A team who have earned a reputation for punching above their weight, Slovenia captain Jan Mursak tied the game with under two minutes to go by tapping home a rebound and scored the victor less than a minute into sudden-death overtime.
The Americans built a 2-0 lead on goals by Brian O'Neill, a former player at Yale who now plays for Jokerit in the KHL, and Jordan Greenway. Greenway will be the first African American to compete on a U.S. Olympic hockey team. After being blanked in its first two games of the preliminary round, Griffin's accomplishment will prove to be a building block for the Korean hockey program.
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Brian Gionta, from Rochester, serves as team captain and is the only returning Olympian. But no matter who was on the ice, Team USA was outplayed for basically an entire period and Slovenia's finishing momentum carried them right to a quick overtime win.
In the 3-on-3 overtime, Mursak got free on the doorstep and scored high over American goalie Ryan Zapolski less than a minute into the extra frame.
The U.S. defenseman Matt Gilroy blocked an initial pass from Rok Ticar to Mursak.
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In Wednesday's game, the USA got goals from Brian O'Neill and Boston University's Jordan Greenway. "It's a good team, I'll give them credit".
Mursak, who now plays for Frolunda HC in the Swedish Hockey League, was selected by the Red Wings in the sixth round of the 2006 NHL Draft. "Its great, but we need to start looking forward to our next game vs. Slovakia".
After the 2012 lockout, preparing for a shot at a full season with the Wings, Mursak broke his collarbone.
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He has played for Slovenia in the World Junior Championships and the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics.