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Gazzola leads Canada East over Czechs 5-0 in World Junior A Challenge

NHL.com @NHL

LANGLEY, B.C. - Randy Gazzola scored a hat trick to lead Canada East over the Czech Republic 5-0 on Monday in the opening game of the World Junior A Challenge.

Justin Danforth and Tyson Spink also scored for Canada East, which includes players drawn from Ontario, Quebec and Atlantic Canada. Goalie Adrian Ignagni stopped 16 shots for the shutout.

It was the first hat trick by a defenceman in tournament history.

Gazzola opened the scoring at 14:24 of the first and Spink made it 2-0 while on the power play two minutes later.

Danforth scored in the second period and Gazzola added two more in the third, with his second at 10:09 coming with the man advantage.

Marek Langhamer finished with 27 saves for the Czech Republic, which made its tournament debut.

In the late game Monday, Oscar Dansk made 44 saves as Sweden outlasted defending champions the United States 1-0.

Ludvig Nilsson scored for Sweden with six seconds left in regulation.

Zane Gothberg made 23 saves for the Americans.

The annual international tournament showcases Canada's top Junior A Tier 2 players, as well as players from other countries.

The teams are made up of players born between 1992 and 1995.

The U.S. has won the tournament the last three years.

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