World Cup: Team North America upends Finland 4-1

Ekblad, Trocheck get the best of Barkov, Jokinen

Team North America opened the 2016 World Cup of Hockey with an impressive 4-1 win over Finland Sunday night in Toronto.

Jack Eichel opened the scoring in the first period and Johnny Gaudreau, Jonathan Drouin and Nathan MacKinnon tallied in the second to give the 23-and-under team a commanding lead. St. Louis Blues defenseman Colton Parayko chipped in two assists.

Valtteri Filppula scored with 4:07 left in the third to end Matt Murray’s shutout bid.  Murray stopped 18 of the 19 shots he faced.

Florida Panthers forward Jussi Jokinen drew the primary assist on the goal.

Speaking of Panthers, Aaron Ekblad led all skaters with 23:53 of ice time. Ekblad registered two shots on goals, dished out three hits, blocked a shot and finished the game with an even rating.

Vincent Trocheck also finished with an even rating and had one shot on goal and two hits in 14:26 TOI.

For the Finns, Aleksander Barkov logged 14:57 of ice time, blocked a shot and finished with an even rating.

Jokinen ended the night with a -1 rating in 15:51 TOI.

Team North America will get right back at it with a game against Russia at 8 p.m. on ESPN2. Russia lost to Sweden 2-1 in their opening game.

Today’s early game pits the Czech Republic (0-1) against Team Europe (1-0) in Group A action at 3:00 p.m. on the deuce.