Team USA U-18s Pull Away From Nationally-Ranked Men's Hockey in Third Period

Sophomore Nikita Babintsev got the start in goal Tuesday against the Americans. (Action photo by Patrick Stewart)
Sophomore Nikita Babintsev got the start in goal Tuesday against the Americans. (Action photo by Patrick Stewart)

PLYMOUTH, Mich.--The United States National Team Development Program Under-18 (USNTDP) squad scored three goals in each of the last two periods en route to an 8-3 exhibition victory over the visiting Adrian College men's hockey team on Tuesday at USA Hockey Arena.

Junior Dino Balsamo, freshman Rex Moe and senior Bryan Yim scored for the Bulldogs, who were tied 2-2 after 20 minutes. Balsamo and Yim both had a goal and an assist to pace Adrian offensively.

Beginning with Marshall Warren's tally 2 minutes and 4 seconds after the opening face-off, the teams alternated four goals in a span of 7:53 and both had 10 shots in the first period. Moe tied it 1-1 at 5:04 and Yim equalized 2-2 at 9:57.

Matthew Boldy broke the 2-2 tie with a power-play goal with 5:03 gone in the second period and Jack Hughes scored 44 seconds later, igniting a streak of five unanswered goals into the third for Team USA.

Sophomore Nikita Babintsev got the start in goal for the Bulldogs, making 43 saves on 50 shots faced. Freshman Tymen Edelkoort played the final 8:08 and posted a save on two shots faced. Spencer Knight stopped 29 of 32 shots in the USNTDP U-18 cage.

Boldy also added three assists for a four-point night, Alex Turcotte also had a goal and three assists, and Hughes finished with two goals.

The Americans outshot Adrian 52 to 32. Team USA was 2-for-4 on the power-play while Adrian found the back of the net on its only man-advantage chance.

Per NCAA rules, this exhibition game will not count toward the Bulldogs' record or statistics. Adrian is 3-7 lifetime against the USNTDP U-18 team, which trains aspiring hockey players to become National Hockey League and NCAA Division I prospects.

Adrian will start the 2019 calendar year in earnest this weekend with a pair of Northern Collegiate Hockey Association road games against Lake Forest (Friday at 4:30 p.m. ET) and Aurora (Saturday at 3:50 p.m. ET).

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