Jack Eichel and Chase DeLeo scored in a shootout to help the U.S. men's hockey team beat defending champion Finland, 2-1, on Friday in their round-robin opener in the World Junior Championship in Montreal.
Eichel is a freshman at Boston University, and DeLeo plays for Portland in the Western Hockey League.
"We knew it was going to be a tough game," said Eichel, a top prospect in the 2015 NHL draft. "They're the defending champs, and you've got to give them a lot of credit. They played a very close-checking game. It's really good for us to get the win. Hopefully, we can build off that and get some confidence."
Mikko Rantanen scored for Finland, and Boston College's Alex Tuch tied it on a first-period power play. Boston College's Thatcher Demko made 29 saves for the Americans, and Ville Husso stopped 36 shots for Finland.
"I thought we got better as the game went on," Demko said. "It's a good starting point, and something we can work forward from."
In the other Group A game, Canada opened with a dominant 8-0 victory over Slovakia.
In Group B in Toronto, Russia beat Denmark, 3-2, in a shootout, and Sweden topped the Czech Republic, 5-2.
Former Neumann player Mike Hedden, who is currently playing in the Finnish Elite League Liiga, is a member of the Canadian national team competing in the Spengler Cup in Davos, Switzerland. Canada opened with a 2-1 loss to HC Davos on Friday.
Hedden, who played in 108 games for Neumann during the 2005-2009 seasons, holds the Knights' record for career goals with 96.
SOCCER John Terry scored for the second straight game and Diego Costa grabbed his 13th goal of the season as Chelsea beat West Ham, 2-0, to stay top of the Premier League.
Wayne Rooney scored twice in the first half as resurgent Manchester United easily beat Newcastle, 3-1, to strengthen its grip on third place in the Premier League.
HORSE RACING Shared Belief won the $300,000 Malibu Stakes for 3-year-olds by a neck on opening day of Santa Anita's winter meet. With his third Grade 1 victory this year and fourth overall, Shared Belief reinserted himself into Eclipse Award consideration for divisional and Horse of the Year honors.