Okposo Scores Twice As USA Defeats France 7-2

Friday, 05.04.2012 / 9:21 AM
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2012 IIHF World Championship
Okposo Scores Twice As USA Defeats France 7-2

USA 7, FRANCE 2


Kyle Okposo scored two goals, Max Pacioretty scored one and picked up two assists and Alex Goligoski had two points as Team USA defeated France 7-2 Friday in Helsinki.



Okposo's Goal
Watch the Isles forward beat France goaltender Cristobal Huet with a short-side snipe.
 
Postgame Reaction
Okposo and other Team USA players react to their 7-2 win over France after Game 1 of the 2012 IIHF Worlds
 


USA Hockey Official Game Recap:


Kyle Okposo
(St. Paul, Minn./New York Islanders/Univ. of Minnesota) scored twice and Max Pacioretty (New Canaan, Conn./Montreal Canadiens/Univ. of Michigan) tallied a goal and two assists as the U.S. Men's National Team defeated France, 7-2, here today at Hartwall Arena in the opening game of the 2012 International Ice Hockey Federation Men's World Championship.

"It's obviously good to open with a win," said Scott Gordon, head coach of the U.S. Men's National Team. "It was a much closer game than the final score indicated. I like what I've seen from our team so far, both in the two games we've played and in practice."

France opened the scoring at 12:17 of the first period, but Okposo scored on a breakaway 4:35 later to tie the game. Alex Goligoski (Grand Rapids, Minn./Dallas Stars/Univ. of Minnesota) hit Okposo in stride through the neutral zone to create the scoring chance.

The U.S. took its first lead of the game at 3:56 of the second period when captain Jack Johnson (Ann Arbor, Mich./Columbus Blue Jackets/Univ. of Michigan) ripped a one-timer from the center point while on the power play past France netminder Cristobal Huet. Ryan Lasch (Lake Forest, Calif./Lahti Pelicans/St. Cloud State Univ.) and Justin Faulk (South St. Paul, Minn./Carolina Hurricanes/Univ. of Minnesota Duluth) assisted on the play.

On the power play once again, the U.S. extended its lead to 3-1 on a goal by Bobby Ryan (Cherry Hill, N.J./Anaheim Ducks). Pacioretty fed the puck from the left corner into the crease, where Ryan one-touched it between the legs of the Huet at 9:15.

Following a French goal at 13:17 that made it 3-2, Team USA reestablished a two-goal advantage with just 22 seconds left in the middle stanza when Pacioretty redirected a Goligoski's wrist shot from the left point.

Team USA put the game away in the third period by scoring three times. Jim Slater (Lapeer, Mich./Winnipeg Jets/Michigan State Univ.) converted a two-on-one thanks to a feed from Kyle Palmieri (Smithtown, N.Y./Anaheim Ducks/Univ. of Notre Dame) at 5:38. Okposo scored into the upper corner of the net on a sharp-angle shot at 11:00 and Jeff Petry (Ann Arbor, Mich./Edmonton Oilers/Michigan State Univ.) ended the scoring at 17:41 during a delayed penalty against France.

Jimmy Howard (Syracuse, N.Y./Detroit Red Wings/Univ. of Maine) picked up the win in the U.S. net with 21 saves. Paul Stastny (St. Louis, Mo./Colorado Avalanche/Univ. of Denver) and Faulk each had three assists.

The U.S. Men's National Team continues Group H play tomorrow (May 5) against Canada. Faceoff is 7 p.m. local time (noon ET). The NBC Sports Network will air the game same-day delay at 7:30 p.m. ET.

NOTES: USA improved to 7-1-0 against France in the IIHF Men's World Championship ... Team USA went 2-for-6 on the power play, scored on a delayed penalty and killed all three France power plays ... Max Pacorietty, with a goal and two assists, was named Team USA's Player of the Game ... A total of 12 players, including five defensemen, contributed points in the contest ... Defenseman Jack Johnson was named team captain on May 3. The alternate captains are forwards Jim Slater and Nate Thompson ... For Team USA's updated roster, click here ... Twenty of the 23 members of Team USA played U.S. college hockey ... Six of the 23 players announced are products of USA Hockey's National Team Development Program, including Joey Crabb, Justin Faulk, Cam Fowler, Jimmy Howard, Jack Johnson and Kyle Palmieri ... Fourteen NHL teams are represented on the roster. The Anaheim Ducks have three representatives, while the Carolina Hurricanes, Columbus Blue Jackets, Dallas Stars, Detroit Red Wings and Tampa Bay Lightning have two players apiece ... Scott Gordon is the head coach of the 2012 U.S. Men's National Team. Greg Cronin and David Quinn are serving as assistant coaches ... The 2012 U.S. Men’s National Team is under the direction of the U.S. Men’s National Team Advisory Group, led by Jim Johannson, assistant executive director of hockey operations for USA Hockey. Other members include NHL general managers Stan Bowman (Chicago), Brian Burke (Toronto), Paul Holmgren (Philadelphia), Dean Lombardi (Los Angeles), David Poile (Nashville), Ray Shero (Pittsburgh) and Dale Tallon (Florida) and Pittsburgh Penguins pro scout Don Waddell ... USA Hockey's international council, chaired by Tony Rossi, vice president of USA Hockey, has oversight responsibilities for all U.S. national teams ... Sixteen teams will compete at 2012 IIHF Men's World Championship. There will be two groups of eight with one group playing in Helsinki, Finland, and the other playing in Stockholm, Sweden. The semifinals and medal games will be conducted in Helsinski ... NBC Sports will televise all Team USA games in the 2012 IIHF Men's World Championship. The complete television schedule is available here.

SCHEDULE

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AWAY
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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 x - MTL 77 47 22 8 203 174 102
2 x - NYR 75 47 21 7 228 177 101
3 x - TBL 77 47 23 7 249 201 101
4 PIT 76 42 23 11 210 190 95
5 NYI 77 45 27 5 235 215 95
6 DET 75 40 23 12 220 206 92
7 WSH 76 41 25 10 223 188 92
8 BOS 76 38 25 13 201 196 89
9 OTT 75 37 26 12 218 203 86
10 FLA 76 35 26 15 190 207 85
11 PHI 76 30 29 17 198 219 77
12 CBJ 75 36 35 4 207 232 76
13 NJD 76 31 33 12 168 194 74
14 CAR 75 28 36 11 174 204 67
15 TOR 76 28 42 6 198 244 62
16 BUF 76 21 47 8 148 255 50

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Tavares 77 34 43 -2 77
R. Strome 76 16 32 20 48
K. Okposo 55 16 31 -11 47
F. Nielsen 76 14 28 8 42
B. Nelson 77 19 22 7 41
A. Lee 71 23 16 10 39
J. Bailey 65 15 23 3 38
J. Boychuk 67 8 25 9 33
N. Leddy 73 10 21 14 31
T. Hamonic 67 5 26 16 31
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Halak 36 16 2 .913 2.42
C. Johnson 8 8 1 .889 3.08

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