World Hockey Championship Roundup: Scandinavian Upset

Tomorrow, the games get serious. Today, however, we still have a series of preliminary round mismatches. Or at least that’s what we were supposed to think.

Group C: USA 6 vs. Austria 1 – It was a slow start for the Americans, leading only 2-1 after 40 minutes. In the final frame, the USA finally came alive against an inferior Austrian squad with four goals to take their second win of the tournament. Dustin Brown had a goal and two assists to lead America while Marcus Peintner had the lone Austrian goal. The US will have a fight on their hands in their next game against Sweden while Austria takes on Latvia.

Group C: Latvia 3 vs. Sweden 2 (SO) – Sweden is one of hockey’s superpowers. The outcome of this game was never in question… Until the teams hit the ice. An inspired 38 save performance by Latvian goalie Edgars Masalskis led the way for Latvia to pick up their first win of the tournament. The game started as though Sweden would take the win. The Swedes led 1-0 after 20 minutes and controlled most of the play but were forced to play catch up after falling behind 2-1 in the second. The game went to a shootout which was won by Aleksandrs Nizivijs on an extra shot after he was stopped on his first attempt. Sweden will look to bounce back against the Americans while the Latvians need to beat Austria to avoid relegation.

Group C Standings
1. USA 2-0-0-0, 6 Pts.
2. Sweden 1-0-1-0, 4 Pts.
3. Latvia 0-1-0-1, 2 Pts.
4. Austria 0-0-0-2, 0 Pts.

Group D: Czech Republic 5 vs. Norway 2 – They may have started the game on the right foot, but they just coasted home. The Czechs scored three in the first but put in a nonchalant effort for the final 40 minutes. In fact, the Norwegians outscored the Czechs 2-1 in the second period. Petr Cajanek was the only check player with multiple points, notching a goal and assist. The Czechs will need to put in a full sixty minute effort if they want to beat Finland in their next game. Norway’s next game is against Denmark with the loser claiming last in group D.

Group D: Finland 5 vs. Denmark 1 – The Danes aren’t known for shocking people but they did when they opened the scoring. Sadly for Denmark, that would be the highlight of the day. Finland went on to score 5 unanswered goals to take their second win of the tournament. Antti Miettinen and Niko Kapanen both had two goals and an assist to lead the Fins to victory. Denmark will look to build on today’s strong start against Norway in their next game. Finland will battle the Czech Republic in their next game.

Group D Standings
1. Finland 2-0-0-0, 6 Pts.
2. Czech Republic 2-0-0-0, 6 Pts.
3. Norway 0-0-0-2, 0 Pts.
4. Denmark 0-0-0-2, 0 Pts.

Three Stars of the Day:
1. Antti Miettinen (Finland) – 2 goals, 1 assist
2. Edgars Masalskis (Latvia) – 38 saves
3. Dustin Brown (USA) – 1 goal, 2 assists

Tuesday’s Schedule:
Group A: Hungary vs. Belarus
Group A: Canada vs. Slovakia
Group B: Russia vs. Switzerland
Group B: France vs. Germany

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