Sweden and the Czech Republic are moving on to the semifinals of the International Ice Hockey Federation World Championship in Germany.
In Thursday's early quarterfinal action, Sweden defeated Denmark, 4-2, and the Czech Republic upended Finland in a shootout, 2-1.
At Lanxess Arena in Cologne, Jan Marek
, a former Rangers draft pick who now plays in Russia, scored the game-deciding shootout goal to give the Czech Republic a come-from-behind win. The victory wasn't clinched until Petri Kontiola
missed with a high shot on Finland's third and final attempt.
Kontiola, who played briefly for the Chicago Blackhawks
in 2007-08, staked Finland to a 1-0 lead only 55 seconds into the first period, beating Florida Panthers
goaltender Tomas Vokoun
with his third goal of the tournament.
The score remained 1-0 for more than 40 minutes until former Washington Capitals
forward Jakub Klepis
scored the equalizer on the power play for the Czech Republic at 1:12 of the third, beating Nashville Predators
goalie Pekka Rinne
Finland outshot the Czech's, 35-30.
At SAP Arena in Mannheim, Toronto Maple Leafs
goaltender Jonas Gustavsson
made 27 saves against Denmark, one of the surprise teams of the tourney, to lift Sweden to the final four. Marcus Nilson
, formerly of the Panthers and Flames, gave Sweden a 1-0 lead after 20 minutes with a power-play goal.
One-time Nashville Predator Jonas Andersson
and current Maple Leafs center Rickard Wallin
(shorthanded) increased the lead to 3-0 with second-period scores. Jesper Damgaard put Denmark on the scoreboard at 13:18, assisted by Blues prospect Lars Eller
and Islanders center Frans Nielsen
Oilers prospect Linus Omark
restored Sweden's three-goal cushion with a power-play goal at 3:17 of the third, and Denmark's Morten Madsen
responded with a man-advantage goal, assisted by Nielsen and Damgaard, at 7:35 to close the scoring.
Goalie Patrick Galbraith made 35 saves for Denmark.
Sweden and the Czech Republic will meet in the semifinals Saturday in Cologne.
In Thursday's late quarterfinal games, Russia plays Canada and Germany hosts Switzerland.