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U.S. outlasts Russia, advances to world juniors gold-medal game


The U.S. managed a slim 2-1 win against Russian on Friday, thus booking a ticket to the gold-medal game of the 2019 World Junior Hockey Championship.

Finland ended up clobbering Switzerland 6-1 in the other semifinal match on Friday. With that, the U.S. will face Finland in the gold-medal game on Saturday night (8 p.m. ET; NHLN, TSN), and the action will take place at Rogers Arena.

The United States scored the first two goals of the game, with Islanders first-rounder Oliver Wahlstrom opening the scoring, while Sharks prospect Alexander Chmelevski notched what would eventually stand as the game-winner. Potential 2019 first overall pick Jack Hughes collected an assist on that GWG:

Russia generated a 33-24 shots on goal advantage in this one, including a 14-6 edge as they attempted to tie things up in the third period. They couldn’t beat Cayden Primeau more than once, although there were some tense moments for the U.S., particularly when defenseman Phil Kemp barely kept this puck out of the net:

The U.S. ended up beating Russia for a bronze medal in last year’s tournament, while they managed to win gold in 2017. This continues to be an impressive run for Jack Hughes, not to mention his brother Quinn.

MORE: Your 2018-19 NHL on NBC TV schedule

James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.