World Juniors Recap: December 29th, 2020

 

There were three blowouts on day five of the tournament but we did see Austria’s first goal of the tournament. A fun fact about the goal, it was scored by a player who was actually born in Belgium in Seena Peeters. Here is a recap of the three games from December 29th, 2020:

News and Notes:

Six of the eight quarterfinal spots have now been secured. Canada, Finland, and Slovakia will represent Group A while Russia, USA, and Sweden have qualified from Group B. In Group A, Canada can not finish below second place while Finland can not drop below third. Slovakia is also unable to win the group but can finish anywhere from second to fourth. In Group B, all three qualified teams can finish anywhere from first to fourth.

The USA versus The Czech Republic:

The US dominated the Czech’s 7-0 to guarantee their spot in the quarterfinals. Although the game was close in the first period, the US slowly took over the game on their way to a dominant win. Spencer Knight bounced back after being pulled against Russia, with a 22 save shutout. The US is starting to find their stride and at the perfect time as they get set for the quarterfinals.

Neither team was able to find the scoresheet in the first period as both teams battled to end the period 0-0. The US was finally able to get on the scoresheet after Brink beat Spokane Cheifs goaltender Lukas Park to make it 1-0 5:33 into the second period. The US kept on pressing and were able to get two more before the end of the period. First Zegras scored his fourth goal of the tournament at 13:30 then Brink potted his second goal of the game at 15:56.

The US continued to dominate and potted another four goals in the third. Zegras at 6:03 followed by three straight powerplay goals scored by Kaliyev at 8:18, Caufield at 10:22, and Boldy at 11:22.

Zegras Leads the Way:

Trevor Zegras was incredible this game registering two goals and three assists in 19:18 of ice time. The ninth overall pick from the 2019 NHL draft will have to put on more performances like this to ensure the US has success at this tournament. Zegras now leads the tournament with 10 points in three games. The US powerplay also came to life during the game. The US came in with only three powerplay goals but was able to double that in last night’s game alone. The powerplay is operating at 46% but will need to continue to take advantage if the US wants to medal at this tournament.

Regroup time for the Czech’s

The Czech’s have a huge game against Austria coming up. If the Czech’s can win or force OT, they move on to the quarters. This will be a good chance for the Czech’s to regroup as a team and try and find their scoring touch. They head in with only three goals throughout the tournament. Luckily for them, Austria has only scored one goal. For the Czech’s missing the quarterfinals will be a huge disappointment so look for them to fire everything at the net, and try and refind their scoring touch.

Next Games:

The US finishes off their group play against Sweden on December 31st at 7:30 pm MST. This is a huge game as it may decide who finishes first or second in the group. The Czechs face Austria at 12:00 MST on the 31st where the Czechs need to win or take the game to OT to move on.

Three Stars from Each Team:

USA:Β 

Trevor Zegras- 2 goals, 3 assists, 3 shots, +2, 19:18 TOI

Bobby Brink- 2 goals, 2 shots, +2, 15:35 TOI

Spencer Knight- 22 save shutout

Czech Republic:

Michal TeplΓ½- 6 shots, 18:07 TOI

Karel Klikorka- 3 shots, 16:33 TOI

Radek Kucerik- 19:44 TOI

Canada versus Switzerland:

In the second blowout of the day, Canada defeated Switzerland 10-0. As with the US game, Canada did not open up the game until the second period where they buried four in the frame. The loss for Switzerland means they will have to beat Germany tomorrow in regulation or their dreams of making the quarterfinals are over.

Canada struck early in the first when Tomasino scored his fourth goal of the tournament 1:30 into the game. The score remained 1-0 at the end of the period despite Canada outshooting the Swiss 14-3 in the frame. Canada opened up the game in the second period thanks to a powerplay goal by Lethbridge Hurricanes Dylan Cozen 1:40 into the period. Canada struck three more times in the frame. First by Pelletier at 8:02, then on the powerplay courtesy of Suzuki at 13:44, and then McMichael at 17:53.

Canada found the back of the net five times in the third period. Byfield scored back to back goals to start off the period. The first was a beautiful tip in front of the net on the powerplay at 5:16 of the period. He then buried his second at 8:07 off a one-time pass from Quinn. At 9:09, Perfetti scored his first goal of the tournament to make it 8-0. Prince Albert Raiders defenceman Kaiden Guhlie added his name to the scoresheet when he potted his second goal of the tournament at 13:28 to make it 9-0. Canada’s last goal came courtesy of Pelletier’s second of the night at 15:35 of the third period to end the game 10-0 for Canada.

Quinton Byfield Shines for Canada:

Byfield finished the day with six points in 11:03 of ice. There has been a lot of chatter around Byfield as he has not produced thus far in the tournament. He silenced his critics tonight with his fantastic performance. Canada will need Byfield to keep producing if they want to make the gold medal game this year. Although they won 10-0, Canada took too many penalties which is concerning. Canada was able to kill off the 10:10 of shorthanded time, but Switzerland is not a powerhouse team. If they continue to take this many penalties, it could cost them when they play teams like Finland, Russia, Sweden, and the US.

Switzerland Needs to Find their Offense:

Switzerland has played three games and has one goal so far. This may sound obvious but you can’t win without scoring. They play the Germans next to determine who moves on to the quarters but have to find a way to get the puck in the net if they have any chance of winning the game. Switzerland has shown they can compete as evidence of their 1-0 loss to Slovakia and holding Finland to only four goals on 43 shots. They have the potential, they just need to put everything together and play a perfect game against the Germans who will have their full team back after finishing quarantine.

Next Games:

Canada will play Finland to decide who wins Group A at 4:00 pm MST on the 31st. Switzerland will play Germany the same day at 12:00 MST to see who makes the quarterfinals and who gets sent home early.

Three Stars from Each Team:

Canada:

Quinton Byfield- 2 goals. 4 assists, 2 shots, +4, 11:03 TOI

Dylan Cozens- 1 goal, 1 assist, 5 shots, +1, 16:51 TOI

Kaiden Guhle- 1 assist, 2 shots, +3, 17:37 TOI

Switzerland:

Noah Patenaude- 42 saves on 52 shots

Raymond Fust- 3 shots, 18:27 TOI

Simon Knak- 1 shot, 20:55 TOI

Russia versus Austira:

The Russians were able to beat Austria 7-1 but the real story of the night was Austria finally scoring their first goal of the tournament. Russia fired 50 shots towards Austrian goaltender Jakob Brandner in a game they dominated from the opening faceoff. Both teams were shutout in their last games so it was great to see both teams able to find the back of the net in the game.

In the first, Russia scored four goals on 17 shots. The first goal came off a penalty shot by Rodion Amirov. It was the first penalty shot goal this tournament and it came at 4:04 of the period. Then Russia’s captain Vasili Podkolzin found the scoresheet twice in a row. The first coming at 6:11 and the second at 13:44 of the period. Lastly, Marat Khusnutdinov scored his first of the tournament at 16:19 to end the period 4-0 for Russia.

In the second, there was a special moment for Austria. 18-year-old Senna Peeters scored Austria’s first goal of the tournament at 7:38 in the second to make the game 4-1. Austria had gone 147:38 without a goal in the tournament so this was a fantastic moment for the team.

In the third period, Russia was back to its scoring ways. The first of three goals came from Knyazev who found the back of the net on a powerplay 1:46 into the period. Yegor Afanasyev at 17:44 and Arseni Gritsyuk at 18:29 each got their first goals of the tournament to end the game 7-1 for the Russians.

Podkolzin Finally Gets On The Scoresheet:

Before the tournament started, there was a lot of pressure placed on the captain Vasili Podkolzin. Through two games, he had not recorded a point and many were concerned with his play. Podkolzin had his best game of the tournament notching two goals and an assist versus Austria. Russia needs Podkolzin if they want to have success in this tournament. Russia has a massive game against Sweden on the 30th that will determine who finishes first in the division. If Russia wins, they have a chance at a top-two finish but if they lose, they need to rely on the US losing to Sweden to get that spot. This will be a great test for Russia as they will do everything in their power to win to potentially avoid Canada and Finland in the quarters.

Austria Finally Gets A Goal:

Austria finally scoring was the feel-good moment of the day. They have played hard despite being outmatched in every game and deserved to finally get one. Now they face the Czechs for a chance in the quarters. They have a chance as the Czechs have had issues scoring this tournament. If Austria’s goalkeeper can continue his run of incredible play, and Austria can get a few goals, they have a chance to upset the Czechs and make it through where they will face either Canada or Finland in the quarters.

Next Games:

Russia takes on Sweden for a chance at the top seed in the group at 7:30 pm MST on December 30th. Austria will take on the Czech Republic on December 31st at 12:00 MST where if Austria wins in regulation, they are through to the quarterfinals.

Three Stars from Each Team:

Russia:Β 

Vasili Podkolzin- 2 goals, 1 assist, 5 shots, +2, 14:11 TOI

Roman Bychkov- 3 assists, 3 shots, +2, 15:54 TOI

Rodion Amirov- 1 goal, 1 assist, 6 shots, +2, 16:21 TOI

Austria:

Senna Peeters- 1 goal, 3 shots, 16:27 TOI

Marco Rossi- 5 shots, 17:53 TOI

Jakob Brandner- 43 saves on 50 shots

DUBNetwork Forums World Juniors Recap: December 29th, 2020

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