When Ryan Donato received the puck midway through the first period Thursday night, he was thinking about a recent conversation with his father, Ted.
“He told me, ‘Don’t shoot too high, shoot low,'” Donato recalled.
That’s exactly what the 21-year-old center did in USA’s crucial preliminary round game against Slovakia on Thursday.
With 12:51 to play in the opening period and the score tied at zero, Troy Terry sent a backward pass to Donato, who corralled the puck, skated forward and sent a wrist shot past Slovakia goalie Jan Laco to give Team USA the lead.
“When I got the puck on the first (goal), I was thinking low blocker,” Donato said to reporters after the game, “and it went in. It was a good feeling.”