Canada beat Czechs 2-0 to set up final against Russia
By Michael Kahn
PRAGUE (Reuters) - Canada shut out the Czech Republic 2-0 in the ice hockey world championship on Saturday to set up a final against Russia, who rode four late goals to a 4-0 win over the United States.
The Russians will take on a NHL-stocked Canadian squad on Sunday night that has led all nations in scoring and did not lose a game at the group stage.
Against the Czechs, Canada only mustered two goals due in large part to Czech goaltender Ondrej Pavelec who faced 41 shots and made a number of big saves to keep his team in the game.
The Czechs, playing in front of a boisterous crowd, were energized at the start and tested Canadian goalie Mike Smith a number of times.
Canada opened the scoring midway through the first period when Jordan Eberle held off a defenseman before sweeping it to Taylor Hall, who tapped into the net for his seventh goal of the tournament."It's been a while since Canada has been in the finals and we are aware of that," Hall said. "There are a lot of guys on this team looking for their first world championship."
Jason Spezza doubled the lead in the second period when he whipped in a wrist shot from just over the blue line.
The Czechs appeared to have cut the advantage minutes later when a long slapshot floated into the net but the officials ruled out the goal.
Canada were also able to limit 43-year-old Czech great Jaromir Jagr in what could be his last tournament for the national team. Continued...