Sun, May 07, 2006 - Page 22 News List

US starts hockey championship with win over Norway

AP , RIGA, LATVIA

Dustin Brown scored three power-play goals on Friday, leading the US past Norway 3-1 in the opening game of the World Ice Hockey Championship.

"This is my first hat trick at this level," Brown said. "When I was younger -- 15, 16 years old -- I used to do it over in Europe."

Tommy Jakobsen scored the only goal for Norway, a newcomer in hockey's elite pool, midway through the first period with the Americans playing short-handed.

Brown, a 21-year-old forward with the Los Angeles Kings, tied the game at 1:21 in the second session.

He gave the Americans the lead for the first time at 5:42 in the third period, beating Norway goalie Pal Grotnes with a shot from the right circle. The puck went between Grotnes' pads and trickled over the goal line.

Ten minutes later, Brown fired a wrist shot past Grotns to complete the scoring. On the last two goals, Mats Trygg was serving penalties for Norway.

"We struggled in the first [period], got together in the second and played really strong in the third," Brown said. "It was a good win."

The Americans, who outshot Norway 31-21, have only been in Europe for five days, playing one exhibition game.

"It's tough to come and play, not only get to know the players you're playing with," Brown said. "Everyone is coming in playing different systems."

Some penalties were questionable.

"There were some calls out there that wouldn't be called with the new NHL rules," Brown said. "North American teams seem to have a harder time to adjust to it. But it's something that we have to deal with and address. You kind of prepare yourself for it."

The bigger rink caused no problems for Brown.

"I have played on it before," he said. "You have a lot more room to do stuff out there, lot more offense. NHL rinks are small compared to this one. You have all the time in the world."

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