It will be Canada to play Finland in the final

It will be Canada to play Finland in the final

Robert Newbolt25 May 2019Robert Newbolt»
 

In two contrasting semi-finals Finland saw off Russia in a tight affair and the Czech Republic were no match for Canada.

 
 
 
 

The first semi-final, in the afternoon was a tight affair in which two teams played with very contrasting styles.

The Finnish with their effective ‘dump and chase’ style against the more fluid attacking efforts of Russia.

But it was their captain ANTTILA who scored the third-period winner with 9:42 left as Finland stunned Russia 1-0 in a tense, tactical semi-final to move on to the 2019 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship gold medal game.

Anttila, grabbed the loose puck after Henri Jokiharju's point shot bounced off defenceman Nikita Zaitsev's leg, and fired it through Russian goalie Andrei Vasilevski's gaping five-hole.

Desperate for the equalizer, the Russians pulled goalie Vasilevski for the extra skater with under two minutes to go. Lankinen, a Chicago prospect with the AHL's Rockford IceHogs, stood his ground despite losing his stick in the dying moments, making a fine blocker save on Nikita Kucherov.

The second semi was more straightforward.

The Czechs were never in this game, checked into the ice by Canada from the opening faceoff. Canada also proved superior in creating scoring chances: and capitalizing on them.

The game was only five minutes old when the Canadians  got on the board courtesy of a nice play off the rush. STONE going to the net and finishing off a pass from Stecher to open the scoring.

Worse was to come for the Czechs when, just ten seconds into the second period, NURSE picked up his own rebound and circled the net to score the second.

Just five minutes later it was 3-0 after sensational, three way passing play. DUBOIS got the puck to Stone behind the Czech goal. He eluded his man and made a pass to the other side to Marchessault, and in one motion he put the puck through the crease back to DUBOIS, who stuffed it in for the beauty.

This was too much for Czech coach Milos Riha and he pulled netminder Bartosk in favour of Pavel Francouz.

TURRIS extended the lead to four 6 minutes into the third and CHABOT concluded the Canadian scoring after 53 minutes with a wrister over the glove side of Francouz.

Just 59 seconds later, the Czechs finally beat Murray. Chabot bobbled a stretch pass at his blue line, and Zohorna went in alone and beat Murray with a high shot.

However, this was just a consolation and hard on Murray, who was virtually unbeatable in Canada's goal, stopping 40 of 41 shots.



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