WJC: Santini Scores In US Rout of Germany

Bruce Bennett

All eyes turn to Tuesday's game against Canada after the US's 8-0 win over Germany

Move along, folks. Nothing to see here. Poor Germany was on the receiving end of their third consecutive rout today, as the United States lit up the Germans for 8 goals in an 8-0 rout to pick up their third win at the World Junior Championships.

Following Canada's shocking shootout loss to the Czech Republic yesterday, the US now is in sole possession of first place in Group A. Now, with any kind of win against the Canadians on New Year's Eve (11:30 AM, NHL Network) - regulation, overtime, or shootout - the US will win Group A and face the fourth place team in Group B in the quarterfinals, which begin on Thursday.

Anthony Stolarz got the start in net for the US and shut out Germany, but he was rarely tested. On the offensive end, the Americans once again got many players involved in the party, with seven different goal scorers combining for the US's 8 goals.

Most notably from a BC perspective, Steve Santini got on the board with his first goal of the tournament, playing in a new role. US coach Don Lucia planted Santini in front of the net on a US power play in the third period, and he was there to tip home a shot by Matt Grzelyck for the US's 7th goal. That was Santini's first time playing in front of the net on the power play in this tournament, and he hasn't played in that role at BC either. It will be interesting to see if he continues to get placed in front of the net on the power play.

Let us all be thankful that Notre Dame freshman Vince Hinastroza will miss Frozen Fenway. He continues to impress for the US, notching another pair of goals today. Also scoring for the US today: Hudson Fasching (Minnesota), Nick Kerdiles (Wisconsin), Will Butcher (Denver), Riley Barber (Miami), and Grzelyck. So, it was another great day for college hockey products.

Ian McCoshen remains one of the only US players who have not scored in the tournament. But hey, there would be no better time than Tuesday to get it going.

It's unfortunate that Tuesday's game largely overlaps with the bowl game, because it's going to be must-see TV. USA vs. Canada at World Juniors always is. The Canadians have one more game before Tuesday, facing Slovakia tomorrow and hoping to get back on track after their shocking loss to the Czechs. For the US, all that's left to do is wait for the Canadians.

Host Sweden plays Norway in the day's only other game today, at 11:30 AM. Tomorrow features two televised games on NHL Network: Czech Republic vs. Germany at 7:30 AM, and Canada vs. Slovakia at 11:30. Russia will also face Finland at 9:00 in a big Group B matchup.

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