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Canada beats Czechs in OT, Sweden edge Finland 1-0 at hockey worlds

Canada beats Czechs in OT, Sweden edge Finland 1-0 at hockey worlds

Erik Staal scored 23 second into overtime Sunday to give Canada a 4-3 win over the Czech Republic, which still reached the quarterfinals at the hockey world championship.
The Czechs would have needed Belarus to beat favored Germany on Monday to advance, but the point they earned by going into overtime was enough.
Pavol Demitra scored the winning goal to give Slovakia a 4-3 victory over Belarus and also reach the quarterfinals.
In Moscow, Johan Akerman scored and Johan Backlund made 38 saves in Sweden's 1-0 win over Finland.
Marek Zidlicky gave the Czechs the lead with a slap shot from inside the blue line that sailed over Dwayne Roloson's glove at 13:17. Erik Brewer was in the box for roughing.
Jay McClement evened the score for Canada at 2:15 of the second period, flicking the puck over the shoulder of Roman Cechmanek, who had stopped playing after hearing a fan's whistle.
Tomas Plekanek put the Czechs back in the lead on the power play at 12:05 of the second period, but Staal made it 2-2 by beating Cechmanek with a backhand at 3:22 of the third.
Rostislav Olesz then knocked in a rebound to make it 3-2 for the Czechs at 6:36, but Shane Doan forced the extra period by shooting through Cechmanek's pads at 10:57.
"We were chasing them all night. We've got to find a way to eliminate penalties," Doan said. "At the end of the game they were satisfied with the tie and they sat back a bit. They knew they were on to the next round."
In a rematch of the gold medal game at the Turin Olympics, Sweden and Finland played a free-flowing game that featured superb goaltending at both ends.
However, Finland goalie Kari Lehtonen made one mistake.
On Akerman's long shot from the blue line, Lehtonen gloved the puck but it popped out and trickled across the line at 15:53 of the first period.
"I was very surprised," Akerman said. "I had turned my back on the play and didn't even see it go in the net. The last thing I saw was the puck going high and wide and he was moving to catch it."
Needing a regulation-time win to advance, Belarus pulled goalkeeper Andrei Mezin for the extra attacker more than a minute before the buzzer. Demitra then sent a pass from Marian Gaborik into the empty net with 39 seconds left.
Zdeno Chara of Slovakia and Aleksei Ugarov of Belarus each scored in the first period.
The Slovaks reclaimed the lead when Gaborik scored back-to-back goals in the first five minutes of the second period. Belarus again replied with Oleg Antonenko scoring at 33:47 and Konstantin Koltsov adding the tying goal 30 seconds later.
"We talked about not underestimating them and at the beginning I think we did a bit," Gaborik said.
In Moscow, Ilya Kovalchuk scored a goal and set up another to lead Russia over Switzerland 6-3.
Alexander Ovechkin was ejected from the game at 8:42 of the first period for a check to the head of Valentin Wirz, who needed to be helped off the ice. IIHF officials said Ovechkin could face disciplinary action.
In relegation round play, Ukraine defeated Norway 3-2 to keep alive its hopes of remaining in world hockey's elite division.
Both teams still have a chance to play in the top division next year. Ukraine must beat Austria on Monday, while Norway needs to beat Latvia and have Austria beat Ukraine.