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by Staff Writer / Pittsburgh Penguins


Sidney Crosby and Team Canada open single-elimination quarterfinal play at the World Championships against Slovakia on Wednesday.

Crosby, the Penguins’ 18-year-old superstar, increased his tournament-leading point total to 12 with Monday’s 4-2 triumph over Finland. He how has six goals and six assists in six games for Team Canada.

The win over Finland was key for Canada, which closed qualifying round play in first place in Group E with eight points. Canada leapfrogged past second-place Finland, which has seven points in the group.

Slovakia advanced to the quarterfinals with Tuesday’s 8-0 rout of Ukraine. Penguins forward Tomas Surovy did not record a point in the game. He has four points (2+2) in six games for Slovakia.

The winner of Wednesday’s game between Canada and Slovakia will meet the winner of Wednesday’s other matchup: Team USA and Sweden.

Russia vs. Czech Republic                                                                                                    

Evgeni Malkin led Russia to the top of the Group F standings. Now, he hopes to lead his team to a gold medal.          


Malkin, the 2004 second-overall pick, had one assist in Monday’s 3-3 tie with Sweden, which assured Russia the top spot in Group F. Malkin, the Penguins’ 19-year-old super prospect, now has a team-best eight points (3+5) in six games.                                                                  

The winner of this contest will meet the winner of the Finland-Belarus quarterfinal matchup.

Team USA vs. Sweden

Ryan Malone ensured Team USA’s Wednesday matchup with Sweden. He had a goal and an assist Tuesday in Team USA’s 3-1 triumph over the Czech Republic. The victory locked up a third-place finish in Group E for Team USA.

Malone, a Penguins forward, is second on Team USA scoring with four points (2+2) through six games in the preliminary and qualifying rounds. Penguins forward Andy Hilbert added an assist for Team USA. He now is tied for third in team scoring with three points (0+3). Penguins defenseman Brooks Orpik

With the win, Team USA finished third in Group E. Team USA advances to the quarterfinals against Sweden, while the Czech Republic will meet Russia and Penguins super prospect Evgeni Malkin.

Finland vs. Belarus

Forward Jani Rita, who played in 30 games with the Penguins this year, and Finland take on Belarus in Thursday’s other quarterfinal.

Rita has one goal in give games for the Finns, who finished second in Group E with seven points – one less than Canada and one more than Team USA.


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