The US Men's National Team currently has a roster of 40 players, which will be cut down to a final 23 before next summer's World Championship in Manchester, England. The 40-man roster has been broken down into two 20-man teams, which traveled to Annapolis this afternoon to battle some current college teams.
With scores unofficial, if kept at all, nearly everyone on the sidelines playing and number-switching by some teams, the observations on fall are often limited, at best.
With only about two minutes to go Navy stormed back against Virginia in the fourth quarter eliminating a two-goal deficit to tie it at 3-3. Virginia notched the winner in the last minute.
Virginia appeared to come out with the win over USA in the final game. The Cavs received some nice goaltending play from Adam Ghitelman and Rob Fortunato, particularly towards the end when the US started to pour it on.
In 2008, Garrett Ince and Brian McDermott handled the faceoff duties for UVA. Last year grad student Chad Gaudet took over the role. With Gaudet gone, McDermott, Ince and sophomore Ryan Benincasa are left to fill the void. In the final against USA, all three had pretty good success. The trio didn't necessarily dominate the faceoff circle, their success was in their ability to severely limit faceoff guru Alex Smith's success and fastbreak potential. This is one of the critical areas that Team USA needed to improve on from the 2006 World Games that saw Canada's Geoff Snider dominate in the Gold Medal game.
All-in-all, all of the games were competitive, as all teams worked out the kinks, tried out different combinations and gained needed experience. As witnessed in the final game, the refs also used the time to work off the rust.