CANADA FALLS TO FINNS AT SHOWCASE
PLYMOUTH, Mich. – Serron Noel (Nepean, Ont./Oshawa, OHL) scored a pair of tallies in the second period, but Canada dropped an 8-3 decision to Finland on Wednesday as part of Canada’s National Junior Team Sport Chek Summer Development Camp. Connor McMichael (Ajax, Ont./London, OHL) also lit the lamp for Canada, which scored three-straight goals in a short-lived comeback attempt after Finland went up 7-0 early in the middle frame.
Alexis Gravel (Asbestos, Que./Halifax, QMJHL) gave his team an opportunity to chip away at the deficit by stopping 12 of the 13 shots he faced after replacing Colten Ellis (Port Hawkesbury, N.S./Rimouski, QMJHL), midway through the second period. Finland positioned itself for victory with a strong first period. After Toni Utunen opened the scoring just 93 seconds in, Patrik Puistola, Joonas Oden and Lassi Thomson scored goals in a 5:08 span midway through the opening stanza to increase the Finnish edge to four, and Sampo Ranta struck with just under two minutes to play.
Aku Räty and Anttoni Honka added goals in the opening four minutes of the second for a seven-goal lead. Noel got Canada’s offence going just shy of the seven-minute mark as he toe-dragged his way past a Finnish defender before solving Justus Annunen with a hard shot from just outside the crease.
The Canadian forward struck again just over three minutes later, re-directing in a point blast from Jonny Tychonick (Calgary, Alta./University of North Dakota, NCHC). McMichael made it 7-3 by sniping a wrist shot past the glove of Annunen for a power-play goal in the final minute of the period.
Utunen capped the scoring late in the third for the Finns, who outshot Canada 37-26.
After an off day Thursday, Canada sees the ice next against Sweden on Friday afternoon (1 p.m. ET/10 a.m. PT).