Photo by Tom Baker - Utica College.
UTICA, N.Y. - Alex Tuch (Baldwinsville, N.Y.) scored the lone goal as the U.S. National Under-18 Team was defeated by Utica College, 4-1, here tonight at the Utica Memorial Auditorium. With the loss, Team USA drops to 4-4-0 (W-L-T) versus collegiate opponents this season.
Team USA opened scoring at 14:49 while skating with the man advantage. Jack Eichel (North Chelmsford, Mass.) ripped a shot that clanged off the crossbar and bounced out into the attacking zone. Corralling the rebound, Tuch scored into the empty net. Sonny Milano (Massapequa, N.Y.) also assisted on the play.
Utica College scored three goals in the second stanza to take a 3-1 lead. The Pioneers registered a power-play goal just 29 seconds into the frame and followed with an even-strength tally at 5:47. With 1:15 remaining in the frame, Utica extended its lead to two scores.
The second power-play marker for Utica came at 4:29 of the final period. The goal distanced the Pioneers from the Under-18 Team, 4-1. Team USA put 11 shots on net in an attempt to ignite a comeback, but did not find the back of the net.
Blake Weyrick (Ojai, Calif.) made 27 saves in the loss for Team USA, while Marcus Zelzer turned aside 29 shots in the win for the Pioneers.
The U.S. National Under-18 Team will travel to Troy, N.Y. to face RPI tomorrow afternoon at 4 p.m. EST. The game will be held at the Houston Field House.
Blake Weyrick made his first appearance in net since Sept. 29, 2013, when the U18s faced the Chicago Steel of the United States Hockey League ... This was the second meeting between the two squads. The Under-18 Team won the only previous matchup, 10-1, on Oct. 23, 2009 ... Scott Birnstill (Commack, N.Y./2003-04) is the lone NTDP alum to skate for the Pioneers ... Follow the NTDP on Twitter ... Like the NTDP on Facebook ... Download the Sport Ngin Mobile App for Apple iOS and Android devices and follow the U.S. National Under-17 and Under-18 Teams. Fans, parents, athletes, and coaches now have unprecedented access to scores, stats, schedules, photos, and more. The app is free and allows users to track scores and news updates from one team. Those wishing to follow more than one team can make a simple in-app purchase of $1.99. Click here to download the app.