Sunday, April 25, 2010

Frankie Simonelli, Team USA U18's Win GOLD

Back. To. Back.

The United States Under 18 team dispatched Sweden 3-1 on Friday to claim it's second straight Under 18 Gold Medal in Belarus. The United States squad, which features 2010 Wisconsin defensive recruit Frankie Simonelli lost only once during it's trip to Europe, an opening game loss to eventual silver medalist Sweden.

The United States got solid play in the nets from future first round NHL draft pick Jack Campbell. Campbell allowed just 5 goals against in his 6 games played. He stopped 33 shots in the Gold Medal game. Campbell stopped 96.5% of his shots en route to being named the best goalkeeper of the tournament by the IIHF.

Simonelli, who is expected to immediately step into the Wisconsin lineup next season, played in all seven games for the red, white, and blue. He did not record a point in Belarus, but reports are that he played well during the tournament. Simeonlli had 5 shots on goal and spent two minutes in the penalty box. He was even for the tournament.

Like I mentioned in the opening, this is the second straight gold for the United States in this tournament. As Chris Dilks talks about in his game recap, it's hard to argue with the success of the NTDP in producing results at the international level. The United States has metaled in every tournament since 2004 and has grabbed four gold medals in the past six seasons including going back to back twice. In the past 10 seasons, the United States has won 5 golds, two silvers, and a bronze.

Photo Credit: Mark Bialek for