The US Under-18 team faced off against the Czech Republic earlier today in the quarterfinal of the World U18 hockey championships, and cruised to an easy 6-0 victory over the Czechs. The win advances the US to the semifinals tomorrow against Finland. On the other side of the draw, Russia almost blew a 4-0 lead in the final five minutes against Switzerland, but held on to win 4-3 to advance and face Sweden in the other semifinal.
The semifinal game between the US and Finland should be an interesting match-up of the US's deep defensive depth against the electric Finnish first line with Teemu Pulkkinen, Mikael Granlund, and Joonas Donskoi. Those three are first, fifth, and tenth in tournament scoring respectively.
Of course the USA-Finland game tomorrow morning will just be the warm-up for the big match-up following it when Canada takes on heavily-favored(they have to be, right?) Latvia in the tournament's relegation round.