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US men's hockey advances to quarterfinals with win over Slovakia

James Wisniewski of the U.S. celebrates scoring his goal with team mate Troy Terry during the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympics on Tuesday, Feb. 20 in Gangneung, South Korea. Grigory Dukor / Reuters1 / 2
Brian O’Neill of the U.S. checked in action with Tomas Starosta of Slovakia during their game Tuesday, Feb. 20, at the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympics. Grigory Dukor / Reuters2 / 2

GANGNEUNG, South Korea—Ryan Donato scored twice to help the United States ease to a 5-1 win over Slovakia and book a spot in the men's Olympic ice hockey quarter-finals on Tuesday.

After a scoreless first period, the U.S. raced clear with three goals in the second as Donato set the ball rolling when he snapped in a loose puck past goaltender Jan Laco after Troy Terry's errant shot had come back off the boards.

Less than a minute later, Donato took a check to the head from Michal Cajkovsky, who was given a five-minute major penalty and a match suspension, after Ladislav Nagy had interfered with U.S. goaltender Ryan Zapolski to draw a two-minute penalty.

On the ensuing two-man advantage, U.S. defenseman James Wisniewski scored from the left circle with a low slap shot, his trademark talent and the main reason why coach Tony Granato had selected the ex-NHL player on the U.S. team.

The U.S. made it 3-0 when Mark Arcobello, crossing into the low slot, one-timed a feed from Terry from behind the Slovak net. Terry, a stand-out at the University of Denver, assisted on all three U.S. second period goals.

The Slovaks got on the scoreboard later in the period with a power-play goal when Jordan Greenway was in the penalty box for slashing, Peter Ceresnak's slap shot from the point deflected by a U.S. stick and past a stranded Zapolski.

Slovakia's comeback attempt ended there, however, as Garrett Roe got his first Olympic goal midway through the third period to reestablish a three-goal cushion for the Americans.

Donato got his second goal of the game, and fourth of the tournament to top all U.S. scorers, late in the third period on a power-play, firing a wrist shot that beat Laco just inside the near post to complete the scoring.

The Harvard stand-out also scored twice against Slovakia in their first meeting in pool play.

The victory set up a quarter-final showdown against undefeated Czech Republic on Wednesday, Feb. 21, while Slovakia were eliminated from the tournament.