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CANADA 6 - CZECH REPUBLIC 3
Jets goaltender Ondrej Pavelec earned Player of the Game honours with a 32-save performance Monday night, but it wasn’t enough to lead to host team to
Six different goal-scorers – Jordan Eberle (Edmonton Oilers), Taylor Hall (Edmonton Oilers), Sean Couturier (Philadelphia Flyers), Tyler Seguin (Dallas Stars), Sidney Crosby (Pittsburgh Penguins) and Tyler Toffoli (EN, Los Angeles Kings) – contributed offensively, while Mike Smith made 22 saves as Canada remains undefeated at the 2015 IIHF World Hockey Championship in Prague, Czech Republic.
Martin Erat, Martin Zatovic and Vladimir Sobotka scored for the Czechs.
Canada took a 1-0 lead at 4:18 as a fortuitous bounce behind the net allowed Eberle to wrap the puck and stuff it in short side on Pavelec.
Hall put the red and white up by two with under a minute to play in the first period, roofing a one-time shot from the bottom of the circle after receiving a beautiful cross from Jake Muzzin (Los Angeles Kings). Hall has four goals in his last two games and is now Canada’s outright leader in that category.
Less than a half-minute later, Erat cut the deficit to one with a blocker-side deflection on Mike Smith, igniting the sold-out crowd at O2 Arena. Zatovic then brought the game back on level terms – however briefly – at 15:45 of the second, feathering a sharp-angle shot through traffic,
skirting the clutch of the goaltender.
It was all Canada from that point forward.
Fighting through the check of Vladimir Sobotka, Couturier whipped a shot through a screen with 2:21 to play in the period, putting Canada up 3-2 at the second intermission.
Pavelec stood tall to preserve the one-goal deficit, robbing Claude Giroux (Philadelphia Flyers) in tight with an exceptional sliding effort in the final seconds of the middle frame, but Canada kept coming; back-to-back power-play goals all but ended it soon after. Wheeling into the slot and rifling a shot far side, Seguin extended the lead to 4-2 before Crosby added the insurance with 9:53 to play.
Sobotka added one late, but Toffoli scored into the empty net 55 seconds later to seal a 6-3 final.Next up:
Canada vs. Sweden - Wednesday, May 6 at 1:15pm CT.
--USA 4 - RUSSIA 2
Jets prospect Connor Hellebuyck was given the night off Monday as the United States knocked off the defending champions 4-2 in Ostrava, Czech Republic.
Mark Arcobello’s goal at 11:52 of the third period stood as the game-winner, while Trevor Lewis (Los Angeles Kings), Torey Krug (Boston Bruins) and Brock Nelson (EN, New York Islanders) added the others in a critical Group B matchup, giving the Americans a three-point cushion atop the
Anton Belov and Sergei Plotnikov tallied for the Russians, while veteran goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky (Columbus Blues Jackets) stopped 15 of 19 in a losing effort.
In his first start of the tournament, Jack Campbell (AHL's Texas Stars) made 16 saves on the 18 shots he faced.
Hellebuyck is one of the top goaltenders in the tournament, posting 1.00 goals-against average and a .962 save percentage in two appearances thus far. READ: Full story courtesy IIHF.comNext up:
USA vs. Belarus - Thursday, May 7 at 1:15pm CT