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USA men fall to Slovenia in OT to start their 2018 Olympic hockey tournament

A 2-0 lead in the third turned into a shocking 3-2 overtime loss for the men.

Ice Hockey - Winter Olympics Day 5 - United States v Slovenia Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Despite leading 2-0 coming into the third period, Team USA was not able to hold on to the lead in their first 2018 Winter Olympics tournament game as Slovenia was able to mount a comeback to win 3-2 in overtime. Jan Mursak got the tying goal for Slovenia with 1:37 left to play in the third period.

The game started well for the United States as veteran Brian O’Neill got the Americans up 1-0 late in the first period with 2:16 to go in the frame. With the Slovenia defense scrambled in their own zone, O’Neill got between the opposing defenders to pot Team USA’s first goal of the tournament. The Americans outshot Slovenia 11-3 in the first period, and that number would only grow throughout the game.

In the second period, 20-year-old Jordan Greenway doubled the Americans’ lead over Slovenia with a goal midway through the period. Greenway was able to pick up a rebound in close before goaltender Gasper Kroselj could slide over to stop the puck. O’Neill got his second point of the day with an assist on Greenway’s even-strength tally, but that was the last time the United States would get on the scoreboard.

Even though the Americans came into the third period with the 2-0 lead, the team was sloppy as they allowed Slovenia to put 11 shots on goal. Their opponents took advantage of the Americans’ sloppiness as Jan Urbas got Slovenia on the board with 15 minutes left to play in the frame.

Everything eventually collapsed on Team USA when Mursak scored the tying tally with less than two minutes to play with the goaltender pulled for Slovenia.

In the five-minute, 3-on-3 overtime, Team USA put up no shots on goal before Mursak again tallied the game winner just 38 seconds into the frame for the 3-2 victory.

Mursak had two points for Slovenia in the stunning victory over the United States.

Thanks to the 3-2 Russian loss in regulation, however, Team USA is now third in Group B with one point due to advancing to overtime. The Americans will have a chance at redemption Thursday evening against Slovakia as round-robin play continues.

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