Slovakia shocks USA in quarter final
After the first real upset of the 2009 World Juniors Slovakia goes to the semi final for the first time since 1999.
Already the quarter finals was a surprise for Slovakia. USA was expected to win their quarter final quite easily but Slovakia and their goalie Jaroslav Janus had other plans and showed that there are no easy games in ice hockey at this level.
Janus started his fantastic game by saving a penalty shot already after 55 seconds, one of Janus 44 saves in total in a game where the USA outshot Slovakia 47-19.
Instead of a penalty shot goal by Schroeder it was Slovakia that took the lead when their top scorer Adam Bezak scored his fourth goal of the tournament. When Ian Cole quickty replied on a power play the favourites seemed to be back on track but the Slovaks quickly retook the lead again when Tomas Tatar scored the first of his two goals tonight.
The surprise team added another goal after a lucky bounce of the referee before the first intermission and headed into the locker room with a lot of energy. Energy that they really needed in the second period where they were outshot 16-2. But the despite the heavily American dominance the second period was scoreless.
USA continued their hunt in the third period and managed to make it 2-3 on a power play. But with about nine minutes left of the game Slovakia once more showed that luck was on their side tonight as Richard Panik's shot was deflected into the goal by an American defender. A goal that was called after a video review.
The US team took a chance and pulled their goalie early, resulting only in a 2-5 goal in an empty net. James van Riemsdyk made the final score 3-5 with a spectacural solo goal but it was to late and the surprise was a fact.
Slovakia will now face Sweden in the semi final. The teams met in the first round and Sweden won that game 3-1.
USA - Slovakia 3-5 (1-3,0-0,2-2)
0-1 (11:05) Adam Bezak (Kytnar, Valach)
1-1 (12:01) Ian Cole (Wilson, Schroeder)
1-2 (13:41) Tomas Tatar (Panik)
1-3 (17:53) Jozef Molnar
2-3 (45:31) Jonathan Blum (Wilson, van Riemsdyk) PP
2-4 (51:38) Richard Panik (Viedensky, Daloga)
2-5 (57:46) Tomas Tatar (Viedensky) ENG
3-5 (58:42) James van Riemsdyk (Shattenkirk, Blum)
Shots: 47-19 (15-8,16-2,16-9)
Story added on 2nd January 2009 at 23:53 GMT
Story submitted by: Fredrik Pålsson.