The Americans advanced to a clear 6:1 (3:0 1:1 2:0) over the Slovaks in Saturday’s round of best-of-four and will now face the semi-finals for the second time in the title clash. Riga against Russia-winners Canada (1:15 pm, live on ORF Sport+). The North American neighbors had already faced each other in the group stage. At that time the United States clearly prevailed with 5:1.
The second semi-final will feature a duel between defending champions Finland, who knocked out Czech Republic just 1–0 (0–0 1–0 0–0) out of the tournament in the quarter-finals, and Germany (Saturday), at 5.15 pm, Live on ORF Sport+). The latter, after a 2–0 loss in a dramatic match against Switzerland, won 3–2 after a penalty shoot-out and made it to the semi-finals for the first time since 2010. Side detail: All the semi-finalists this year come from Group B.
Canada changes the game
In the top game, the favorite Russians faced the young Canadian team, who, despite their visual superiority in the quarter-finals after three defeats in the group stage, had barely made it to the quarter-finals. It was not until the 35th minute that “Sabornja”, competing as “Russian Olympic Comet” in Latvia due to a penalty imposed by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), scored the opening goal through Yevgeny Timkin. 35th).
But the Canadians did not let themselves be derailed and kept the game open despite the losses. In the third third, the battle of “Maple Leaves” was rewarded. Captain Adam Heinrich equalized in the power play after perfect preparation work by Conor Brown (46th). In extra time, another notable aid initiated the decisive goal in favor of the Canadians. Troy Stitcher danced his way through the Russian defense after more than two minutes of overtime in game three against Three and ideally served Andrew Mangiapen. Star goalkeeper Sergei Bobrovsky, who was specially sent for the final stage in the Russian goal, had no chance.
The Germans return to the shoot-out
In the duel between Germany and Switzerland, Marcel Knoebels, whose role was questionable after injury in the final group game against Latvia, was the match winner with a notable penalty for the Germans in the shoot-out. Earlier, Tom Kuhnhackel (38th) and Leon Gawanke equalized the Swiss 2-0 lead just 43 seconds before the final siren (60th). Thanks to hits from Ramon Untersander (16th) and Fabrice Herzog (34th), the Swiss dreamed of a long – but ultimately futile – semi-final spot.
The team from the German Ice Hockey Federation (DEB) was allowed to celebrate its second victory in its twelfth appearance in the World Cup quarter-finals since 1992. The only success so far was the 2010 domestic World Cup. Still, ironically, the Germans won against Switzerland and finished with fourth place, the best World Cup result since silver in 1953.
Minimalist Finns, Sovereign American Boys
Defending champions Finland brought the Czech Republic to their knees in regular time, but that too with only modest results. Jere Inala scored the only goal of the match in the 33rd minute. Goalkeeper Jussi Olkinuora did the rest. The 30-year-old goalkeeper of Russian KHL club Magnitogorsk overcame all 28 shots made by the Czechs on his goal and kept the Finns to successfully defend their title.
In the quarterfinals against the Slovaks, the United States laid the foundation for a clear breakthrough in the first third with goals from Brian Boyle (14th), Colin Blackwell (16th) and Conor Garland (20th). Peter Sehlrich gave the Slovaks hope of a comeback (33rd), but Blackwell (37th), Alexander Chmelevsky (46th) and Garland with their second goal (59th) eventually ensured a clear position in the United States’ favour.
Ice Hockey World Cup in Riga, Quarterfinals
Russia – Canada 1: 2 n. V.
(0:0 1:0 0:1 / 0:1)
Targets: Timkin (35.) and Henrik (46./pp), Mangiapen (63.)
Finland – Czech Republic 1-0
(0:0 1:0 0:0)
Tor: Innala (33rd)
Switzerland – Germany 2: 3 apt.
(1:0 1:1 0:1 / 0:0 / 1:2)
Goals: Untransender (16th), Herzog (34th) or Kuhnhackel (38th), Gawanke (60th), Marcel Noebles (decisive penalty)
USA – Slovakia 6-1
(3:0 1:1 2:0)
Toure: Boyle (14.), Blackwell (16., 37.), Garland (20., 59.), Chmelevsky (46.) bzw. Sehlerik (33.)