Olympic Update: Four Teams Move Into Semifinal Round

Four teams moved on to the semifinals tonight. Here’s a recap of the games:

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Zach Parise (New Jersey Devils) tallied two goals in the third period as Team USA defeated Switzerland, 2-0, to move into the semifinal round of the Olympic tournament yesterday in Vancouver.

Parise broke a scoreless tie 2:08 into the third period. With Team USA on a powerplay, defenseman Brian

 

Zach Parise
Rafalski (Detroit Red Wings) took a shot from the point that went into a crowd of players. Parise put a stick on the shot, and the puck went off of Jonas Hiller (Anaheim Ducks) and into the net for the goal.

Switzerland nearly tied the game at 3:40 of the period. Sandy Jeannin skated behind the defense and shot the puck from the goal line. The shot beat Ryan Miller (Buffalo Sabres), but the puck caromed off the right post and out of the net.

Parise iced the victory at 19:49 of the third period. The winger fired a shot into Switzerland’s empty net for his second goal of the game.

Hiller finished with 43 saves in the lost. Team USA will face Finland in a semifinal matchup Friday at 3 p.m.

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It was 50 years since Team Canada beat the Russians in Olympic hockey.

After 24 minutes of hockey, the Canadians sealed their trip to the semifinal round.

Team Canada scored seven goals to bury Russia, 7-3, Wednesday night in Vancouver.

Ryan Getzlaf (Anaheim Ducks) began the Canadian scoring 2:21 into the game. Chris Pronger (Philadelphia Flyers) and Dan Boyle (San Jose Sharks) assisted on the goal.

That goal opened the floodgates.

Canada tallied four goals in the first period and two more in the second. At 4:07 in the second period, Russian coach Slava Bykov pulled goaltender Evgeni Nabakov (San Jose Sharks). The starting goalie allowed all six goals. Ilya Brzygalov (Phoenix Coyotes) took over and allowed only one more Canadian goal.

With the win, Canada will face Slovakia in semifinal action Friday.

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Niklas Hagman (Calgary Flames) and Valtteri Filppula (Detroit Red Wings) scored  in the third period to lead Finland over the Czech Reupblic, 2-0, Wednesday night in quarterfinal action.

Hagman broke a scoreless tie with a powerplay goal at 13:34 of the third period. Teammate Janne Niskala assisted on the eventual game-winning goal.

Filppula iced the victory with an empty-net goal at 18:25 of the period. Mikko Koivu (Minnesota Wild) sent a pass to Filppula at the blue line. Filppula carried the puck into the Finnish zone and shot the puck into the empty net for the goal.

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Slovakia scored three goals in the second period to upset Sweden, 4-3, in quarterfinal action.

Marian Gaborik (New York Rangers) broke a scoreless tie with a powerplay goal at 7:34 of the second period. Teammates Marian Hossa (Chicago Blackhawks) and Pavol Demitra (Vancouver Canucks) assisted on the goal.

Andrej Sekera extended the lead to two 37 second later. Richard Zednik (Florida Panthers) and Zigmund Palffy assisted on the goal.

Sweden’s Henrik Zetterberg (Detroit Red Wings) tied the game at two at 14:26 in the period. Tobias Enstrom (Atlanta Thrashers) assisted on the goal.

Demitra gave Slovakia back the lead at 19:12 with a powerplay goal. Zdeno Chara (Boston Bruins) and Hossa assisted on the second powerplay goal of the period for Slovakia.

Tomas Kopecky (Chicago Blackhawks) scored the eventual game-winning goal. Hossa and Demitra were credited with assists on the goal.

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With the losses, two Devils should be returning to the team. Ilya Kovalchuk (Russia) and Patrik Elias (Czech Republic) were knocked out of the tournament tonight. I don’t know when they’ll rejoin the team, but I would think they’d be back by the end of the week.

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