Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Neil: Leaving the US hockey team regrets missed opportunities


BEIJING – The quarter-final match between Team USA and Slovakia no one wanted it to end on Wednesday ended with a penalty shootout to decide who would advance to the medal role in the men’s Olympic hockey tournament.

do you know why? Those who have been involved in losing penalty shootouts say they have lost a match, which is hard to accept. So missing an Olympic medal because of losing a penalty shootout is likely to be painful for a very long time.

And this is where Team USA’s tour of the Indoor National Stadium ended. He was 47.3 seconds short of a trip to the semi-finals when Marek Hrivik rebounded to equalize the score 2-2 and impose an additional 10 3-on-3 minutes. After neither team scored in extra time, the match went to penalties. And now Team USA is knocked out of the tournament in the quarter-finals of the second Olympics in a row.

And he scored only one goal during the penalty shootout, through Slovakia striker Peter Celiaric, who beat American goalkeeper Strauss-Mann on his right. Mann thought he controlled the shot, but Cehlarik’s quick firing made the difference.

“You kind of dream about playing those games that are going to finish, whether it’s 2-1 a minute ago or extra time, [or] “I was just trying to take the chance and I felt good, but obviously I didn’t go the way I wanted to,” said Mann, who saved 34 balls in 70 minutes of play.

USA’s Andy Miele had a chance to extend the penalty shootout, but Patrick Ribar thwarted his attempt, sending Slovakia into a delirium as Team USA fell to a stunned silence.

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“It’s hard to put it into words now because you think you have a chance to do great things here and, you know, you’re going to cut things down a bit,” said defender Stephen Kamfer. “So, that’s a little frustrating.”

Social media went bananas after the shootout, as many Michiganders wanted Matty Beners to be in the shootout. Penners looked peppy during the extra-time period, earning a few shots on target and proving to be a handful. But Team USA coach David Quinn watches the team work on penalty kicks during each practice and builds their shot lineup accordingly.

“We had a very good idea of ​​who we were going to choose,” Quinn said.

Youngest team in the tournament Older played most of its run. The 15 college players on the list—including those from the Gophers, Minnesota Duluth, and St. Cloud State and Minnesota State Mankato – They do themselves well, and their speed, skill and intelligence earned them a goodbye to the quarter-finals. And many members of this team will be skating for NHL clubs sooner rather than later.

Wednesday’s third period was probably the only period of the tournament where they looked like kids. Team USA needed a missed goal but couldn’t make it. Even as Slovakia started a show in the penalty area, the United States wasted power games. This included a 1:37 span in which he gained a two-fold advantage but struggled to land the ball into the net.

“It’s really a vanilla period in a lot of ways,” Quinn said. “We got 5-on-3 and that was really a game-changer. I mean, when you have 5-on-3 and that scenario you don’t take advantage of, you give that other team a lot of hope, and they benefit.”

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Slovakia led 1-0 after 17-year-old Juraj Slafkovsky – one of the world’s top teen hockey players – grabbed a disc with space in front of the net and buried a shot past Mann with 8:15 left in the first half. Slovakia’s financial check was effective there, keeping the disc at the US end while Slavkovsky was released. This was the third game in a row that Team USA had fallen behind early.

But there was a response, as Nick Abruzis walked a forehand into a backhand through Ribar’s legs to equalize the score with 45.7 seconds left. Sam Hentigs, not the Cleveland bowler but the US forward from New Brighton and St Cloud State, scored 11:04 to play in the second to break the tie.

The Americans had the lead but failed to add it. They forced things out at times, when playing simple and keeping the disc at the end of Slovakia might pay off.

It was a crushing loss for a team that seemed to be deteriorating quickly and had a lot of talent. She also had seven players from Minnesota, with two others who were born elsewhere but play at Minnesota colleges.

But one bad term can cost a team a championship. That bad period sent the US team into overtime. Then to the penalty shootout.

Then he gets out of the Olympics.

“We were actually kidding,” Quinn said. “We still haven’t lost a match, really. I mean, we lost penalty shootouts, right?

“That’s the frustrating part.”

An earlier version misidentified the coach of Team USA.

Inmaculada Fuertes
Inmaculada Fuertes

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