Team USA got the start they wanted against Canada during their World Cup of Hockey matchup on Tuesday, but things quickly went south.

Just over four minutes in, the Americans took a one-goal lead, as the puck deflected off of Ryan McDonagh and past Carey Price.  Then, less than two minutes later, they were losing.

Matt Duchene led Canada’s offensive attack, scoring two first period goals, despite playing only 2:45 in the frame.  On the first goal, he out-muscled the much bigger Dustin Byfuglien to put a puck off the boards into the net. On the second, he was left all alone and dangled Jonathan Quick with a great move, then buried the biscuit.

US defenseman Erik Johnson was on the ice for both of his Colorado Avalanche teammate’s goals.  On the second, he couldn’t recover a bad Max Pacioretty turnover, which allowed Duchene to break in.  Johnson finished the game minus-one, with a two-minute penalty for delay of game, three shots and one hit.

Team USA made a spirited comeback attempt in the third, even scoring one to cut the deficit to 4-2; but alas, it was not meant to be. They hit four posts in the frame, and lost the contest by that same count.

A team constructed out of pure grit, the Americans did not show very much fight in the contest.  With the loss, they are eliminated from moving on to the semi-finals. Canada on the other hand, guarantees themselves a spot in the elimination round.

Earlier in the day, Sweden shut out Finland 2-0. Though he did not put up any points, Gabriel Landeskog had an active night, registering two penalty minutes, three shots, two hits and one blocked shot, registering a plus-one rating. Typically a winger, he also won three of the four faceoffs he took. Carl Soderberg played sparingly, blocking one shot.

On Monday, the high-flying North American team was finally brought back to Earth, falling to Russia by a 4-3 score. Nathan MacKinnon had yet another strong game in the losing effort, registering an assist, a plus-one rating and winning 83 percent of his faceoffs.  He also got a two-minute penalty for rough as a result of a small dust up with Andrei Markov.

The preliminary round will wrap up with a slate of contests on Wednesday and Thursday.  Team North America will face Sweden and Team Europe will play Canada on Wednesday.  Thursday will see Team USA play the Czech Republic and Finland will play Russia.