WJC roundup: Russia advances to semifinals

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Saturday is the ninth day of the 2021 IIHF World Junior Championship, which is being held at Rogers Place in Edmonton.

 
Quarterfinals results

Russia 2, Germany 1: Vasiliy Ponomarev (Carolina Hurricanes) scored a shorthanded goal Saturday to help Russia reach the semifinals of the 2021 IIHF World Junior Championship, scheduled for Monday.

Danil Bashkirov (2021 draft eligible) also scored for Russia. Iaroslav Askarov (Nashville Predators) made 19 saves.

Florian Elias (2021 draft eligible) scored for Germany. Florian Bugl (2021 draft eligible) made 25 saves. Germany went 0-for-5 with one shot on goal on the power play.

Tim Stuetzle (Ottawa Senators), who entered the quarterfinals tied for third in scoring at the tournament with 10 points (five goals, five assists), had three shots on goal. John-Jason Peterka (Buffalo Sabres), who also scored 10 points (four goals, six assists), had four shots on goal.

Germany was playing in the quarterfinals for the first time since the current tournament format was adopted in 1996.

Ponomarev put Russia ahead 1-0 at 9:15 of the first period when Semyon Chystyakov (Nashville Predators) sent him in alone on a breakaway.

Bashkirov made it 2-0 for Russia at 8:27 of the second period when he took a pass from Egor Afanasyev (Nashville Predators) as he cut through the slot and scored.

Elias scored for Germany to make it 2-1 at 3:24 of the third period. He stole the puck from Russia forward Rodion Amirov (Toronto Maple Leafs) in the high slot and beat Askarov over his glove.

 

On tap

All games on NHL Network in U.S., TSN and RDS in Canada

Finland vs. Sweden (3:30 p.m. ET): Sweden will try to rebound from back-to-back defeats to end the preliminary round, including a 4-0 loss against the United States on Thursday. Better luck on the power play would help; Sweden was 0-for-5 on the man-advantage the past two games. Finland defenseman Ville Heinola (Winnipeg Jets) practiced Friday and should be available. He left a loss against Canada on Thursday during the third period after blocking a shot with his hand.

Canada vs. Czech Republic (7 p.m. ET): Canada’s quest for a third championship in four years continues against the Czech Republic. Canada leads the tournament with 33 goals, including six by Dylan Cozens (Buffalo Sabres), tied for the WJC lead. Canada also has allowed four goals, fewest in the tournament. Canada forward Alex Newhook (Colorado Avalanche) didn’t practice Friday and is day to day after sustaining an upper-body injury against Finland on Thursday. The Czech Republic scored 10 goals in its four games, the second-fewest of the eight teams in the quarterfinals (Slovakia, five), and went 1-for-7 on the power play. In 19 games since Czech Republic began a solo entrant in 1994, Canada has 16 wins and one shootout loss, with two ties.

United States vs. Slovakia (10:30 p.m. ET): U.S. forward Trevor Zegras (Anaheim Ducks) looks to build on his tournament-best 13 points (six goals, seven assists), which is tied for the fifth-most points by a United States player in a single WJC, and the most since Derek Stepan scored 15 points (five goals, 10 assists) in seven games in 2010. Goalie Spencer Knight (Florida Panthers) will start for the United States. He is the first U.S. goalie with back-to-back shutouts, and the United States hasn’t allowed a goal in 180:21, since Russia forward Yegor Chinakhov (Columbus Blue Jackets) scored an empty-net goal with 21 seconds remaining in the third period of a 5-3 loss Dec. 25. A U.S. goalie hasn’t given up a goal in 207:45, in the second period of the loss to Russia. Slovakia has killed 13 of 16 power plays, and it will need its penalty kill to be effective against the United States, which had the best power play during the preliminary round at 40.0 percent (6-for-15).

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