Strome hat trick helps Canada advance to U-18 final

Erie Otters forward Dylan Strome paced Canada with three goals against the U.S. at the Ivan Hlinka...

Erie Otters forward Dylan Strome paced Canada with three goals against the U.S. at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Cup on Friday, Aug. 15, 2014. (Jeffrey Ougler/QMI Agency/Files)

QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:28 PM ET

Canada will play in their seventh straight gold medal game at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Cup after routing the United States 11-5 on Friday in Piestany, Slovakia.

Erie Otters centre Dylan Strome, of Mississauga, Ont., paced Canada with a hat trick while Prince George Cougars centre Jansen Harkins, of North Vancouver, B.C., and Saginaw Spirit centre Mitchell Stephens, of Peterborough, Ont., also chipped in with a goal and two assists.

Ottawa 67s centre Travis Konecny, of Clachan, Ont., also added two goals.

"We had a great day off (Thursday) and got re-energized after a tough three games in three days and today we competed shift-to-shift and won our battles," Canadian head coach Jody Hull told the official tournament website.

"Heading into the tournament we knew we were going to have a lot of depth up front, and again, it's a team game and we're not relying on two or three guys to do all the scoring. Every guy is capable of scoring and we're seeing that in this tournament."

Canada led 3-1 after the first period with a pair from Strome and a short-handed effort from Harkins. After allowing the U.S. to cut the lead to one early in the second, goals from Mathew Barzal, of Coquitlam, B.C., and Strome's third of the game chased American netminder Evan Sarthou at 9:58.

The offence didn't stop there as Canada added three more goals against U.S. goaltender Matthew Jurusik to take a commanding 8-3 lead heading to the third.

Calgary native Zach Sawchenko of the Moose Jaw Warriors stopped 24 of 29 shots while Canada pounded the American netminders with 48 shots.

Canada faces host Czech Republic at Breclav in the final on Saturday.


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