OTTAWA – The United States coasted into the world junior hockey championship playoffs with a 12-0 rout of Kazakhstan on Tuesday.
The U.S. will play Canada in a match of 3-0-0 teams Wednesday with top spot in Group A on the line.
Kazakhstan (0-3-0) will head to the relegation round after suffering yet another rout. Canada trounced Kazakhstan 15-0 on Sunday.
Aaron Palushaj lead the Americans with two goals and two assists. Colin Wilson also had two goals, while James van Riemsdyk and Ian Cole each had a goal and two assists. Matt Rust, Mitch Wahl, Drayson Bowman, Mike Hoeffel, Jimmy Hayes and Danny Kristo had the other U.S. goals. Kevin Shattenkirk added three assists.
American goaltender Thomas McCollum needed to make just 10 saves to earn the shutout.
A beleaguered Andrei Yankov made 49 saves on 61 shots for Kazakhstan.