World Junior Championship pocket book: Canada, Russia set to satisfy in gold medal recreation

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After trouncing Finland, Canada has punched its ticket to the gold medal recreation, the place they’ll meet a Russian workforce that defeated Sweden right away traditional. In the meantime, the relegation collection will come all the way down to a do-or-die recreation.Justus Annunen and Dylan Cozens|Peter KovalevTASS through Getty ImagesHot begin leads Canada to gold medal gameA yr in the past, Finland put an finish to Canada’s pursuit of gold. However one yr later, Canada’s semifinal victory was by no means doubtful as three targets earlier than the five-minute mark put the Canadians in whole management of the outing nearly from the second the puck was dropped.
In what was arguably Canada’s finest five-minute stretch of all the event, Connor McMichael struck lower than two minutes into the opening interval when he fired a wrist shot previous Justus Annunen to get Canada on the board early. Lower than 90 seconds later, Alexis Lafreniere took a feed from Nolan Foote at full pace and backhanded the puck previous Annunen to double the lead. Jamie Drysdale then added to the offensive bonanza when he stepped up and fired house his first of the event 50 seconds after Lafreniere’s marker. Earlier than the body was out, Ty Dellandrea added one to make it Four-Zero for the Canadians.
The story turned to the large effort of Canadian netminder Joel Hofer with Canada in full management. After stopping 16 pictures within the first interval – lots of them in succession after Finland started to push again – Hofer turned apart all 9 within the second and one other 10 Finnish pictures within the third. The competition was already out of attain, however Lafreniere scored as soon as extra on the person benefit to place a bow on the semifinal affair.
With the win, Canada will look to win gold on European ice for the primary time since 2008 – coincidentally, a event that was additionally held within the Czech Republic. Standing of their approach would be the similar Russian workforce that beat Canada 6-Zero in spherical robin play, and the 2 U-20 groups have loads of historical past within the gold medal recreation. Since first squaring off for gold in 1995, Canada and Russia have performed for high spot 9 occasions, with Canada proudly owning a 5-Four file. The 2 groups final met for gold in 2015, when Canada defeat Russia 5-Four in Toronto.
Russia going for gold after immediate classicIn one of the memorable video games lately on the World Junior Championship, Russia will play for gold after an unbelievable backwards and forwards affair resulted in a 5-Four extra time victory over Sweden.
The primary interval was full mayhem, kicked off by a Swedish purpose lower than 20 seconds following the opening faceoff. After David Gustafsson gained it cleanly to defenseman Rasmus Sandin, the Swedish blueliner beat Russian netminder Yaroslav Askarov over the glove to open the scoring earlier than followers may even settle into their seats. Regardless of the early deficit, Russia’s Ivan Morozov wasted no time levelling the rating, beating Sweden’s Hugo Alnefelt five-hole on the ability play.
It was at that time that issues appeared as if they have been about to utterly unravel for the Swedes. Nils Hoglander, one of many event’s high gamers and its main scorer, was ejected for elbowing Grigori Denisenko within the head, giving Russia a five-minute benefit. Alexander Khovanov scored on the ability play to make it 2-1 Russia, just for Yegor Sokolov so as to add to the lead later within the interval when he made it Three-1.
Earlier than the body was by, although, Samuel Fagemo scored on the ability play to deliver Sweden inside one and assist them settle issues heading into first intermission. That was a worthwhile tally, too, because it allowed Sweden to attract degree halfway by the second when Sandin scored his second of the night time. Setting the desk for that purpose, too, was the play of Alnefelt, who was spectacular within the second half of the sport and made a number of highlight-reel saves to maintain Sweden within the battle.
As for Alnefelt’s counterpart, 17-year-old phenom Yaroslav Askarov struggled. After permitting his fourth purpose towards, a Nils Lundkvist energy play purpose, he was pulled in favor of Amir Miftakhov. And the goaltending change paid dividends, as Miftakhov slammed the door shut the remainder of the way in which. That allowed Russia to place strain on the Swedes and ultimately knot the sport up at 4 when Yegor Sokolov scored with roughly 11 minutes remaining.
With regulation settling nothing, the competition required extra time, and after nice alternatives at each ends, Russia punched their ticket to the gold medal recreation when Ivan Morozov beat Alnefelt from a troublesome angle. It marks the primary time since 2016 that Russia will play gold, whereas yet one more Swedish workforce that powered its approach by the spherical robin will end with not more than bronze.
Kazakhstan stays alive, forces closing relegation gameAfter being shut out within the first of the three-game relegation collection, Kazakhstan has pressured a do-or-die contest with a Four-1 win over Germany.
An sickness took potential high 10 decide Tim Stutzle out of the German lineup, and whereas they nonetheless managed to outshoot Kazakhstan 44-22, a purpose lower than 5 minutes in by Stanislav Alexandrov gave Kazakhstan its second lead of the event and set the tone for the affair. Oleg Boiko scored the lone purpose within the second interval, whereas goaltender Vladislav Nurek stopped all 24 pictures he confronted by 40 minutes. Within the third, Alexandrov scored his second and Denis Chaporov added Kazakhstan’s fourth, whereas Luis Schinko scored Germany’s lone purpose within the dying minutes.
The 2 groups will sq. off for survival previous to the bronze medal recreation in Ostrava Sunday. The loser will likely be demoted to Division IA in 2021.
Draft WatchWith Bowen Byram out with an sickness, defenseman Jamie Drysdale stepped up and was one among Canada’s finest defensemen. He led Canada in ice time by a lot of the recreation and was rewarded together with his first purpose of the event. Regardless of being the youngest defender on the workforce, does Drysdale get an elevated function within the closing?
Three Stars
Rasmus Sandin, Sweden (2G, 2A, 4P) – Did the whole lot in his energy to contribute for Sweden, nevertheless it simply wasn’t sufficient.
Alexis Lafreniere, Canada (2G, 0A, 2P) – Could have performed his approach onto the event all-star workforce regardless of lacking two video games.
Stanislav Alexandrov, Kazakhstan (2G, 0A, 2P) – Each targets took the momentum away from Germany. Stored Kazakhstan alive.
Sunday – Jan. 5, 2019Germany vs. Kazakhstan, Recreation Three, 5 a.m. ETSweden vs. Finland, 9 a.m. ETRussia vs. Canada, 1 p.m. ET
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Tags: world junior championshipConnect: Concerning the AuthorSteven EllisSteven Ellis is a Digital Content material Producer for The Hockey Information. He spends his free time listening to music you would not like and watches obnoxiously-long motor races.

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