Stampede Can’t Slow Down Team USA
ANN ARBOR, MI — The Sioux Falls Stampede were missing their top three players Wednesday night and the U.S. Under-18 Development Program (NTDP) took advantage, rolling past the Stampede 7-1 at the Ice Cube.
Dennis Kravchenko, C.J. Franklin and Zeb Knutson are with the U.S. Junior Select Team in Canada, meaning the Herd were without their services for the night. The NTDP scored three times in the first and three times in the second en route to their victory. The program plays international and collegiate teams and it showed as they were on fire all night.
Keith Burchett provided the only Stampede goal for the Herd who are now 7-4-1 on the season. Art Brey played the first two periods, stopping 13 of 19 shots while David Jacobson came in to play the third, stopping 8 of 9 shots.
The NTDP got on the board first, scoring 9:34 into the game when Anders Bjork blasted a rebound shot into the upper left hand corner of the net past Brey. Dylan Larkin wristed a shot on net that was stopped by Brey, but the rebound bounced to Bjork who quickly slapped it into the upper left hand corner of the net. It took the Herd just 12 seconds to respond however, as Burchett would quickly tie the game. Tony Calderone brought the puck into the NTDP zone and blasted a shot onto goaltender Edwin Minney that was stopped by his left pad, but bounced to Burchett who came streaking down the left wing boards and knocked home the rebound.
The NTDP would regain their lead at 15:44 when Shane Gersich broke through the Stampede defense and wristed a shot past Brey to make it 2-1. The Under-18 squad would add to their lead 38 seconds remaining in the period when Dylan Pavelek raced down the right wing boards and wristed a shot past the stick side of Brey to make it a 3-1 game at the end of one period. The Herd outshot the NTDP 14-10 in the period.
The game remained that way until 9:39 of the second when Larkin found the back of the net. Moments later, Peter Hand was assessed a five minute major for head contact and the U.S. Under-18 took advantage moments later on the power play. Jack Glover connected off a pass from Bjork less than 30 seconds into the advantage to give the U.S. Under-18 squad a 5-1 edge. Larking would score again at 16:10 when he raced down the right wing boards and made a beautiful backhanded shot past Brey into the upper left hand corner of the net to give the NTDP a 6-1 lead heading into the third period. NTDP outshot the Herd 9-8 in the period.
The Stampede improved their play in the third, creating several good scoring chances, but they all went just wide or were stopped by U.S. goalie Edwin Minny who was solid all night. The NTDP would strike one more time, this time at 12:43 on a blast from the high slot that went just underneath the crossbar and past Jacobson who played all of the third period in goal for the Herd.
Sioux Falls finished the night 0-for-6 on the power play while the U.S. Under-18 was 1-for-3. Each team finished the night with 28 shots on goal.
The Stampede will have a travel day Thursday as they head down to Youngstown, Ohio to prepare to play the Phantoms this Friday and Saturday night.
Courtesy: Sioux Falls Stampede