RIGA, LATVIA – Canada has advanced to the quarter-finals at the 2006 IIHF Men’s World Championship, following a 4-2 win over Finland on Monday. Canada will finish in first or second place in its Qualifying Round pool with 8 points, depending on results from the final games of Qualifying Round on Tuesday, May 16th. In the quarter-finals, Canada will face one of Sweden, Switzerland, Belarus or Slovakia on either May 17th or 18th.
The quarter-final match-ups and schedule will be determined on Tuesday, May 16th with the final two games in Qualifying Round play, the Czech Republic vs. USA and Switzerland vs. Ukraine. Canada will finish first in its pool in the event of a tie between the Czech Republic and the USA, or a USA victory. Should the Czech Republic win, Canada will finish second in its pool on the head-to-head tiebreaker, having lost to the Czech Republic 6-4 on Sunday.
All of Canada’s games, including Canada’s quarter-final game on either May 17th or 18th, are broadcast live from Latvia on TSN/RDS, the official broadcaster of Hockey Canada.
Canada’s special teams were no match for Finland on Monday, as Team Canada registered one power play goal and two shorthanded goals en route to the win. Patrice Bergeron (Ancienne Lorette, QC/ Boston, NHL) opened the scoring in the first period, on a power play, taking a Brad Boyes pass and sliding the puck under Finland’s netminder Antero Nittymaki. Jeff Carter (London, ON/ Philadelphia, NHL) made it 2-0 shorthanded, using a Finnish defenceman as a screen to beat Nittymaki high on the glove side. Mikko Koivu scored for Finland late in the first period as Canada held a 2-1 lead through the first twenty minutes.
Carter scored the only goal of the middle frame, another shorthanded marker, getting a breakaway from his own blueline and beating his NHL teammate Nittymaki on the glove side. After a goal by Petteri Nummelin for Finland, Brad Boyes (Mississauga, ON/ Boston, NHL) restored Canada’s two goal lead in the third period. Marc Denis (Montreal, QC/Columbus, NHL) made 38 saves to earn the victory. Canada has a 5-1-0 record to date at the 2006 IIHF World Championship.
THE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP IN CANADA IN 2008
Canada will host the IIHF World Championship for the first time in 2008, in Halifax and Quebec City, marking the 100th anniversary of the IIHF. For more information, go to www.hockeycanada.ca