Olympic Hockey: Team USA Scores Six Goals In First Period, Defeats Finland, 6-1

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Team USA’s last Olympic medal on foreign soil since came in 1972, when they won silver in Sapporo, Japan.

In their semifinal game against Finland, it took the team 12:46 to guarantee they end that streak.

Patrick Kane (Chicago Blackhawks) scored two goals in the first period to lead Team USA to victory, 6-1, over Team Finland in their semifinal game in Vancouver.

The United States only needed the opening 12:46 of the first period to put the game out of reach. Ryan Malone (Tampa Bay Lightning) began the scoring merely 2:04 into the first period. Finnish goaltender Miikka Kiprusoff (Calgary Flames) came out to the slot to play a loose puck. Malone intercepted his pass at the blue line and fired the puck into the empty net for the goal, his third of the Olympics.

Zach Parise (New Jersey Devils) stretched the lead to two with a powerplay goal at 6:22 of the period. With Janne Niskala in the box for interference, Brian Rafalski (Detroit Red Wings) shot the puck from the point. The puck found Paul Statsny (Colorado Avalanche) on the crease. Statsny passed the puck to a streaking Parise, who one-timed the puck to the top of the net for the goal.

Then the rout was on.

Erik Johnson (St. Louis Blues) extended the lead to three with a powerplay goal at 8:36 of the period. Johnson got a pass from Joe Pavelski (San Jose Sharks) and ripped a shot from the right circle that beat Kiprusoff for the goal.

Then it was Kane’s time to shine.

Kane scored his first goal of the period at 10:08 of the first period. Kane collected the rebound from his backhand shot and put the puck into the net for the goal.

After that goal, Kiprusoff removed himself from the game. He faced seven shots, only making three saves.

Kane welcomed new goaltender Niklas Backstrom (Minnesota Wild) to the game with his second goal at 12:31 of the period. Rafalski passed the puck to Kane, who fired a shot past Backstrom for the goal.

Statsny ended the American scoring run with his goal twenty seconds later. Jamie Langenbrunner (New Jersey Devils) sent a pass to Statsny, who one-timed the pass by Backstrom’s glove for the goal

Team USA goalie Ryan Miller (Buffalo Sabres) finished with 18 saves before being replaced by Tim Thomas (Boston Bruins) 8:49 into the third period. Thomas finished with six saves.

The USA will face the winner of tonight’s Canada-Slovakia in the gold-medal game Sunday (3:15, NBC).

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