Team USA dominates against Germany, goes on to win first game at Hlinka Gretzky Cup

In its first game of the tournament, seven different skaters get on the scoreboard for the Americans.


RED DEER, Alberta — After a strong showing in their exhibition win over Slovakia on Friday, Team USA continued to dominate in their first game of the Hlinka Gretzky Cup with a 8-1 victory over Germany on Sunday, July 31.

Five minutes into the first period, Will Whitelaw of Rosemount, Minnesota, hit the back of the net first to give Team USA the early lead. Just under two minutes later, it was Carey Terrance who extended the lead to 2-0. Germany's Timo Ruckdaschel took a tripping penalty with one minute to go in the opening period, which put Team USA on the power-play heading into the second.

Thirty-eight seconds into the second period, Joe Connor put another one on the board for Team USA on the man advantage to make it 3-0. Germany's Robin Rieke took a tripping penalty to set up another Team USA power play at 1:19, and Joe Gramer of Moorhead, Minnesota, lit the lamp to make it 4-0. Germany made a goaltender change 5:43 in the second as Dean Doge came in net. Germany took a couple more penalties in the second, and while shorthanded Linus Brandl gave Germany their first goal of the night to make it 4-1.

Team USA then went on to score three unanswered goals. One came unassisted from Will McDonough before the end of the second period, and come the third Andrew Strathmann and Griffin Erdman also scored one of their own. The final goal came from Will Whitelaw on the power play for his second of the night. Whitelaw and Strathmann each finished the night with three points.

Team USA will play again Monday against Finland at 4 p.m. in the preliminary round. Finland lost their opening game of the tournament 4-3 in a shootout against Czechia.


Kirsten Krull covers juniors and prospects for The Rink Live. She is a 2020 St. Cloud State graduate, and has been working in the hockey world for over six years, covering many levels of the game from juniors to the NHL.
What to read next
A rep from Minnesota Sports and Events traveled to Canada for the 2023 World Juniors to see what the fuss is all about, and they plan to bid on bringing the 2026 tournament to the State of Hockey.
The Americans technically had their worst finish in tournament history, but they'll still be coming home with a bronze medal after a 5-0 win to Finland.
Sweden pulled off a 2-1 win over the Americans to advance to the gold-medal game. It's the first time in history that Team USA will not play for gold.
Team Canada was without captain Jocelyn Amos (not dressed) and leading scorer Alex Law (suspended) in the rivalry game at the U18 Women's Worlds