OTTAWA - It was a repeat performance for the Russians at this year's world junior hockey championship as they won their second consecutive bronze medal with a 5-2 win over Slovakia on Monday.
Nikita Filatov led the way with two goals while Pavel Chernov, Maxim Goncharov and Dmitri Kugryshev also scored for Russia. Vadim Zhelobnyuk stopped 23 shots for his fifth win of the tournament.
Martin Stajnoch and Tomas Tatar scored for Slovakia as Jaroslav Janus faced 24 shots. Despite a 4-3 record Janus was one of the tournament's stars having allowed 21 goals on 190 shots. Only Latvia faced more shots with 232.
Slovakia will undoubtedly see this year's fourth-place finish as a vast improvement on last year's seventh-place result. Slovakia's best finish was in 1999 when they won bronze.
Russia opened the scoring at the four-minute mark of the first as Chernov beat Janus shortside.
Russia made it 2-0 early in the second as Evgeni Dadonov caught Goncharov coming out of the penalty box. Goncharov broke in all alone and beat Janus with a great shot off his backhand.
Despite a number of good chances the Slovaks were struggling to find ways to beat Zhelobnyuk. Stajnoch finally found a way midway through the period as Tomas Tatar sent him a great cross-ice pass to the point where he fired a bullet that Zhelobnyuk never even saw until it was behind him. The announced crowd of 18,763 was definitely showing favouritism for Slovakia as they erupted after the goal.
With just over 30 seconds remaining Russia was able to regain its two goal lead as Filatov scored on his own rebound.
Filatov scored his second of the game and eighth of the tournament midway through the third beating Janus glove side.
Tatar made it 4-2 banging in a shot from the back boards and then Kugryshev scored into an empty net with less than two minutes remaining.
The two teams met earlier in the tournament when the Russians defeated Slovakia 8-1.