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Going For Gold

by Staff Writer / Florida Panthers

It all comes down to this. One game. 60 minutes. And nothing but gold will do.

There are two teams left playing for gold at the World Championships in Canada as the host nation will take on Russia on Sunday for first place. That’s because Canada outlasted Sweden 5-4 in one semifinal while Russia shut out Finland 4-0 in the other semifinal.

The Scandinavian neighbors Finland and Sweden will battle for bronze on Saturday.

Ville Peltonen (Getty Images)
(Quebec City) Friday’s first semifinal wasn’t much of a contest in Quebec City as all the Russians would need to win was one goal.

That goal came in the first period as Washington’s Sergei Fedorov netted his fifth of the tournament 13:41 into the game. He was set up by his NHL teammates Alex Ovechkin and Alexander Semin.

Danis Zaripov gave Russia the 2-0 lead 3:44 into the second period as his shot beat Minnesota’s Niklas Backstrom.

Russia would put the game away with two in the third as Montreal’s Alexei Morozov scored on the power play for his fifth of the tournament with 7:45 remaining and Maxim Sushinskiy made it 4-0 with 2:04 left in the contest.

Evgeny Nabokov played well in goal, stopping 23 shots for the shut out.

For Finland, Ville Peltonen finished a -2 while getting two shots on net on 18:28 of ice time. Olli Jokinen was a -1 with four shots on net and two penalties (a holding the stick call 10:31 into the second period and a high-sticking penalty with four seconds left in the game). He finished with 19:36 TOI.

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Jay Bouwmeester (Getty Images)
(Quebec City) The offenses came to play in the second semifinal as Canada and Sweden gave the fans a game worth watching.

Ottawa’s Dany Heatley gave the Canadians the first goal of the game 5:35 in with a power play tally. The goal gave Heatley 11 in the tournament which tied the record for most in a single tournament with Eric Lindros back in 1993.

Sweden took their only lead of the game as Anton Stralman tied it for Sweden with 45 seconds left in the opening frame and Niclas Wallin scored 2:46 into the second period.

In the see-saw affair, Canada would regain the lead. They used a power play goal by Ryan Getzlaf 3:58 in to tie it and a Jamal Mayers tally 8:31 in to hold a 3-2 advantage.

Stralman would deadlock the score at three with a power play goal with 8:34 left in the second. But Canada came right back with a goal of their own as Columbus’ Rick Nash gave them the 4-3 lead just 1:03 later.

Canada’s power play would strike one last time, as Washington’s Mike Green netted the eventual game winner with just seven seconds left in the second.

Fredrik Warg would score 4:21 into the third but the Canadians held on to the one-goal lead as Columbus’ Pascal Leclaire was strong, stopping 10 shots in the final period of play.

Jay Bouwmeester was whistled for an interference penalty 6:04 into the game and finished with 19:50 of ice time for Canada while Magnus Johansson was called for a cross-checking penalty 4:30 into the contest and had a shot on net in 23:59 of ice time.

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