Canada withstands Slovakia upset bid

Photo Courtesy of Hockey Canada Canadian forwards Jakob Pelletier (#12) and Connor Zary (#9) battle for position in front of Slovakian netminder Samuel Hlavaj on Sunday evening in Edmonton.

Schneider suspended for Sunday’s affair following check to the head penalty against Germany

Canada’s second game at the 2021 World Juniors was the exact opposite of their opening contest of Group A play in Edmonton.

After a 16-2 rout over Germany on Boxing Day, the tournament hosts had a much tighter matchup Sunday as they edged out Slovakia by a score of 3-1 at Rogers Place.

Jordan Spence (Moncton Wildcats) found the back of the net early for Canada but the score remained at 1-0 until late in the third period, when Phillip Tomasino (Oshawa Generals) converted a pass from Dylan Cozens (Lethbridge Hurricanes).

Slovakia drew back within a goal with less than 90 seconds to go on a power play marker by Martin Chromiak (Kingston Frontenacs), but Canada would seal the deal with 13 seconds left on the clock with an empty-net tally by Jack Quinn (Ottawa 67’s).

Tomasino led the way on offence for the victor with a goal and an assist, while Devon Levi (Northeastern Huskies) made 17 saves to help Canada improve to 2-0.

Samuel Hlavaj (Sherbrooke Phoenix) turned aside 20 shots to earn player of the game honours for Slovakia, who saw their record drop 1-1.

Prince Albert Raiders blueliner Kaiden Guhle was held without a point in the win, while local product Braden Schneider did not play as he served a one-game suspension for a checking to the head major penalty he took in the first period on Saturday against Germany.

The Brandon Wheat Kings defenceman is expected to be back in the lineup on Tuesday when Canada will take on Switzerland.

Forward Dylan Holloway (Wisconsin Badgers) was also out of Canada’s squad for the game against Slovakia as he’s currently day-to-day with an upper body injury.


Group A

  1. Canada – 6 points
  2. Finland – 6 points
  3. Slovakia – 3 points
  4. Germany – 0 points
  5. Switzerland – 0 points

Group B

  1. Czech Republic – 3 points
  2. Russia – 3 points
  3. Sweden – 3 points
  4. United States – 3 points
  5. Austria – 0 points

Round-Robin Scores and Schedules

Friday, Dec. 25

  • Slovakia 1 Switzerland 0 (Simon Latkoczy (Madison Capitols) – 28 Saves)
  • Finland 5 Germany 3 (Aku Raty (Arizona Coyotes Draft Pick) – One Goal and One Assist)
  • Russia 5 United States 3 (Vasili Ponomaryov (Shawinigan Cataractes – Carolina Hurricanes Prospect) – Two Goals)

Saturday, Dec. 26

  • Sweden 7 Czech Republic 1 (Phillip Broberg (Edmonton Oilers Prospect) – Three Assists)
  • Canada 16 Germany 2 (Dylan Cozens (Lethbridge Hurricanes – Buffalo Sabres Prospect) – Three Goals and Three Assists)
  • United States 11 Austria 0 (Trevor Zegras (Boston Terriers – Anaheim Ducks prospect) – Two Goals and Two Assists – Matthew Boldy (Boston College Eagles – Minnesota Wild draft pick) – Three Goals)

Sunday, Dec. 27

  • Finland 4 Switzerland 1 (Anton Lundell (Florida Panthers Draft Pick) – One Goal and One Assist)
  • Canada 3 Slovakia 1 (Phillip Tomasino (Oshawa Generals – Nashville Predators Prospect) – One Goal and One Assist)
  • Czech Republic 2 Russia 0 (Lukas Parik (Spokane Chiefs – Los Angeles Kings draft pick) – 30 Saves)

Monday, Dec. 28

  • 5 p.m. – Austria vs. Sweden
  • 8:30 p.m. – Slovakia vs. Germany

Tuesday, Dec. 29

  • 1 p.m. – United States vs Czech Republic
  • 5 p.m. – Canada vs. Switzerland
  • 8:30 p.m. – Austria vs. Russia