hudson Fasching (Burnsville, Minn.) it tied for second in assists over the tournament. The forward has five helpers in five games.
  • Will Butcher is tied for fourth in points by a defenseman. The blueliner has potted two goals and added two assists in five games.
  • Thatcher Demko (San Diego, Calif.) moved to fifth in goals-against average (2.01) after a shutout performance against Sweden. The netminder has seen action in each of Team USA's games.
  • Team USA ranks fifth on the power play (22.7%), while Russia is tops in the tournament at 40.0%.
  • Team USA ranks third on the penalty kill (94.1%), while Russia sits near the bottom in seventh (77.3%).
  • The Americans are the least penalized team in the tournament through five games, having been whistled for 44 total penalty minutes (8.80 per game). Russia is the second most penalized team, accumulating 121 PIMs or 24.20 per game.
  • The U.S. is second in total spectators over the course of the tournament thus far, behind only host Russia. Team USA has played in front of 11,310 fans or 2,262 on average.

Previous Games

USA 4 - Sweden 0 (Quarterfinals)
Thatcher Demko made 28 saves and special teams proved key, as the U.S. National Under-18 Team blanked Sweden, 4-0, in the quarterfinals. Will Butcher opened scoring with a power-play blast to give the U.S. an early lead. Tyler Motte added to the Team USA advantage, depositing a Hudson Fasching feed into the net. After a scoreless second stanza, Michael McCarron (Macomb, Mich.) and J.T. Compher helped ice the game, putting the U.S. up by four goals. Team USA outshot Sweden, 42-28.

Russia 8 - Germany 4 (Quarterfinals)
Valeri Nichushkin scored three goals, as the Russians defeated Germany in a wild game at the Bolshoy Ice Dome. Russia carried a 2-1 lead into the first intermission, before erupting for four, unanswered goals in the second period. Germany stormed back in the third period, tallying back-to-back goals to close the gap, 6-3, with the Russians. The hosts potted its seventh goal just before several scrums broke out. Several players received game misconduct penalties. After the dust settled, Germany made it 7-4, but Russia added an insurance goal to seal the Germans fate. Igor Shestyorkin and Nikita Serebryakov combined to stop 33 shots for Russia.

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