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U.S. falls despite shot barrage by Sabres' Eichel

Jack Eichel and his U.S. teammates spent most of game buzzing Germany’s net. Germany spent all of the postgame celebrating.

With help from its chanting home crowd, Germany dropped the United States, 2-1, Friday in their opening game of the world championships. Patrick Hager snapped a 1-1 tie with 6:02 to play, and goaltender Thomas Greiss finished with 42 saves to thwart a relentless U.S. attack.

Eichel took a game-high 10 shots, while linemates Johnny Gaudreau (seven) and Anders Lee (five) combined for 12. Greiss and his goal posts kept the Americans’ top line without a point.

Germany’s Tobias Rieder opened the scoring with 10:50 gone. Greiss kept the Cologne crowd happy by keeping the United States off the board until nine minutes remained. U.S. defenseman Connor Murphy finally beat the New York Islanders netminder to tie the game.

Despite getting outshot, 20-6, in the third, the Germans got the winner and the victory. Eichel skated 22:01. U.S. goaltender Jimmy Howard made 25 saves.

The United States next plays Sunday against Denmark (10:15 a.m., NHL Network).

Meanwhile, in Paris, Ryan O’Reilly scored the opening goal in Canada’s 4-1 victory over Czech Republic. The Sabres center skated 19:26 and found the net on his only shot.

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