Whitefish native Jake Sanderson's assist with 1:16 left in the third period lifted the U.S. National Junior Team to the 2021 World Junior Championships finale on Monday in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
Sanderson found teammate Alex Turcotte who then connected with Arthur Kaliyev who scored to give Team USA the 4-3 victory over Finland in the semifinal round.
"An Arty-Party late in the 3rd! It's 4-3!" @Arthur_Kaliyev | @usahockey | #WorldJuniors pic.twitter.com/WcizaSeQNb
— NHL Network (@NHLNetwork) January 5, 2021
Sanderson, a defenseman and freshman at the University of North Dakota, saw 16 minutes, 41 seconds of ice time in Monday's contest. The win improved Team USA to 5-0-0-1 at the World Junior Championships. Sanderson, who made the 25-man roster in mid-December, has appeared in all six games for Team USA, with Monday's assist being his second of the tournament.
Sanderson continues to be on a historic trajectory for the state of Montana in the sport of hockey. The 18-year-old was drafted by the Ottawa Senators with the No. 5 pick in the NHL Draft back in October.
The United States will take on Canada in the gold medal game on Tuesday at 7:30 p.m.