John Gaudreau had a hat trick, Riley Barber added two of his own, while John Gibson allows none as Team USA advances to the semi finals of the 2013 World Junior Championships.
The refs controlled the action calling penalty after penalty. Early on the Americans killed off all their penalties while dominating on the power play. Gaudreau was the fortunate recipient of a few rebounds early on netting his first two goals. Ryan Hartman followed with a very nice goal of his own. Riley Barber added the next two which put this game in the old deep freeze.
Tough fought first period between both squads led to a tight 1-0 game after a period of play. Then the second period happened. It was all Team USA. Czechs pulled their goalie bringing in a kid with bright green pads and helmets from his regular club. Obviously not expecting to see action. It was the least embarrassing part of the game for the Czechs who were suppose to be very strong at forward. After several goals the team in red got as hot as their sweater color.
Gaudreau completed his hat trick late in the 2nd to cap a wonderful performance from his line who was unstoppable. John Gibson stopped all 31 shots faced to stay hot. He has allowed 2 goals to both Canada and Russia in 2-1 losses in Group play. He will need to be equally sharp to advance to the Gold medal game. The skaters for the US will need to get more than 1 goal as they did against everyone else.
Team USA and Team Canada will meet again for a chance to play for the Gold. No rest for the Americans who will face a rested Team Canada team in less than 24 hours after beating the Czechs. The semi final will take place at 2am Arizona time. Canadians had a BYE based on their domination of Group play and will have fresh legs Thursday morning very early US time.