Team Sweden gave themselves a 4-0 lead two-and-a-half minutes into the third period, just needing to play out the final frame to run their preliminary-round winning streak at the World Junior Hockey Championship to 47 games.
The United States broke the shutout with a goal from Mikey Anderson about halfway through the frame. Ryan Poehling had an assist on the play. It set up what would become one the greatest single-game performances from a player at the WJC.
At 53:25, standing at the side of the net, Poehling got his stick on a hard pass to direct the puck in to make it a 4-2 game.
Despite the goals, Sweden was still hanging on with time winding down. The United States pulled their goalie, and with 37 seconds left on the clock, Poehling made it a game with his second of the night.
Needing a rest after the goal, he wasn’t on the ice for the next shift, yet a quick whistle got the Montreal Canadiens prospect back on the ice.
At 59:36, he found the net for a third time, capping off a massive comeback with a natural hat trick in a clutch performance.
NATURAL HAT TRICK RYAN POEHLING— Scott Matla (@scottmatla) December 30, 2018
TIE GAME pic.twitter.com/cC2MR5F6d8
The teams went to overtime, and there Sweden was able to keep its winning streak going when defenceman Adam Boqvist scored the game-winner.
Both teams are still very much alive in the hunt for a gold medal. Each has one game remaining in the preliminary round before the playoffs begin. Sweden will be aiming for their 48th straight win, while the USA will have the experience from such a comeback in their pocket for later in the tournament.