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Team Canada Rebounds From Loss to Beat Japan 4-1
NR.025.97
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February 23, 1997
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KUSHIRO, Japan -- Former National team member Chris Bright, added to the National Team roster for its tour of Japan, scored twice to lead Team Canada to a 4-1 victory over the Japanese National Team on Sunday.

The victory was Canada's second in three starts on the six-game tour of Japan, which follows Team Japan's six-game swing through Alberta and B.C. last month. It came two days after a surprising 4-3 victory by the Japanese, their only victory so far in the series.

On Sunday, Ryan Duthie opened the scoring for Canada at 5:18 of the opening period on a setup from linemate George Zajankala. About five minutes later, Duthie set up Zajankala and it was 2-0 for Canada.

Bright made it 3-0 on a setup from Dean Evason at 1:19 of the second period, as Canada grasped firm control of the match. Akihito Sugisawa scored the lone goal for Japan at 11:04 of the second period.

Whatever faint comeback hopes the Japanese entertained were doused midway through the third when, during a Japanese power play, Evason set up Bright for a short-handed goal to widen Canada's lead to 4-1.

'After a disappointing loss in Nikko (on Friday), we rebounded with a strong game,' said Team Canada General Manager and associate coach Mike Johnston. 'If the Japanese goaltender hadn't played so well, it would have been a much wider margin of victory.'

Jiro Nihei faced 46 shots in the game, including 22 in the third period, when Canada outshot Japan 22-5. The 12-game series is part of Team Japan's preparations to play host during the Olympic hockey tournament at the Winter Games in Nagano in February 1998.

The teams play again on Tuesday in Tomakomai.


For more information:

André Brin
Director, Communications
Hockey Canada
403-777-4557
abrin@hockeycanada.ca

Francis Dupont
Manager, Media Relations/Communications
Hockey Canada
403-777-4564
fdupont@hockeycanada.ca

Jason LaRose
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Hockey Canada
403-777-4553
jlarose@hockeycanada.ca

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Coordinator, Communications
Hockey Canada
403-284-6427
klipscombe@hockeycanada.ca

Keegan Goodrich
Coordinator, Media
Hockey Canada
403-284-6484
kgoodrich@hockeycanada.ca

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