When people look back at the 2017 World Junior Hockey Championship Gold Medal game between the United States and Canada, it will show that the United States never led until the game was over, and well, that’s the only lead you need.
Troy Terry was the shootout hero as he scored to give the Americans a 5-4 overtime win when he went five-hole on Carter Hart. It was Terry’s fourth shootout goal in two days as he scored three the previous day against Russia.
The United States rebounded from deficits of 2-0, and 4-2 in the win. Tyler Parsons was outstanding for the Americans making all five saves in the shootout, and 46 saves in the game, 17 in overtime.
The third period and overtime were two periods worthy of the moment, and worthy of this game which was without doubt an instant classic we will talk about for a long time.
The teams traded chances in the early part of the 20 minute overtime period, in end-to-end action that was evident through the first 60 minutes.
There was no sitting back in overtime. I’m not even sure that term is in either team’s vocabulary.
A too-many-players penalty 6:44 into overtime gave Canada a power play. It was their fifth straight power play in the game.
While Canada had a close call called for too-many-players earlier in the game (that was still correctly called), there was little doubt in that one as the Americans had six players in the play with no player going to the bench.
Canada had their chances, including one where Tyler Parsons made a miraculous save on Julien Gauthier, but were unable to capitalize on the chance given to them.
In a span of about 10 seconds, Jeremy Bracco, Luke Kunin and Anthony Cirelli traded scoring chances on either side of the ice.
Kieffer Bellows went off for kneeing Mathieu Joseph less than a minute into the period.
On the power play, Nicolas Roy took the puck at the left circle and fired the shot past Parsons to give Canada a 3-2 lead.
Great shot by Roy. Canada back up 3-2. pic.twitter.com/Szn49zx0bu— Marc Dumont (@MarcPDumont) January 6, 2017
Just over two minutes later, Joseph, who went down hard after the knee-on-knee hit, broke in all alone and beat Parsons with one of the goals of the tournament.
Mathieu Joseph makes it 4-2 for Canada. pic.twitter.com/Abl1O6dHAa— Marc Dumont (@MarcPDumont) January 6, 2017
But that was only the opening act of the period. Team USA wasn’t done yet. Just 39 seconds after the Joseph goal, McAvoy broke into the zone and found Bellows cross ice who fired a perfect shot past Hart to close the gap to one.
Whitewalker Bellows cuts Canada’s lead in half pic.twitter.com/M7zgy6yf81— Pete Blackburn (@PeteBlackburn) January 6, 2017
Less then three minutes after that, the reset button was hit once again. Colin White caused a turnover, and the puck found its way to Adam Fox who had a shot-pass to White at the side of the net who put the puck home just over the pad of Hart.
Those four goals were scored on four straight shots in a crazy stretch of hockey but it wasn’t an indication of the goaltending as both Carter Hart and Tyler Parsons had outstanding games and saves that kept their team in the game. Hart made 31 saves for Canada, including seven in overtime.
Canada and the USA both had huge scoring chances throughout the frame with Dylan Strome and Blake Speers combining on a few as well as Tage Thompson getting a couple for the Americans, but with Casey Fitzgerald in the box for delay of game, Canada missed their best chance.
Mathew Barzal passed the puck to a wide open Pierre-Luc Dubois who had a wide open net but the puck hit the heel of his stick and he was unable to finish the chance.
A bouncing puck with just over two minutes left in the third period gave the Canadians a scare. Charlie McAvoy had the shot, and Dillon Dube was fighting in front to clear it, and Dube put the puck in the corner and the next chance from the slot went high and wide.Canada couldn’t have asked for a better start to get the rocking Bell Centre crowd into the Gold-medal game.
Less than five minutes in, Mathew Barzal entered the US zone in transition and found Thomas Chabot at the side of the net, and he made no mistake to give Canada a 1-0 lead.
Chabot opens the scoring for Canada. Barzal with the assist. pic.twitter.com/qchdJeu8PL— Marc Dumont (@MarcPDumont) January 6, 2017
The goal was the result of a frantic pace that the game started with. There were multiple end-to-end scoring chances with Carter Hart making a big save on a USA 3-on-1 rush, followed by a Canadian shot off the post behind Tylor Parsons in the game’s opening minutes.
Less than five minutes later, Jeremy Lauzon got the puck off of an American turnover at the top of the circle and fired a shot over the blocker of Tyler Parsons to double the Canadian lead.
Hell of a shot by Lauzon to give Canada 2-0 lead pic.twitter.com/4Zv5wdqGmt— Marc Dumont (@MarcPDumont) January 6, 2017
Pierre-Luc Dubois took the game’s first penalty when he hit American defenceman Charlie McAvoy into the boards and went off for boarding. McAvoy was slow to get up, but returned in time to start the power play. The man advantage ended when Colin White took a hooking penalty.
In the second period, USA came out a different team, with scoring chances within the opening minute of the period and it paid off 3:04 in, when, after a bad line change by Canada, Jordan Greenway found a wide open Charlie McAvoy who made no mistake, beating Carter Hart on the glove side.
McAvoy had a little bit of space. pic.twitter.com/e2bESPDgO3— Marc Dumont (@MarcPDumont) January 6, 2017
Then, more than five minutes later, Canada was called for a too many players penalty, and on the ensuing power play, an Adam Fox point shot was tipped by Kieffer Bellows past Hart to tie the game at 2-2.
Bellows with a nice redirect in front of Hart. Tie game, 2-2- pic.twitter.com/vgFvO9dpvN— Marc Dumont (@MarcPDumont) January 6, 2017
Parsons was huge in the second period, making all 11 saves in the frame. Canada had some chances, including Taylor Raddysh in the slot on the power play, but were unable to convert.
Russia won the bronze medal in overtime earlier in the day in a 2-1 win over Sweden.