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Michalek Wins Bronze at Worlds

by Michelle Crechiolo / Pittsburgh Penguins
Penguins defenseman Zbynek Michalek and the Czech Republic captured a bronze medal at the 2011 IIHF World Championships on Sunday with their 7-4 victory over Russia in Bratislava, Slovakia.

This is the second-straight year the Czech Republic has medaled in the tournament, as they defeated Russia in dramatic fashion in last year's title game. The Czech Republic won that contest by a score of 2-1 to earn their first gold medal in more than five years and end a 27-game Russian winning streak.

The game also marked the second time the Czech Republic and Russia faced off in the tournament, as the Czechs topped Russia, 3-2, on May 8 in qualifying-round action.

Michalek skated for 23:06 minutes in Sunday's win and recorded one shot on goal. He finished the tournament with one assist through six games, leading the Czech Republic in minutes played for two of those contests.

This is the second time in his four tournament appearances that Michalek has earned a medal with his national team, as the 28-year-old blueliner scored three goals in nine games en route to earning a silver medal with the Czech Republic in 2006.


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