TORONTO, Ontario – Alexi Salamone (Buffalo, N.Y.) scored with 1:37 remaining in regulation to break a 1-1 tie and help the U.S. National Sled Hockey Team defeat Russia, 2-1, in the opening game of the 2013 World Sledge Hockey Challenge here today.
Tyler Carron (Fort Collins, Colo.) also recorded a goal for the United States, and goaltender Steve Cash (Overland, Mo.) turned away 10 shots in the victory.
“We got the first win and have some confidence going forward in this tournament,” said head coach Jeff Sauer. “We were really good off the bat, and we could have made it 3-0 or 4-0 in the first 10 minutes of the game, but overall we didn't play very consistent hockey. We played well at times, and that's what we really need to improve on.”
With Russia leading, 1-0, late in the second period, Carron scored to put the U.S. on the board. After getting a pass from Declan Farmer (Tampa, Fla.), Carron cut into the left circle and fired a shot past Russian goaltender Konstantin Lobanov.
Then, after Lobanov snuffed out several Team USA chances during the third frame, Salamone made his way to the edge of the crease and slid a shot under the Russian netminder to give the United States the lead for good.
Taylor Lipsett (Plano, Texas), Adam Page (Lancaster, N.Y.) and Josh Pauls (Green Brook, N.J.) each had an assist in the contest.
The U.S. National Sled Hockey Team will be back in action tomorrow (Dec. 2) when its squares off with Korea its second game of the World Sledge Hockey Challenge. Puck drop is scheduled for 5 p.m. ET.
Notes: Carron was named the U.S. Player of the Game ... Follow all U.S. games during the World Sledge Hockey Challenge via Twitter by following @USAHockey and @USAHockeyScores, and join the conversation by using hashtag #WSHC2013 ... Eighteen players were named to the 2014 U.S. National Sled Hockey Team on July 24. Team USA's roster will be trimmed to 17 players by Jan. 1, 2014, to conform to the Paralympic Games roster limit … Nine players return from the 2010 U.S. squad that captured the gold medal at the 2010 Paralympic Games in Vancouver, B.C., including goaltender Steve Cash (Overland, Mo.); defensemen Taylor Chace (Hampton Falls, N.H.), Nikko Landeros (Johnstown, Colo.), Josh Pauls (Green Brook, N.J.) and Andy Yohe (Bettendorf, Iowa); and forwards Taylor Lipsett (Plano, Texas), Adam Page (Lancaster, N.Y.), Alexi Salamone (Buffalo, N.Y.) and Greg Shaw (Merritt Island, Fla.). Cash, Chace, Lipsett, Salamone and Yohe also received bronze medals at the 2006 Paralympic Games in Torino, Italy … Dan Brennan (Colorado Springs, Colo.), director of sled and inline national teams for USA Hockey, is serving as the general manager of the 2014 U.S. National Sled Hockey Team ... Jeff Sauer (Madison, Wis.) is the head coach of the U.S. National Sled Hockey Team. Guy Gosselin (Grafton, Wis.), American Development Model regional manager for USA Hockey, is in his third season as an assistant coach for the U.S. National Sled Hockey Team ... Due to rights restrictions, the championship game of the World Sledge Hockey Challenge is only available in Canada on TSN.
|Dec. 1||Russia||W, 2-1|
|Dec. 2||Korea||W, 5-0|
|Dec. 4||Canada||L, 1-4|
|Dec. 5||Russia (Semifinal)||W, 4-1|
|Dec. 7||Canada (Championship Game)||L, 1-3|