TORINO, Italy – The U.S. University Select Team fell to Slovakia, 3-2, in a tightly contested battle at the 2007 Winter World University Games today. Scott Eberenz (Springfield N.J./University of Rhode Island) and Anthony Bonacorso (Munhall, Pa./Arizona State University) notched a goal apiece for Team USA, while goaltender Anthony Feyock (Johnstown, Pa./University of Rhode Island) made 31 saves in a losing effort.
“I was very proud of the way our guys battled back tonight,” said Team USA Head Coach Chad Cassel (Champaign, Ill.). “It would have been easy to fold when Slovakia went up 3-1, but our guys came right back and scored. We produced a lot of pressure at the end of the game, but just couldn’t finish.”
Slovakia took a 1-0 lead after one period on a slapshot from the point by Jan Galko that beat a screened Feyock high to the glove side at 3:42.
Team USA tied the game, 1-1, on Eberenz’s power-play tally at the 19:49 mark of the second period. After Ryan Tomassoni (Carol Stream, Ill./Robert Morris College) fired a shot from the high slot, four U.S. players crashed the net hard. Mike Curran (Devon, Pa./University of Rhode Island) corralled the rebound and tapped it over to Eberenz, who chipped the puck over the goal line.
Slovakia scored two quick goals at the beginning of the third period. Severin Gonczi buried a rebound from the right faceoff circle at 2:13, followed by a Pavol Polacek shot that took an odd bounce on its way to the net and skipped over Feyock’s left pad at 2:39.
Bonacorso responded for Team USA when he took a feed from Drew Heredia (Wadsworth, Ill./University of Illinois) at 3:07 and fired a shot from the point that went over Slovakian goaltender Michal Stieranka’s right shoulder and into the net.
With Slovakia’s Henrich Ruckay in the penalty box at 19:06 for hooking and Feyock relegated to the bench for an extra attacker, Team USA made one last run at tying the game. Lukas DeLorenzo (Export, Pa./Penn State University) had a solid opportunity with seven seconds remaining, but his wrist shot from the low slot was turned away by Stieranka.
NOTES: The United States fell to 0-2-0 following the loss, while Slovakia improved to 2-0-0 … Tonight’s game marked the second meeting between the two countries since the United States returned to the Winter World University Games in 2001 with players from the American Collegiate Hockey Association. Team USA earned a 2-1 victory over Slovakia on January 14, 2005.
Scoring By Period
USA 0-1-1 -- 3
SVK 1-0-2 -- 2
First Period – Scoring: 1, SVK, Galko (Ruckay), 3:42 (pp). Penalties: USA, DeLorenzo (hooking), 2:37; USA, Chubirka (tripping), 5:01; USA, Biliouris (hooking), 5:57; SVK, Liptak (interference), 8:17; SVK, Vojtek (interference), 10:57; SVK, Chrenko (slashing), 16:40; SVK, Kolnik (holding), 17:33; SVK, Klement (charging), 18:28.
Second Period – Scoring: 2, USA, Eberenz (Curran, Tomassoni), 19:49 (pp). Penalties: USA, Kuehn (illegal equipment), 2:19; USA, Bonacorso (kneeing), 5: 32; USA, Podelnyk (hooking), 9:33; USA, Schmitt (hooking), 13: 14; USA, Cash (high sticking), 16:08; SVK, Klein (hooking), 17: 57.
Third Period – Scoring: 3, SVK, Gonczi (Liptak), 2:13 (pp); 4, SVK, Polacek (Huntata), 2:39; 5, USA, Bonacorso (Heredia), 3:07. Penalties: USA, Bench Minor (delay of game), 1:47; USA, Jordan (hooking), 4:56; SVK, Vojtek (interference), 7:18; USA, Krebsbach (delay of game), 10:48; SVK, Chrenko (hooking), 12:30; SVK, Ruckay (hooking), 19:06.
Shots By Period 1 2 3 Total
SVK 11 16 7 34
USA 8 8 7 23
Goaltending (SH-SV) 1 2 3 Total
USA, Feyock, 58:36 11-10 16-16 7-5 34-31
SVK, Stieranka, 59:49 8-8 8-7 7-6 23-21
SVK, Surek, :11 x-x 0-0 x-x 0-0
Power Play: USA 1-9; SVK 2-11
Penalties: USA 11-22; SVK 9-18