U.S. National Sled Hockey Team defeats Canada 2-1 to advance to gold medal game
HAMAR, Norway - Taylor Chace (Hampton Falls, N.H.) scored a goal and recorded an assist and Steve Cash (Overland, Mo.) made 15 saves to help the U.S. National Sled Hockey Team defeat Canada, 2-1, in the semifinals of the International Paralympic Committee Sledge Hockey World Championship tonight at the Olympic Amphitheatre.
With the victory, Team USA advances to the gold-medal game on Sunday (April 1) where it will face Korea at 10 a.m. EDT.
"Our guys really stuck to the game plan tonight," said Jeff Sauer, head coach of the U.S. National Sled Hockey Team. "We played really strong defensively, especially in the last five minutes of the game. It was our goal to play for a gold medal and now that's what we're doing."
Chace opened the scoring with a wrist shot from the top of the slot that found the back of the net at 9:48 of the first period. Taylor Lipsett (Richardson, Texas) banged home a rebound with 10 seconds remaining in the period to open a two-goal lead for Team USA. Chace and Alexi Salamone (Grand Island, N.Y.) collected assists on the goal.
Cash made several outstanding saves near the end of the second period to keep the score 2-0 in favor of the U.S. heading into the second intermission.
Canada made it a one-goal game at 8:51 of the third period, but the U.S. was able to hold its lead to earn a spot in the gold-medal game on Sunday.
NOTES: Steve Cash was named Team USA's Player of the Game ... For a complete 2011-12 U.S. National Sled Hockey Team roster, including bios, click here ... All games from the 2012 IPC Sledge Hockey World Championships are streamed live here, while live scoring can be found here ... Taylor Chace is serving as a captain for the U.S. National Sled Hockey Team, while Taylor Lipsett is the alternate captain ... Team USA is the defending champion of the event ... The U.S. National Sled Hockey Team has participated in two previous competitions this season. Team USA captured second place in the World Sled Hockey Challenge in Calgary, Alta., (Nov. 27-Dec. 3) and posted a 1-0-0-2 (W-OTW-OTL-L) record against Canada in an exhibition series in Williamsville, N.Y., (Feb. 23-25).