Russia continually went to the penalty box. Jack Eichel and the Americans made them pay.
Eichel set up the tiebreaking goal with 7:03 to play Tuesday, giving the United States a 5-3 victory over Russia at the world championships. The Americans vaulted past the Russians to claim first place in Group A in Cologne, Germany.
The United States has won six straight games after losing to host Germany in the opening game. The quarterfinals are Thursday, with the matchups still to be determined.
The Russians took eight penalties, and the Americans struck for two power-play goals. The winner came with help from Eichel.
The Sabres center controlled the puck along the left boards before sending a cross-ice pass to Johnny Gaudreau. The Calgary forward hit Anders Lee in front, giving the United States the lead in the arena filled with Russian fans.
Jack Eichel's power-play assist helps give USA a 4-3 lead over Russia late in third. pic.twitter.com/CgHhBI11rZ
— John Vogl (@BuffNewsVogl) May 16, 2017
Brock Nelson sealed the victory with an empty-net goal with 22 seconds remaining.
Eichel has five assists in the seven tournament games. He had four shots against the Russians while skating 19:23.
The Americans outshot the Russians, 35-19, including 16-3 in the opening period as Russia went to the box five times.
Defenseman Viktor Antipin, who is expected to sign with Buffalo following the tournament, was named Russia's player of the game. He had one shot in 17:28 of ice time, including significant short-handed minutes.
Dylan Larkin and Viktor Antipin named MVP's of the game. pic.twitter.com/L8koXKToo9
— Aivis Kalniņš (@A_Kalnins) May 16, 2017