Four Carolina Hurricanes represented their countries in Saturday’s first games of the Preliminary round at the International Ice Hockey Federation
’s World Championships.
Sami Kapanen registered a three-point (1g, 2a) game as his native Finland downed Austria 5-1 at Arena Numberg in Nuremberg, Germany. Kapanen scored the game’s first goal on the power play just 5:12 into the first period. The Hurricanes winger went on to register assists on Juha Ylonen’s two third period goals.
Finland registered a whopping 54 shots on goal in Game 1. Austria goaltender Reinhard Divis made 49 saves in the losing effort.
Finland plays Japan on Monday in their second preliminary round game. 16 teams play in the World Championships’ Preliminary round and are divided into four groups of four teams. Following three round robin group games the teams move onto the Qualification and Relegation rounds.
In Group C play the United States defeated Ukraine 6-3. Hurricanes defenseman David Tanabe earned assists on David Legwand and Landon Wilson's goals.
Tanabe and the United States face off against Latvia on Monday.
The Latvian team features Hurricanes goaltender Arturs Irbe and defenseman Sandis Ozolinsh. Latvia faced Sweden on Saturday and fell 5-2. Irbe made 29 saves in the losing effort. Ozolinsh did not score and recorded no penalty minutes in the game.
Edmonton Oilers goaltender Tommy Salo back-stopped Sweden making 25 saves in the game.