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World Junior Championship pocket book: Canada takes gold in thriller over Russia

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Canada’s comeback capped by late gold medal-winning goalIn one of many tightest gold medal video games in current historical past, Canada erased a two-goal Russian lead within the third interval and captured gold on the energy of a late-game winner by Akil Thomas.
The primary interval was stuffed with motion, with Russia outshooting Canada 10-7, however the true story was Canada’s parade to the penalty field. 4 instances within the first body Canada was whistled for infractions, however the penalty kill and goaltender Joel Hofer slammed the door shut. However after taking their fifth penalty of the outing – and handing Russia their fifth alternative on the person benefit – Canada lastly cracked. With Barrett Hayton within the field for a holding the stick penalty within the second interval, Nikita Alexandrov tipped Yegor Zamula’s shot previous Hofer to offer Russia the 1-Zero lead.
Not lengthy after Russia’s game-opening purpose, nonetheless, Canada was in a position to strike again. On a two-man benefit halfway by means of the second interval, Dylan Cozens fired a free puck previous a sprawling Amir Miftakhov to even the rating. That purpose sparked Canada, who began to push, however the momentum that was constructing following Cozens’ purpose was snuffed out when Russia’s Grigori Denisenko scored on a scramble in entrance, pushing the puck below Joel Hofer’s pad to make it 2-1 heading into the ultimate interval of the match. That set the stage for a wild third interval.
After almost 9 quiet minutes within the closing body, Maxim Sorkin ripped house a wrister that put Russia forward Three-1, however the two-goal lead was brief lived. Lower than one minute later, a Calen Addison shot ricocheted off of Connor McMichael’s leg and previous Miftakhov, bringing Canada again inside one and turning the tide of their favor. Shortly after McMichael’s tally, Russia’s Dmitri Voronkov was whistled for cross-checking, and a mere 10 seconds into the facility play, Canadian captain Hayton, who was a game-time resolution with an arm damage sustained in opposition to Finland on Saturday, whistled a wrist shot previous Miftakhov to tie the sport at three. After which Akil Thomas stepped up.
With that next-goal-wins feeling floating within the air, Thomas, who had been quiet all through the match, scored the most important purpose of his profession. Slipping previous a Russian defender and reaching for a free puck, Thomas was in a position to make a last-second deke and shovel the puck previous Miftakhov to offer Canada a Four-Three lead with 4 minutes remaining. Regardless of some late penalty hassle, Canada didn’t relinquish that lead and held on to seize 2020 World Junior Championship gold.
With the win, Canada grabbed its third gold medal since 2015, together with its second in opposition to Russia. Canada now has a 6-Four document in opposition to Russia within the championship recreation and 18 gold medals in match historical past – probably the most of any nation.
Sweden salvages match with bronzeIt wasn’t the medal they needed, however a Three-2 victory over rival Finland allowed Sweden to skate away from the 2020 World Junior Championship with bronze medals round their necks.
The rostrum placement didn’t come straightforward for the Swedes, nonetheless, because the hard-fought win started with Finland taking a 2-1 lead into the primary intermission. The primary interval Finnish lead got here on the energy of Patrik Puistola’s tip-in effort simply shy of the halfway mark of the opening interval and Matias Maccelli capitalizing on Nils Hoglander’s terrible turnover late within the body, the 2 objectives damaged up by Rasmus Sandin getting Sweden on the board with the person benefit.
Luckily for the Tre Kronor, they have been in a position to bounce again and take the lead within the second. Samuel Fagemo scored his fifth of the match on the midway level, stuffing house a rebound after Annunen stopped Hoglander’s preliminary shot. Three minutes later, Linus Oberg scored a blooper, capturing the puck from the nook and someway squeaking it below Annunen’s proper leg to place Sweden forward Three-2. From there, Hugo Alnefet was the distinction for Sweden, stopping 32 pictures – together with 11 within the third interval – to stop Finland from drawing stage.
The bronze medal is Sweden’s first third-place end since 2010 and fifth medal over the previous decade. As for the defending champion Finns, it’s one other all-or-nothing end. The Finns have received three golds previously seven World Junior Championships, however have completed with no medal within the different 4 occasions, together with this yr’s match.
Kazakhstan relegated to Division IAGermany will stay within the prime World Junior Championship due to a 6-Zero victory over Kazakhstan in Recreation Three of the relegation collection.
It was a major about-face for the Germans, who fell Four-1 to Kazakhstan Saturday, which pressured the do-or-die recreation. However with their match life on the road, Germany got here to play. Dominik Bokk led the way in which with two objectives, with Eric Mik, Lukas Reichel, Niklas Heinzinger and Tim Fleischer every lighting the lamp. Hendrik Hane stopped all 27 pictures he confronted for his second shutout of the relegation spherical.
The win was enormous for Germany, who may have an opportunity to compete in opposition to Switzerland and Slovakia in Group A subsequent yr. Germany can deliver again seven gamers for 2020, together with prime abilities Tim Stutzle, J.J. Peterka and Reichel. Austria will take Kazakhstan’s place in Group B subsequent season.
Event All-Star TeamForward: Barrett Hayton (CAN), Alexis Lafreniere (CAN), Samuel Fagemo (SWE)Protection: Rasmus Sandin (SWE), Alexander Romanov (RUS)Goaltender: Joel Hofer (CAN)
Event AwardsBest Goalkeeper: Joel Hofer (CAN)Finest Defenseman: Rasmus Sandin (SWE)Finest Ahead: Alexis Lafreniere (CAN)
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Tags: world junior championshipConnect: In regards to 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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