July 7, 2013
KAZAN, Russia -- Attackers Paul Reynolds and Jack Fellner each scored a hat trick for Team USA, which defeated Montenegro, 9-8, on July 7 in a Group B Preliminary Round matchup at the World University Games in Kazan, Russia.
In addition to the two hat tricks by the Americans, Alec Zwaneveld scored twice for Team USA in the win.
Attacker Chris Fahlsing opened the scoring with a cross-cage power play goal at the 5:14 mark of the first period. Center Zwaneveld gave Team USA a 2-0 lead (4:20), firing over the top of the defense at two meters off a feed from defender Chris Wendt. Jovan Saric trimmed the lead to 2-1 with a counter attack goal after a turnover with 19 seconds left.
Fellner scored back-to-back power play goals (6:14 and 4:09) as the Americans extended their lead to 4-1. Center Lucas Reynolds and defender Anthony Daboub picked up assists on Fellner's goals. Team USA would take a 5-1 lead into the break after Zwaneveld scored his second goal of the game with 1:24 left in the second quarter. Zwaneveld's goal was on a 6-on-5 opportunity and was assisted by utility Danny McClintick.
Both teams played solid defense in the third period, allowing just one goal. Team USA built its lead to 6-1 with an exclusion goal by attacker Paul Reynolds with a cross-cage goal (second assist for McClintick). Nemanja Vico cut the lead to 6-2 with a power play goal with 4:51 left in the third period.
Montenegro would erupt for six goals in the fourth period to make a furious rally. Marko Gopcevic trimmed the lead to 6-3 with an extra man score with 7:01 left in the fourth period. Then Saric made it 6-4 with a cross-cage goal at full strength at the 6:16 mark. Paul Reynolds would push it to 7-4 with a great gap drive and finish with 5:59 to go (assist by Wendt). Marko Vukmirovic trimmed the lead to 7-5 with a lob shot with 5:35 remaining. Then Paul Reynolds drew a penalty shot on another drive and he converted it to put the Americans up 8-5, completing his hat trick with 5:13 to go. But Montenegro would cut the lead to 8-6 on a hat trick by Saric with 3:47 remaining. But Fellner would answer with a hat trick of his own, pushing the lead to 9-6 with a low skip shot nearside (3:27). Nikola Murisic would score back-to-back goals in front of the cage (1:42 and 0:04) to end the scoring at 9-8.
Team USA goalkeeper Garrett Danner played a stellar game in goal and was credited with 12 saves. Dejan Lazovic was credited with five stops in the cage for Montenegro.
Ryder Roberts and Wendt each won one sprint for Team USA. Wendt finished with a game-high three assists and McClintick chipped in two more. Wendt also had the only steal for Team USA while McClintick registered two of Team USA's seven field blocks.
Up next for Team USA is a pool play game against defending World University Games champion, Serbia, which defeated Montenegro, 9-5, but is coming off an 8-7 loss to Italy. The game will be at 3:00 a.m. (PT) on July 8. Today's game vs. Montenegro was broadcast live on ESPNU and will be replayed on ESPNU on Sunday, July 7 at 2:30 p.m. (PT) and again at 10:30 p.m. (PT).
Montenegro vs. USA
Montenegro Goals: Jovan Saric 3, Nikola Murisic 2, Nemanja Vico, Marko Gopcevic, Marko Vukmirovic
Montenegro Saves: Dejan Lazovic 5