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Canada advances, USA eliminated in Worlds quarterfinals

by Jourdon LaBarber @jourdonlabarber / Sabres.com

 

Well, so much for a matchup between Jack Eichel and Ryan O'Reilly. While O'Reilly and Canada advanced to the semifinal round with a victory over Germany on Thursday, Eichel and Team USA were eliminated with a loss to Finland. 

That leaves Canada, Finland, Russia and Sweden as the final four teams at the IIHF World Championship. Canada, the top remaining seed, will play Russia on Saturday 9:15 a.m. Finland and Sweden will play that same day at 1:15 p.m. Both games will be played in Cologne, Germany. 

Here's a recap of today's action:

 

 

FIN 2 - USA 0

Watch: Youtube Video

Ending a string of six consecutive victories, Eichel and Team USA saw their run conclude with a 2-0 loss to Finland. 

Eichel finished his tournament with five points, all assists, and a team-high 34 shots in eight games. 

After a tournament-opening loss to Germany, Team USA won its final six games of the preliminary round to claim the top seed coming out of Group A. Finland, meanwhile, emerged from round-robin play as the fourth seed in Group B. 

Penalty trouble throughout the game, however, prevented the U.S. from ever establishing serious momentum against the Fins. Team USA took six penalties total, and it was with the extra man that Finland scored its first goal, a put-back from Mikko Rantanen early in the second period.

Finland extended its lead on Joonas Kemppainen's goal with 13:11 remaining in regulation, the product of a 2-on-1 rush. 

 

CAN 2 - GER 1

O'Reilly earned the primary assist on Mark Scheifele's power-play goal to open the scoring late in the third period and the Canadians held off a late comeback attempt in their 2-1 victory over Germany. 

The shot totals were a lopsided 50-20 in favor of the Canadians, but they didn't earn their second and final goal until Jeff Skinner scored with 1:02 remaining in the second period. Phillip Grubauer, the backup goalie for the Washington Capitals, made 48 saves in a losing effort.

The Germans did give themselves a chance when Yannic Seidenberg scored a shorthanded goal with 6:39 remaining in regulation, but O'Reilly was part of a Canadian effort that kept Germany pinned in its own zone for the majority of the game's final minutes, making it impossible to pull Grubauer off the ice. 

With his assist - a backhand feed from behind the goal line, which you can watch below - O'Reilly now has six points (4+2) in eight games.  

Tweet from @BuffaloSabres: That pass from Ryan O'Reilly �� #ROR Canada ���� leads! #IIHFWorlds pic.twitter.com/v7nbavEpSk

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