U.S. beats Czech Republic to advance to WJC semifinals
Czech Republic's Ondrej Machala looks on as members of the United States celebrate an empty net goal during the third period of World Junior quarterfinal action.
Jack Hughes returned to the lineup, and the United States defeated the Czech Republic 3-1 in the quarterfinal of the World Junior Championship in Victoria, British Columbia, on Wednesday night.
Hughes, a National Team Development Program center and projected to be first overall pick of the 2019 NHL draft, had an assist as Team USA advanced to Friday’s semifinal in Vancouver against Russia, which hammered Slovakia 8-3 on Wednesday.
Josh Norris (University of Michigan, Oxford), Noah Cates and Alexander Chmelevski scored for the U.S., and Cayden Primeau made 18 saves.
"It's the semifinals, right?" Jack Hughes said on the International Ice Hockey Federation website. "We're going to get everyone's best now. It's crunch time.
“I know the Russians are really skilled and have a lot of really good players. The Slovaks have really good goaltending and a team that plays really hard. So it should be tough whoever we play. I'm excited for it."
There were two upsets as Finland eliminated Canada 2-1 in overtime and Switzerland shocked Sweden 2-0.