A late push by the United States wasn’t enough to pull them even with Slovakia as they fell to the Slovaks, 2-1, in a preliminary round matchup.
After a scoreless first period, Marian Hossa (Atlanta Thrashers) scored a power play goal in the second to open the game’s scoring. Hossa broke away from Brian Rolston (Minnesota Wild) and stepped into the right circle, where he fired a quick shot past Rick DiPietro (New York Islanders).
Team USA tied the game with a power play goal of their own just minutes later, when Rolston ripped a long shot past Peter Budaj (Colorado Avalanche).
Peter Bondra (Thrashers) scored the game’s final goal in the third period, taking a pass in the slot from behind the net by Mirsoslav Satan (Islanders) and banging it by DiPietro before the American defenders could collapse onto him.
Slovakia moved to 3-0 with the win, locking up their spot in the medal round, while the United States dropped to 1-1-1.
The Americans will need to earn a win over Russia or Sweden to have chance of advancing to the medal round.