International Ice Hockey Federation

Young lions win at home

Young lions win at home

Finnish U18 team beats Sweden in overtime

Published 15.08.2018 10:50 GMT+5 | Author Martin Merk
Young lions win at home
Arttu Nevasaari (pictured against Canada’s Carson Focht during the 2016 Youth Olympics), helped Finland win the Five Nations tournament on home ice as scoring leader of the event. Photo: Fredrik Olastuen
Finland won a competitive Five Nations tournament on home ice in which five games went into overtime including the deciding one where the Suomi beat Sweden 2-1.

It wasn’t a perfect start for the Finns in the tournament in Hameenlinna though. The Finns were trailing 2-1 against the Czech Republic in the first game despite outshooting their opponent before Kristian Tanus tied it up with the goalie pulled and 26 seconds left in regulation time. However, in the extra period Jan Jenik scored the game-winner for the Czechs at 4:29.

The Young Lions showed the reaction the next day. They beat Switzerland, which surprised with a opening-day victory against reigning world champion USA on the first day, 6-2 with two goals from Patrik Siikanen.

Then they faced two of the favourites. Team USA, which travelled to Finland with 20 full-time players from the National Team Development Program who were joined by forwards Ryder Donovan and Philippe Lapointe, didn’t have a good start as Arttu Nevasaari scored a pair of goals, the second shorthanded, to give Finland a two-goal cushion. Mattias Samuelsson cut the lead for Team USA 40 seconds later. The defenceman is the son of former Swedish world champion Kjell Samuelsson, who has stayed as a coach in the system of the Philadelphia Flyers, the club he played for during nine NHL seasons.

The Finns made it 3-1 in the second period but Team USA came back with goals from Joel Farabee and Samuelsson. Eventually a shootout had to decide the winner and the Finns did well converting four of the five shots to win it 4-2 and get the extra point.

Sweden was leading the standings before the last day after wins against the Czechs (4-1) and USA (2-0), and a 3-2 shootout loss against Switzerland.

The Swedes did it better at the start of the game against Finland. In front of 580 fans Jonatan Berggren opened the scoring at 4:16. Penalty trouble gave the Finns an advantage for the rest of the period but the Swedes defended the lead for most of the game until the Finns eventually succeeded in front of goalie Olof Lindbom. Nevasaari, who became the tournaments scoring leader with three goals and five points, tied the game at 9:13 of the third period.

The Finns, who outshot Sweden 32-22, had more chances including a power play late in the period and eventually converted the man advantage at 1:53 of overtime. Samuel Fagemo was ready to return from the penalty box when Lassi Thomson’s shot went in for the tournament win on home ice.

Sweden finished the event in second place while the Americans recovered from three straight losses (with two points for reaching overtime twice) and blanked the Czech Republic 3-0 in the last game to take third place. The Czechs were fourth and the Swiss, also with a 2-2 record, last.

Switzerland had the only other player beside Nevasaari who scored three goals with Jeremi Gerber, who was second in the scoring table. Finnish defenceman Anttoni Honka shone with five points (all from assists) and Swedish goalie Lindbom with a 97.10 save percentage.

Germany from 4-0 deficit to tournament win

Germany, which has been battling for promotion in the Division I recently, won a Four Nations tournament on home ice in Fussen by winning all three games against higher-ranked competitors.

On the opening day the Germany beat favourite Slovakia 5-4 in shootout. The Slovaks blew a 4-0 (!) lead they had established after 23 minutes of play with yet unanswered goals from Maxim Cajkovic, Jakub Nespala, Sebastian Cederle and Karol Vrbka. It took the Germans less than seven minutes to make up for the unsuccessful start. Erik Betzold scored twice and Justin Schutz and Edwin Schitz also hit the back of the net before the end of the second period. The goal galore stopped from that moment on and eventually the shootout decided in Germany’s favour.

Against Belarus the Germans had another come-from-behind win, 5-3, with two goals from Schutz same as again Denmark where three unanswered goals from Yannik Valenti, Dennis Lobach and Schutz led to a 3-2 victory and tournament win.

The Slovaks beat Denmark (4-2) and Belarus (4-3) to claim third place in the tournament. Denmark had its only win on the first day, 2-1 against Belarus.

Slovakia’s Cajkovic was the tournament’s scoring leader with seven points (2+5). Schutz from Germany and Belarusian forward Viktor Masilevich were the top goal scorers with four markers.

Italy and Latvia succeed

In other U18 events Latvia succeeded in a three-game exhibition series against Norway winning two games while Italy won a Four Nations tournament in Budapest ahead of host Hungary, Slovenia and Austria.

Five Nations Tournament in Finland
8 Nov.   Hameenlinna (FIN) USA Switzerland 2-3 SO
8 Nov.   Hameenlinna (FIN) Finland Czech Rep. 2-3 OT
9 Nov.   Hameenlinna (FIN) Sweden Czech Rep. 4-1
9 Nov.   Hameenlinna (FIN) Finland Switzerland 6-2
10 Nov.   Hameenlinna (FIN) USA Sweden 0-2
10 Nov.   Hameenlinna (FIN) Switzerland Czech Rep. 0-4
11 Nov.   Hameenlinna (FIN) Finland USA 4-3 SO
11 Nov.   Hameenlinna (FIN) Sweden Switzerland 2-3 SO
12 Nov.   Hameenlinna (FIN) Finland Sweden 2-1 OT
12 Nov.   Hameenlinna (FIN) Czech Rep. USA 0-3
Standings: 1. Finland 8, 2. Sweden 8, 3. USA 5, 4. Czech Rep. 5, 5. Switzerland 4. 
Four Nations Tournament in Germany
9 Nov.   Fussen (GER) Belarus Denmark 1-2
9 Nov.   Fussen (GER) Germany Slovakia 5-4 SO
10 Nov.   Fussen (GER) Denmark Slovakia 2-4
10 Nov.   Fussen (GER) Germany Belarus 5-3
11 Nov.   Fussen (GER) Slovakia Belarus 4-3
11 Nov.   Fussen (GER) Germany Denmark 3-2
Standings: 1. Germany 8, 2. Slovakia 7, 3. Denmark 3, 4. Belarus 0.  
Four Nations Tournament in Hungary
9 Nov.   Budapest (HUN) Austria Slovenia 4-5 SO
9 Nov.   Budapest (HUN) Hungary Italy 1-3
10 Nov.   Budapest (HUN) Slovenia Italy 0-1
10 Nov.   Budapest (HUN) Austria Hungary 1-3
11 Nov.   Budapest (HUN) Italy Austria 5-2
11 Nov.   Budapest (HUN) Hungary Slovenia 6-2
Standings: 1. Italy 9, 2. Hungary 6, 3. Slovenia 2, 4. Austria 1.  
Other games  
9 Nov.   Ullensaker (NOR) Norway Latvia 0-3
10 Nov.   Ullensaker (NOR) Norway Latvia 3-4 OT
11 Nov.   Ullensaker (NOR) Norway Latvia 3-2 OT


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