Smith shines in world championship; helps USA to bronze


Smith

May 20, 2013

MADISON, Wis. -- When Team USA watched Milwaukee-born Alex Galchenyuk score his second goal of the shootout against Finland on Sunday in Sweden, they celebrated a medal-winning performance at an International Ice Hockey Federation world championship for just the third time since 1962.

Madison, Wis., native and former Wisconsin student-athlete Craig Smith was one of the big reasons for the team's success. In addition to opening the scoring in the bronze medal game against Finland, he collected an assist on the Americans' second goal in the 3-2 shootout victory. He also finished the tournament with four goals and 14 points to rank third among all players in the tournament in scoring.

Smith has been stellar in three consecutive world championship appearances. He played 44 games for the NHL's Nashville Predators this past lockout-shortened season and tallied four goals and 12 points. He matched those numbers and more in 10 games of world championship play in 2013.

Smith posted two assists in four games of the 2012 world championship, which he joined following Nashville's exit from the NHL playoffs. In 2011 for his world championship debut, Smith scored three goals and six points in seven games to rank second on Team USA.

In 2013, Smith's performance was highlighted by his two-point game in the bronze medal contest, a five-assist game in an 8-3 victory over Russia in the quarterfinals and a hat trick in pool play in a 4-1 victory over Finland. The victory over Russia marked the most goals allowed and the largest margin of loss for a Russian team in world championship history.

Joining Smith, and also winning a bronze medal with Team USA, was former Badger defenseman and Hobey Baker Award finalist Jamie McBain. In his first world championship appearance, the All-American posted two assists in 10 games played.

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