EDMONTON (Agencies): Boston College’s Spencer Knight made 27 saves and the United States opened the first and second periods with two-goal bursts to beat Sweden 4-0 on Thursday night and win Group B in the world junior hockey championship.
The United States will face Slovakia – the fourth-place finisher in Group A – in the quarterfinals Saturday.
After opening with a 5-3 loss to Russia, the United States has reeled off a team-record three straight shutouts, beating Austria 11-0 and the Czech Republic 7-0 to set up the showdown with Sweden for the top spot in the group.
Boston College’s Drew Helleson and Boston University’s Trevor Zegras scored in the first four minutes, and Minnesota’s Ryan Johnson and Wisconsin’s Alex Turcotte connected in quick succession early in the second.
Sweden lost in regulation in the preliminary round for the first time since falling 2-0 to Canada in 2006.
In the other quarterfinals, defending champion Canada will play the Czech Republic, Sweden will face Finland, and Russia will play Germany.
Earlier, Dylan Cozens scored twice, Devon Levi made 18 saves and Canada beat Finland 4-1 to win Group A.
Dylan Holloway and Peyton Krebs also scored to help Canada complete pool play 4-0. Brad Lambert scored for Finland.
In the first game of the day, the Czech Republic took the final Group B slot in the quarterfinals, routing Austria 7-0. Austria finished 0-4, and is 0-21 in the event.
Martin Lang scored twice for Finland. Simon Kubicek, Filip Prikryl, Pavel Novak, David Juricek and Jan Mysak added goals and Nick Malik made 15 saves.