RUSSIA SCORES FIVE IN THIRD PERIOD TO WIN U17 BRONZE
by David Brien
SYDNEY, N.S. – Despite trailing for the most of the game, Russia scored five unanswered goals in the third period to run away with a 6-2 win over Quebec in Saturday’s bronze medal game at the 2014 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge.
Dmitry Zhukenov paced the Russian offence with a goal and two assists, while Artur Tyanulin chipped in with a goal and a helper.
Ivan Emets, Aleksandr Zhebelev, Mikhail Byakin and Ivan Kashtanov scored the other goals for Russia, which completed a full medal collection – gold, silver and bronze – in consecutive years.
Matthew Boucher (Quebec City, Que./Séminaire St-François, LHMAAAQ), son of former NHLer Philippe Boucher, had both goals for Quebec, which lost the bronze medal game for the second year in a row.
It took just 1:42 for Boucher to open the scoring; Maxime Fortier (Lachine, Que./Lac St-Louis, LHMAAAQ) streaked down the wing and delayed his offensive zone entrance before catching Boucher with a magnificent cross-ice pass.
Boucher’s low blocker-side wrist shot was slightly out of the reach of Russia’s goaltender Nikita Kolesnikov.
Boucher would score again, this time at the 13:41 mark of the first period, when Nicolas Roy (Amos, Que./Chicoutimi, LHJMQ) came around the net and found him all alone atop the slot, and his one-timer beat Kolesnikov.
Russia answered before the end of the opening frame, with Emets beating netminder Olivier Tremblay (Saguenay, Que./Jonquière, LHMAAAQ) less than two minutes after Boucher’s second goal.
A scoreless second period meant Quebec was just 20 minutes from its first medal since 2006, but the third was all Russia.
Five different Russian goal scorers put the puck past Tremblay, beginning with Zhebelev’s power play goal that tied the game at 5:28, followed just 34 seconds later by Zhukenov’s game-winner.
Byakin and Tyanulin scored less than two minutes apart to put the game even further out of reach, and Kashtanov, the Russian captain, found the empty net with 2:01 to go to round out the scoring.
Quebec finished with a 37-27 advantage in shots on goal, but was turned away time and time again by Kolesnikov, who also earned his first point of the tournament by assisting on Kashtanov’s empty-netter.