US Falls to Slovakia in OT; Russia Beats Sweden in Worlds

In the final day of the preliminary round at the 2016 IIHF World Championship, two games involving members of the New Jersey Devils were played.

The Americans clinched a quarter final berth by virtue of finishing in fourth place in Group B. This came despite a 3-2 overtime loss against Slovakia at St. Petersburg’s Yubileiny Arena.

Slovakia took a 1-0 lead late in the first period when Christian Jaros scored at 18:39 off an assist from Marek Viedensky.

The US would tie things up in the second period when the Slovaks took their first of only two penalties in the game. The American power play would go 1-for-2 when Brock Nelson scored on that first stint with the extra man. David Warsofsky and Frank Vatrano had the assists.

Team USA would take the lead just two minutes into the third period when Nick Foligno scored (from Dylan Larkin). But ten minutes later, Slovakia would tie things off a goal from Pavol Skalicky (assists to Tomas Marcinko and Dominik Granak).

The score was 2-2 and that is how it would stay until exactly 59 seconds into the extra session. Slovakia’s Marko Dano scored the game winner from Ivan Svarny and Andrej Meszaros.

Keith Kinkaid was back in net for Team USA and made 27 stops on 30 Slovakian shots. Julius Hudacek made 23 saves off 25 American shots.

Other Devils who participated in the game were: Steve Santini, who saw only 1:33 of ice time on two shifts; Miles Wood, who had 6:34 of ice time on nine shifts and Warsofsky, who had an assist on the Nelson goal and was a minus-1 all in 14:22 of ice time over 22 shifts.

Coach John Hynes and the US now move on to the Group B quarter finals, which get under way on Thursday.

The other Devils-related game played today (and one of the more anticipated matchups in the tournament) featured Russia taking on Sweden at the Ice Palace in Moscow.

This game was almost all Russia from the get go.

The Russians took a 1-0 lead 14:43 into the first period when Yevgeni Dadonov scored from Artemi Panarin and Vadim Shipachyov. Panarin would add another one three minutes and change later to make it 2-0 Russia (assists to Shipachyov and Alexei Marchenko).

Early into the second period, Russia took a bench minor to give Sweden a power play. However, on the power play, Sweden’s Jimmie Ericsson took a slashing call to make things 4-on-4. With the extra room, Pavel Datsyuk beat goaltender Jacob Markstrom to make it 3-0 (assist to Nikita Zaitsev).

Russia finished up the second frame by scoring with twenty seconds left when Roman Lyubimov lit the lamp (assists to Sergei Mozyakin and Datsyuk).

The Swedes would get on the board early in the third after Vyacheslav Voinov took a tripping penalty just 25 seconds into the period. Sweden scored on the ensuing power play when Mattias Ekholm scored from Adam Larsson and Alexander Wennberg. But it was too little too late, as Russia came away with the 4-1 victory.

Sergei Bobrovsky made 36 saves for Russia on 37 Swedish shots. For Sweden, Markstrom made 36 saves while facing 40 Russian shots.

For the Devils involved in this game, Sergei Kalinin had one shot in 12:11 of ice time spread out over 17 shifts. Larsson had the assist on Ekholm’s power play goal and was a minus-2 in 21:13 of ice time over 31 shifts. His ice time was second only to Ekholm, who had 36 seconds more on only 28 shifts.

Both Russia and Sweden will now move on to the quarter finals in Group A.

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