Dylan Larkin (Waterford, Mich.) nearly opened the scoring right from the opening faceoff when he corraled the puck in the offensive zone and cut across the crease for a chance that was deflected away from goal.
Just past the midway point of the frame, a U.S. powerplay opportunity ended with James van Riemsdyk (Middletown, N.J.) giving the U.S. a 1-0 lead. With just :34 left on the man-advantage, Kane fired a slapshot off the glove of Great Britain’s goaltender Ben Bowns that saw the puck fall in the crease where van Riemsdyk was able to bat it into goal for the game’s opening goal.
Alex DeBrincat (Farmington Hills, Mich.) nearly doubled the U.S. lead with 5:23 to play in the frame but his chance from the left side of goal was smothered by Bowns.
Less than a minute later, Great Britain evened the score, 1-1, when Mike Hammond was able to lift his own rebound over the shoulder of an outstretched Thatcher Demko (San Diego, Calif.).
Jack Hughes (Orlando, Fla.) almost regained the U.S. lead in the closing minutes of the frame when he pounced on a loose puck in the slot and rang a shot of the post.
The middle stanza opened with the U.S. generating a number of scoring chances before it looked as though they scored at the seven-minute mark. off a net-front deflection by Larkin. After video review, however, it was deemed that Larkin’s deflection in front of the net was above the crossbar and therefore waved off.
With the U.S. still pressing, Clayton Keller (St. Louis, Mo.) rewarded the team’s efforts just two minutes later with a breakaway tally. The play started in the neutral zone with Quinn Hughes (Orlando, Fla.) surveying the ice before sending a sharp pass towards the offensive blue line for Keller to slip between Great Britain’s defenders and tuck the puck past Bowns for a 2-1 U.S. advantage.
Chris Kreider (Boxford, Mass.) doubled the U.S. lead just 2:13 later by converting on a nice passing play from Jack Eichel (North Chelmsford, Mass.) and Ryan Suter (Madison, Wis.). Suter created the play by holding the puck at the blue line and dishing it down low to Eichel who carried the puck below the goal line before feeding Kreider at the top of the crease for a 3-1 U.S. advantage.
With 2:06 to play in the frame, DeBrincat made it 4-1 for Team USA with his fourth goal of the tournament. Kane initiated the goal from behind Great Britain’s net by centering the puck to the top of the crease where an initial attempt by Derek Ryan (Spokane, Wash.) ended with him tipping the puck back to DeBrincat for a one-timer goal.
In the final seconds of the period, Great Britain’s Brett Perlini found a loose puck in the slot and beat Demko to cut the U.S. lead to 4-2 entering the second intermission.
The third stanza opened with Kane scoring one minute into play when a net-front scrum ended with Kane sliding the puck beneath a pair of defenders to regain a three-goal U.S. lead.
Ryan then scored his first goal of the tournament at the 9:10 mark off assists from Luke Glendening (Grand Rapids, Mich.) and Noah Hanifin (Norwood, Mass.) to make it 6-2 in favor of the U.S.
Four minutes later, Demko stood tall on a 2-on-1 Great Britain rush by punching the puck out of harm’s way with his blocker.
With 3:32 to play in regulation, Ben Davies converted for Great Britain to account for the 6-3 final.
Demko finished with 20 saves for his second tournament win.