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Filatov, Klopov lead Russia to 5-2 win at WJC

NHL.com @NHL

OTTAWA - Nikita Filatov and Dmitri Klopov each scored twice as Russia stayed undefeated with a 5-2 win over Finland at the world junior hockey championship Sunday.

Russia (2-0-0) now has six points in the three point scoring system. Finland, meanwhile, is 0-2-0 following two regulation losses in Group B play.

Klopov also had an assist while linemate Evgeni Dadonov had a goal and an two assists for Russia. The third member of the trio, Nikita Klyukin, had three assists. Danila Alistratov made 12 saves for the win.

Jani Lajunen and Joonas Nattinen scored for Finland, who were outshot 28-14. Harri Sateri did his best in the Finland goal to keep his team in the game, but it was Nattinen who picked up player-of-the-game honours for Finland.

Filatov was the Russian player of the game.

The score could have been much worse had Russia had a touch more accuracy. Klopov scored with less than two minutes remaining for the only goal of the third period but the Russians hit two crossbars that could have put the game out of reach sooner than it was.

The Finns were able to skate with the Russians through the first half of the game, despite what the stats were saying. They were hitting hard and moving the puck but were very tentative and seemed to be offering too much respect to the Russians.

In the second half of the second period though, the Russians took control and were dominating.

Lajunen opened the scoring and gave Finland a 1-0 lead at 5:10 of the opening period, but Russia responded with three goals before the end of the frame for a 3-1 lead.

Filatov scored the first of his two goals to tie the game at 7:56 and just 38 seconds later Dadonov gave the Russians their first lead of the game. Klopov put the Russians ahead 3-1 at 11:29.

Nattinen scored a power-play goal at 3:55 of the second period, cutting the lead to 3-2, but that was one of just three shots Finland had in the second period following a four-shot performance in the first.

Six minutes after that goal Filatov put Russia up 4-2 as he fired a slapshot past Sateri from the slot.

The Russian will face Slovakia on Tuesday afternoon while Finland will play Latvia on Tuesday night.

Both teams will close out the preliminary round of the tournament with games Wednesday.

The tournament takes a break on New Year's Day and will open the playoff and relegation rounds on Thursday.

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