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Canada beats USA: Top of Pool A

TAMPERE – The quarter-final picture is complete. Host Finland remains undefeated at the 2015 IIHF Inline Hockey World Championship after beating Sweden 9-1 as does Canada after beating the U.S. 5-4 in overtime. Slovakia won its first game in shootout against Germany while the Czech Republic beat Slovenia 3-2. In Division I play Argentina got its first win in four years in a dramatic 4-3 overtime decision against Hungary. Latvia and Croatia won their groups while Austria got its first win.


Quarter-Finals on 9th July

USA vs. Sweden 14:00
Czech Republic vs. Slovakia 16:00
Finland vs. Germany 18:00
Canada vs. Slovenia 20:00

All games will be streamed live. Times are local (EET).

Canada vs. USA 5-4 (0-1, 3-2, 0-0, 1-1, 1-0) OT Highlights

The eternal rivalry between the two North American teams continued in the preliminary round. Like in last year’s semi-final win for Canada the game was tied after regulation time. Again Canada was the winner after Dave Hammond’s overtime goal.

Team USA had the better start with two goals but the momentum changed when Canada scored three goals in the second period including a pair of markers from Thomas Woods.

“It feels good. We are rivals and I have friends on their team I often play against. Everytime we play them we know it’s going to be a tight game,” Woods said. “It was a team effort and everybody around us was playing well.”

The Americans outshot Canada 7-3 in the first period. Tyler Spezia’s goal gave the U.S. the lead capitalizing on the first penalty of the game. Early in the second period Derrick Burnett made it 2-0 for Team USA but then Canada eventually showed a reaction.

Adam Ross scored the first goal for Canada at 4:04 of the second period when he skated through the American defence on the right and beat Troy Redmann with a shot to the far side of the net.

Matt White restored Team USA’s two-goal lead with a shot from between the face-off circles – the second power-play goal for the Americans in two attempts, and the last as Canada wouldn’t take any more penalties.

The Canadians didn’t give up and Woods cut the American lead at 10:30. And after a nice double-pass play with Brett Bulmer with 27 seconds left before the half-time break he scored again to tie the game at three.

The game remained scoreless for a while until at 4:15 of the fourth period Team Canada gained the lead for the first time on a distance shot from Chris Rauckman.

Now the Americans had to react and covered Canadian goalie Brett Leggat with shots. It didn’t seem to work out until White had another great moment. He fast-tracked the Canadian defence with a rush along the left boards, went between Peter Kavaya and Travis Noe close to the crease to shoot the puck behind Leggat. With 3:21 left the game was re-launched with a 4-4 tie.

The teams were cautious in the extra period but couldn’t prevent thrilling rushes on both sides. At 3:43 Dave Hammond led a quick attack of the Canadians and hammered the puck in for the 5-4 game-winning goal.

The win earns Canada first place in the group and a quarter-final clash with winless Slovenia while Team USA will have to continue against Sweden on Thursday.

Finland vs. Sweden 9-1 (2-0, 2-0, 1-0, 4-1) Highlights

In the preliminary-round game most anticipated by the local crowd Finland steamrolled its neighbour Sweden 9-1 in front of 4,414 fans in Tampere.

Mikko Pukka netted the puck four times while Jimi Palanto and Marko Virtala had two markers each. Janne Laakkonen also scored for Finland while Robin Sjoren scored the only goal for Sweden.

Sasu Hovi had a great night in the Finnish with 27 saves as Finland outshot Sweden 36-28.

“It was a good game that we wanted to win,” Pukka said. “Most important is that we won the game not matter what score but it’s always nice to score. We got better every game here.”

Finland opened the scoring at 3:37 when Virtala skated through the Swedish defence on the right and beat Swedish goaltender Ludvig Engsund on the left side. Three-and-a-half minutes later Laakkonen doubled the lead by scoring on his own rebound for the 2-0 first-period score.

The Swedes also had their chances to score but Hovi had an excellent start in the Finnish net while his teammates took care of the goals.

Palanto scored the 3-0 goal with a precise shot at 7:09 of the second period and 80 seconds later Pukka deflected a shot into the Swedish net after a horizontal pass from Palanto on a well executed power play.

Also in the third period the Swedes had trouble scoring on Hovi and didn’t manage to capitalize on a double minor against Palanto. And to make it worse, with a delayed penalty call against Sweden Virtanen made it 5-0 for Finland with a shot that went in just under the crossbar.

Sweden eventually got itself onto the scoreboard at 3:01 of the fourth period when team captain Robin Sjoren found the space on the floor and in the net to score the 5-1 marker with a shot to the far side. But instead of a Swedish comeback the fans in Tampere saw Finland increase the score to lopsided spheres.

43 seconds after the Swedish goal Pukka answered with the 6-1 marker after Palanto’s pass from behind the net and just over two minutes he added another one after deflecting Virtala’s pass to the crease before Palanto also scored another marker for the 8-1 score.

With 2.7 left on the game clock Pukka was again all smile when he scored his fourth goal of the night for the final score of 9-1.

Germany vs. Slovakia 1-2 (1-0, 0-1, 0-0, 0-0, 0-0, 0-1) SO Highlights

Slovakia got its first win in a 2-1 shootout win against Germany. Vladimir Neumann shone with 41 saves.

Germany and Slovakia had both lost to the North American teams in the group stage and challenged each other until the penalty shootout before Slovakia got the first win of the tournament with Tomas Jakos’ two shootout goals.

Although Germany outshot the Slovaks 42-26, it remained an open and low-scoring game also thanks to excellent goaltending from Neumann and Germany’s Jochen Vollmer.

At 6:29 of the first period Germany opened the scoring. Yannik Baier sent a pass from behind the opponent’s net to Christian Poetzel but it hit an opponent’s stick and went in from there. It was a lucky goal but a well-deserved lead considering the 14-3 shots on goal in Germany’s favour in the first period.

“It was a tough game. We knew we had to win if we wanted to be third in our group,” said Neumann, who in the winter plays ice hockey for HO Hamikovo in the third-tier Slovak league.

“In the first period we didn’t do what we said in the locker room. We had a lot of penalty kills but we got through and in the second period we started to play our game and played well in defence.”

The Slovaks improved their game both offensively and defensively in the second period and at 7:26 they tied it up when Roman Simunek’s shot from 15 metres went in behind a screened Vollmer.

Both teams had chances to decide the game during regulation time but the goaltenders kept their net clean also during the five-minute overtime period to force a shootout decision.

Penalty shootout:
Round 1: GER #20 Seifert – 1-0, SVK #9 Ruckay – save
Round 2: GER #18 Krzizok – missed, SVK #28 Preisinger – 1-1.
Round 3: GER #13 Tolzer – 2-1, SVK #16 Jasko – 2-2.
Round 3: SVK #28 Preisinger – missed, GER #20 Seifer – missed.
Round 4: SVK #16 Jasko – 2-3, GER #3 Schmidle – post.

Czech Republic vs. Slovenia 3-2 (1-0, 2-1, 0-0, 0-1) Highlights

The Czechs opened the scoring after eight minutes of play during their second man advantage. Pavel Strycek was positioned well in front of the net to capitalize on a rebound after a Michal Simo shot from the left side.

Although the Czechs outshot the Slovenes, their opponent played a competitive game. With a nice backhand shot Jure Sotlar tied the game for Slovenia at 6:58 of the second period. He skated on the right and found the gap between Czech defenceman Jan Zahradnicek and goalie Ondrej Haloda.

Saso Rajsar even had the chance to gain the lead for Slovenia on a breakaway but his attempt ended at Haloda and the Czechs reacted immediately on the other side.

Tomas Rubes skated from right to left to the crease and scored magnificently with a high shot from an acute angle when Slovenian goalie Tomaz Trelc went down. Only 70 seconds after regaining the lead Mikulas Zboril scored the 3-1 goal for the Czech Republic with a perfect shot from the face-off circle to the far side to leave the ice for the half-time break with a two-goal cushion.

After a scoreless third period Rajsar cut Slovenia’s deficit to one goal when he capitalized on a rebound after a long shot from defenceman Miha Brus to set up a challenge for the Czechs in the last nine minutes of regulation time but it was too little to tie the game again.

The Czechs are now in second place before tonight’s Finland-Sweden game while Slovenia finished the group in last place and will play the top-ranked team of Group B – Team USA or Canada – in Thursday’s quarter-finals.


Quarter-Finals on 9th July

Australia vs. Austria 13:00
Great Britain vs. Hungary 15:00
Croatia vs. Bulgaria 17:00
Latvia vs. Argentina 19:00

All games will be streamed live. Times are local (EET).

Australia vs. Croatia 4-9 (0-2, 1-3, 1-1, 2-3)

Croatia gave Australia its first defeat at the tournament, 9-4, and took first place in Group D to set up a quarter-final meeting with winless Bulgaria.

The Croats were the more efficient team and started with three unanswered goals from Ivan Jankovic, Marko Tadic and Domen Vedlin. Each team Australia would come back by a goal the Croats managed to find the answer in the form of more goals. They entered the half-time break with a 5-1 lead and extended it in the following two periods.

Jankovic and Niksa Trstenjak each scored a pair of goals for Croatia.

Great Britain vs. Latvia 5-6 (2-4, 1-1, 1-1, 1-0)

Latvia finished its group in strong fashion and edged Great Britain 6-5 to enter Thursday’s quarter-finals as first-ranked of Group C in a clash with Argentina.

Defenceman James Archer opened the scoring for Great Britain after 75 seconds of play but Latvia reacted with two goals scored within less than a minute by Roberts Lipsbergs and Aleksandrs Kercs.

Rudolfs Maslovskis and Miks Lipsbergs added two more goals and Dan Hutchinson had one in between for Great Britain for a first-period score of 4-2 in Latvia’s favour.

In the second period Aleksandrs Galkins extended the lead for Latvia on a power play but Karl Niamatali scored Great Britain’s third goal.

Great Britain twice came as close as one goal in the second half of the game. Joey Ganley scored 42 seconds into the third period but a few moments later Miks Lipsbergs restored the two-goal lead with his second marker.

At 2:43 of the fourth period Ben Lowe cut the deficit again but Latvia managed to defend the 6-5 lead for the remainder of the game.

Hungary vs. Argentina 3-4 (2-0, 1-1, 0-1, 0-1, 0-1) OT

Two years ago Argentina lost to Hungary in a shootout, this time they took revenge with a 4-3 overtime win coming back from a 3-1 deficit. It was Argentina’s first win at an IIHF Inline Hockey World Championship in four years.

Marton Mach and Zoltan Revak scored the goals for a 2-0 first-period lead for Hungary. After Rodrigo Irisarri had brought Argentina on the scoreboard early in the second period, Akos Kiss restored Hungary’s two-goal lead.

The Argentines reacted in the second half of the game. Facundo Vadra scored the 3-2 goal at 4:49 of the third period and with 20 seconds left in regulation time – with 6-on-4 players on a power play and with the goalie pulled – Sebastian Bustos tied the game at three to force the first extra period of the World Championship.

At 1:59 of overtime it was Vadra, who scored the game-winning goal for Argentina.

Austria vs. Bulgaria 8-0 (1-0, 2-0, 3-0, 2-0)

In a game for third place in the group between two winless teams Austria blanked Bulgaria 8-0. The Bulgarians managed to keep the score in the first period low when Johannes Lins scored the only goal but the Austrians increased their goal production.

Lins and Harry Lange scored a pair of goals each. Christian Haidinger, Gerd Gruber, Andre Niec and Tobias Schonauer scored the other markers for Austria.

IIHF Worlds: Day 2 Wrapup


Canada vs. Germany 6-4 (3-0, 2-1, 0-2, 1-1) Highlights

Canada remains undefeated but beating Germany 6-4 was tough work after a seemingly easy start.

Canada already opened the scoring 44 seconds into the game. Dave Hammond sent a long shot through traffic and Josh Foote scored on the rebound. It was not the start Germany was hoping for as three minutes later goaltender Jochen Vollmer had to leave the net limping.

With 46 seconds left Adam Ross scored the second goal that went in via the right goal post. With seven seconds left he added another one for the 3-0 lead. The goal was reviewed for interference and deemed correct.

Patrick Seifert reacted for the Germans early in the second period when he appeared alone in front of the Canadian net to beat Brett Leggat for the 3-1 marker.

But the Canadians tried to prevent a German comeback. At 3:09 Thomas Woods restored the three-goal lead with a long shot into the top-left corner. And with another distance shot Ross completed his hat trick for the 5-1 lead with 3:46 to go in the second period.

“The first half of the game was good. We played our game and did what we wanted to do,” Ross said.

“In the second half we let up a bit and didn’t stick to our game plan and had to battle hard until the end.”

The Germans improved their play, had more puck possession and scoring chances, and were rewarded with two third-period goals to bring hopes for an equalizer within reach.

Alexander Duck scored Germany’s second goal of the game putting the puck through Leggat’s five-hole after a side pass from Max Schmidle at 5:03 of the third period. Three minutes later Patrick Seifert managed to escape from the Canadian defence and circled the puck around Leggat’s pads for the 5-3 marker. On a power play early in the fourth period Schmidle got credited for a deflected shot that decreased the Canadian cushion to just one marker but 40 seconds later Hammond made it 6-4 with another power-play goal.

Germany continued putting pressure on the Canadian net and played five-on-four with the goalkeeper pulled for final two minutes but with the chances unused Canada’s 6-4 win became final.

Canada will now play the United States for the top spot into the group.

“We have a tough game and a little bit of work to do,” Ross said.

Winless Germany and Slovakia will battle for third place in Group B.

Finland vs. Czech Republic 7-3 (0-0, 5-1, 1-1, 1-1) Highlights<

Host Finland remains undefeated in the 2015 IIHF Inline Hockey World Championship after beating the Czech Republic 7-3.

Like in the teams’ last encounter two years ago, a 5-4 overtime win for Finland, the first period ended scoreless. 2,197 spectators saw the Finns outshoot the Czechs 9-4 in the opening frame but their team didn’t capitalize on its chances.

That changed in the second period. It was a six-minute blackout in the Czech defence that allowed the Finns to showcase their skill and decide the game.

A great rush of Jimi Palanto gave Finland the lead at 2:55 of the second period. The Tampere native skated towards the goal crease with three Czechs around him and beat Czech goaltender Ondrej Haloda.

Kari Lohtander added another goal already 64 seconds later with a hard shot into the far top corner. Less than two minutes later Lohtander added another goal when he got the puck after a pass that was interrupted by a Czech skate. A minute later Palanto was left alone at the left boards and beat Haloda for the 4-0 lead after a nice deke. Markus Jokinen added another one with a high shot after a horizontal pass from Palanto.

“It was a good win. We had a good start although we had a couple of mistakes after the 5-0 goal. We have to make sure not to do these,” Lohtander said.

Shortly before the half-time break the Czechs finally found their way into the game. Michal Simo cut the lead with a distance shot on a power play with 1:56 left to finish the first half of the game with a 5-1 lead for Finland. After 91 seconds in the third period Simo scored again to bring the result within reach for his team. But less than three minutes later Janne Laakkonen restored the four-goal lead for Finland.

Laakkonen then was called a minor penalty for high sticking at the end of the period and while the Finn was serving the penalty, Zdenek Kubica scored the third goal for the Czechs.

With the Finnish lead cut to 6-3, the Czechs tried to work on their comeback and had a couple of chances, another power play and a post shot from Simo but Juha Taponen kept his net clean for the remainder of the game while Palanto added a third goal on a breakaway with three seconds left for the final score of 7-3.

Tomorrow the Finnish Lions will meet Sweden in a much anticipated game that will decide about first place in the group.

“Our lovely neighbour Sweden. It couldn’t be easier to motivate us for the last game,” Lohtander said. The game will again be played at 18:00 local time. The Czechs will play Slovenia at 14:00.

USA vs. Slovakia 6-0 (2-0, 3-0, 1-0, 0-0) Highlights<

Team USA won its second game on the second day of the 2015 IIHF Inline Hockey World Championship. After beating Germany 7-3 the Americans blanked Slovakia 6-0.

The Americans outshot the Slovaks 44-12. Travis Noe shone with a hat trick and four points but revealed that the more important number for the team than the six goals scored was the zero goals conceded.

“It was a good game for our team. We want to play good defensive hockey so getting no goal was a priority,” Noe said and added: “Our goalie James Mello had a good game.”

Team USA started their goal galore already with the first shift. 18 seconds into the game Tyler Spezia sent a side pass to Nielsson Arcibal, who converted for the opening marker.

Four minutes later Noe then made it 2-0 with a shot into the near high corner.

Cody Kettler extended the lead with what almost looked like a copy of the second goal after receiving a long pass to the crease from Noe at 5:56 of the second period. Only 13 seconds later Noe scored his second goal of the day by deflecting a Kyle Novak pass through Viktor Valuch’s five-hole for the 4-0 lead forcing Slovakia to use its time-out.

However, coach Imrich Antal’s speech seemed to make inroads only for a few minutes. With 57.4 left in the period Noe completed his hat trick with a point shot on a power play for the 5-0 half-time lead.

Also in the third period the direction was mostly towards the Slovak goal where Vladimir Neumann came in for Valuch after the half-time break. At 10:03 Shane Fox scored Team USA’s sixth goal. It was the last also thanks to Neumann’s great performance.

Sweden vs. Slovenia 4-3 (1-1, 2-1, 0-0, 1-1) Highlights<

While Sweden had an impressive start into the first game it was a bit more troublesome on Monday when Anze Lonear gave Slovenia the lead at 5:33.

With 1:39 left in the first period Jimmy Cronarp tied the game for Sweden. After an Emil Bejmo shot from the right side the puck bounced back from the end boards and Cronarp was at the right place on the other side to put the puck in backhand.

At 1:35 of the second period Slovenia regained the lead with a goal from Peter Frol after a side pass from Jure Sotlar. But again the Swedes found the right answer, this time with a Daniel O’Connor shot from the left face-off dot that beat busy Slovenian goaltender Tomaz Trelc on a power play.

With 42 seconds left before the half-time break Robin Sjoren gave Sweden the lead for the first time with a point shot during another man advantage for the Swedes, the third in the game.

After a scoreless third period it was against Sjoren who scored. 17 seconds into the fourth period he got his second goal after a forward pass from Rasmus Dahlberg Karlsson.

“It’s always nice to score but we play for the win and not for individual success,” Sjoren said. “It was a tough game. We were the more skilled team and created good scoring chances and had good goaltending.”

Mateuz Erman gave Slovenia new hope with 5:06 left in regulation time when he capitalized on a Slovenian power play with a shot from 17 metres. A penalty call again Bejmo for hooking Saso Rajsar in front of the Swedish net gave the Slovenes additional opportunities but the 4-3 lead for Sweden stayed until the final buzzer.


Australia vs. Hungary 7-2 (0-0, 3-1, 0-0, 4-1)

Australia earned its second win by beating Hungary 7-2. The Australians didn’t have the best start and Hungary’s Akos Kiss scored the first goal of the game at 4:16 of the second period but the Australians reacted with three goals within a span of 64 seconds from Jordan Gavin, Sean Jones and Steve Best.

After a scoreless third period Jones added two more goals for a hat trick and a 5-1 lead for Australia with just 5:31 left in regulation time.

Tamas Lencses made it 5-2 with a power-play marker for Hungary but Liam Jeffries and Michael Haynes added two more goals for Australia in the dying minutes of the game.

Great Britain vs. Austria 5-4 (0-1, 2-3, 2-0, 1-0)

Great Britain came back from a 3-0 deficit after 15 minutes of play to edge Austria 5-4.

Despite being outshot, Daniel Obersteiner, Harry Lange and Johannes Lins scored three unanswered goals for the Austria before the British managed to react. Goals from James Archer and Rob Shelton brought the British one goal away from a tie but Thomas Weiszensteiner made it 4-2 for Austria before the half-time break.

Lee Marrow and Karl Niamatali added two goals for Team GB to tie the game at four in the third period and 34 seconds into the fourth period Sam Jones scored the game-winning goal for the British.

Croatia vs. Argentina 7-0 (0-0, 1-0, 4-0, 2-0)

In a game between two winless teams on the opening day Croatia got an important 7-0 victory over Argentina.

Ivan Jankovic was the man of the match for the Croats with four goals including the first one for the 1-0 lead late in the second period after a tight and scoreless opening frame. The Croats improved after the half-time break with four goals in the third period.

Jankovic usually plays ice hockey for the U20 national team and for Medvescak Zagreb. After a season with Medvescak’s U20 team that competes in the Austrian junior league he hopes to make the senior team that plays in the Russian KHL.

Latvia vs. Bulgaria 18-1 (5-0, 6-0, 5-0, 2-1)

Last year’s promoted team Latvia had no trouble facing this year’s promoted team Bulgaria as they beat their opponent 18-1 and outshot them 50-3.

17-year-old defenceman Tomass Zeile led with four goals including a classic hat trick in the first period while Artjoms Ogorodnikovs scored three goals.

Kristian Semkov scored Bulgaria’s lonely marker for the 16-1 score early in the fourth quarter.

IIHF Worlds: Day 1 Wrapup


Slovakia vs. Canada 2-5 (1-0, 0-1, 0-2, 1-2) Highlights

Slovakia won the first period against Canada despite being outshot 10-2 but it wasn’t enough. The Canadians become stronger and rolled to a 5-2 win.

“I’m excited to be here and start with a win. We’re trying to get to know each other and it took a while to get it going,” said Dave Hammond, who scored two of Team Canada’s goals.

64 seconds into the game it was Slovakia’s Juraj Jurik, who opened the scoring on a two-on-one after a vertical pass from Tomas Mery. The Slovaks even got more chances on an upcoming power play but after succeeding on the penalty kill the Canadians improved their play. They missed out on three man advantages in the first period but scored the equalizer on the first power play of the second. Hammond netted the puck with a long shot after pass from Thomas Woods at 1:45.

Although the Canadians continued to dominate they had trouble bringing the puck past Slovak goalie Vladimir Neumann, who deservedly won the player of the game award for his team. It was mainly thanks to him that the score remained tied at one when the teams returned to the dressing rooms for the halftime break.

In the third period the game flow continued to go mainly in one direction and at 5:07 the Canadians got the first lead. After a shot from Adam Ross Neumann didn’t block the puck well enough and Brett Bulmer scored from the right side. Less than two minutes later Dave Hammond made it 3-1 with a shot from an acute angle. And in the third period while falling down James Isaacs managed to score another goal for the 4-1 lead in the fourth period which Richard Vanderhoek extended to 5-1 just 59 seconds later.

While playing with an extra attacker after a delayed penalty Jurik scored his second goal of the night with a shot Canadian goalie Brett Leggat didn’t entirely block with 2:10 left in regulation time but the Canadians were too strong to allow their opponent a comeback.

Slovenia vs. Finland 2-9 (2-3, 0-3, 0-2, 0-1) Highlights

Defending champion Finland had a strong start with a 9-2 victory over Slovenia. The Lions decided the game already in the second quarter and Tampere native Jimi Palanto scored a hat trick.

“I don’t get so many goals normally but most important is that the team wins,” Palanto said. “It was a good start into the tournament but it’s only one game and tomorrow is the next one.”

The 25-year-old opened the scoring on an odd-man situation in front of the Slovenian net at 2:04. Four minutes later the Finns kept the puck in the offensive zone on a power play and after a diagonal pass from Marko Virtala back to Sami Markkanen the latter made it 2-0 with a long shot.

Rok Jakopic gave Slovenia hope with his power-play goal from the crease at 8:59 and in the next shift Simon Zerdin had a similar chance but Sasu Hovi made the save.

The game-tying goal came with 28 seconds left in the period. After a puck battle in front of the crease Jura Sotlar shot the disc high into the net. But it was short-lived joy for the Slovenes because Markkanen beat Slovenian netminder Jura Pavlic with another long shot with seven seconds left in the period.

Palanto with his second goal and Lasse Lappalainen built a three-goal cushion with their second-period markers and with 90 seconds left before the halftime break Lappalainen added another goal for the 6-2 score.

The goal galore continued after the break. Team captain Jesse Saarinen scored the first goal of the third period at 1:30 with a shot from the right face-off dot. With 57 seconds left in the third period Juho Joki-Erkkila got the puck after a giveaway from Peter Frol. He passed to Palanto, who completed his hat trick for the 8-2 goal. Jouni Aalto’s shot into the top-right corner made it 9-2 with 3:19 left in regulation time.

USA vs. Germany 7-3 (2-0, 3-2, 1-0, 1-1) Highlights

Aiming at the third medal in three years after gold in 2013 and bronze in 2014, Team USA started the 2015 IIHF Inline Hockey World Championship with a convincing 7-3 win over Germany.

“It was a hard game. Germany played very well and made it hard for us to create scoring chances,” said Nathan Sigmund. It was him who was most successful in the offensive zone for Team USA with two markers.

The Americans created a two-goal cushion after the first period and never let the Germans come closer than that anymore.

Tyler Spezia opened the scoring at 6:44 after a horizontal pass from Kyle Novak and shortly after a power play Pat Cannone doubled the lead with a shot from near the goal line at 9:03.

In the second period Travis Noe netted the third goal for the Americans after skating through the right face-off circle but two minutes later Huba Sekesi brought Germany on the score board with a long shot. Nathan Sigmund restored the three-goal lead for the Americans at 5:50 of the second frame and less than two minutes later Matt White made it a 5-1 lead for Team USA.

Alexander Duck brought Germany back with a wraparound goal capitalizing on his own rebound after the puck had bounced back from the end boards.

After seven scoreless minutes in the second half of the game David Makowski scored the 6-2 goal for Team USA after a drop pass from Noe but with his second goal Duck cut the American lead to 6-3 on a power play.

The Germans didn’t manage to score another goal while Sigmund got his second of the opening day with 36 seconds left in regulation time.

Sweden vs. Czech Republic 4-5 (3-0, 0-1, 1-2, 0-2) Highlights

The Czech Republic opened the top division of the 2015 IIHF Inline Hockey World Championship with a 5-4 comeback win over Sweden. The Czechs for the first time gained the lead with Mikulas Zboril’s game-winner with two minutes left in the game.

Two former World Champion teams opened the top division of the 2015 IIHF Inline Hockey World Championship. The Swedes with new faces on the team did it with early goals but in the end the Czechs were the luckier team.

“It was my first match with the men’s national team,” 21-year-old defenceman Zboril, who previously played tournaments for the junior national inline hockey team and for third-tier ice hockey club HC Prerov, said.

“It is a big chance and pleasure for me to be here. I was lucky that I scored the goal but I’m happy about it.”

In the beginning there was not much evidence that the Czechs could gain points. After 13 seconds the Sweden already had the first chance. Carl Berglund deked a shot to the left and put the puck over the line on the other side of a defeated Czech goaltender Ondrej Haloda. At 1:54 the yellow-and-blue team already made it 2-0. After a deep pass from Daniel O’Connor it was Andreas Jensen, who succeeded in front of Haloda. And with 56 seconds left in the first period, Marcus Lissang extended the lead for a 3-0 period score.

The second period remained scoreless until the Czechs scored their first goal with 2:55 left before the halftime break. Ondrej Jirkuv first hit the crossbar but in the first video review in Inline Hockey World Championship history it could be seen that the puck was over the goal line. Midway through the third quarter David Hrazdira made it a 3-2 game when scoring on a rebound after Swedish goaltender Ludvig Engsund had blocked a Petr Obdrzalek shot. However, less than a minute later Jensen scored his second goal of the game on a breakaway.

Patrik Sebek’s goal from the goal line after a long pass from Michal Simo brought the Czechs back into the game with 55 seconds left in the period. And 74 seconds into the fourth period, David Hrazdira tied the game at four.

The period continued to go in one direction and with 1:59 left in regulation time Mikulas Zboril gave the Czechs the lead for the first time. He scored on a rebound after a blocked Jan Zahradnicek shot forcing the Swedes to use their time-out. But the Swedes didn’t manage to come back and will seek their first win tomorrow against Slovenia while the Czechs will play their next game against host Finland.


Argentina vs. Australia 3-6 (1-2, 0-1, 1-1, 1-2)

Australia beat Argentina 6-3 in a clash between the two southern hemisphere nations at this tournament.

Nicolas Chiaravalloti opened the scoring for Argentina at 2:08 but the Australian reacted with two quick goals from Steve Best and Jonathon Bremner for the 2-1 first-period lead for Australia which also got a second-period goal from Brenton Fitzgerald.

After the half-time break it was against the Argentines who scored first through Agustin Chiaravalloti but the Australians reacted with three unanswered goals en route to a 6-3 win.

Bulgaria vs. Great Britain 1-16 (1-0, 0-7, 0-5, 0-4)

Newly promoted Bulgaria won the first period against Great Britain after a Vasili Batchvarov goal but in the end it was a clear 16-1 decision in favour of the British who reacted with seven second-period markers.

Nathan Finney, Dan Hutchinson and Karl Niamatali all scored hat tricks; James Archer, Philip Hamer and Sam Jones all scored a pair of goals while Rob Shelton had one marker.

Croatia vs. Hungary 1-5 (1-0, 0-2, 0-2, 0-1)

Hungary opened its World Championship campaign with an important 5-1 victory in a neighbouring clash with higher-seeded Croatia.

Ivan Jankovic brought Croatia the lead after four minutes of play but Hungarian netminder Krisztian Budai didn’t allow another goal while Imre Peterdi and Akos Kiss each scored a pair of goals en route to the 5-1 win. Szilard Sandor also scored for Hungary.

Latvia vs. Austria 12-0 (3-0, 1-0, 3-0, 5-0)

Last year Latvia qualified for the first time for the Inline Hockey World Championship and started with losses until it won against unbeaten Austria. The players from the Baltic nation prepared for another tough game but it turned out to be a lopsided game as the Latvians blanked their opponent 12-0.

Roberts Lipsbergs scored four goals and had two assists while Miks Lipsberg scored two goals and had two assists. Rudolfs Maslovskis also netted two goals.


2015 IIHF World Championships are underway!

TAMPERE – The 16 teams have arrived to play at the 2015 IIHF Inline Hockey World Championship that starts on Sunday in Tampere with all games being streamed live and for free. It will be an event on home soil for defending champion Finland.

The event takes place in the second-largest urban area of Finland from 5th to 11th July. It’s only the second time after Kuopio in 2005 that the Inline Hockey World Championship takes place in Finland and the Finns couldn’t have selected a better year after winning the last edition one year ago in Pardubice, Czech Republic.

In inline hockey history five different countries have so far managed to win gold and they will be in the focus to do so again this year: the United States (6 titles), Sweden (5), Finland (4), Canada (2) and the Czech Republic (1).

Finland will open the event on 5th July against recently promoted Slovenia while Sweden will play the Czech Republic in the other Group A game. In Group B record champion United States will face Germany on the first day while last year’s silver medallist Canada will take on Slovakia.

After three days of round-robin play and a day off, the final round will begin on Thursday with the cross-over quarter-finals.

According to the same format the Division I will be played with the winner being promoted to the top division of the next Inline Hockey World Championship.

At the secondary rink Great Britain, Latvia, Austria and Bulgaria will compete in Group C, and Australia, Croatia, Hungary and Argentina in Group D. Bulgaria returned to Division I play after winning the European qualification tournament in Sofia against Israel, Serbia and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia while Argentina also won its qualification tournament at home in Buenos Aires against Hong Kong and Chile.

Storied hockey venue

Tampere is an experienced host for international hockey tournaments. The Tampere Ice Arena, also known as Hakametsa, was originally built to host the 1965 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship and was also one of the venues for the Ice Hockey World Championships in 1982, 1991, 1997 and 2003. Tampere was also the main venue of the 2007 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 World Championship and of the 1992 IIHF Ice Hockey Women’s World Championship.

The 7,300-seat arena, home of the ice hockey teams Ilves and Tappara, also has two additional rinks. The second rink will host the Division I tournament except for the medal games.

With the tournament taking place roughly two weeks after midsummer, participants can enjoy up to 22 hours of sunlight each day. The teams were welcomed in Tampere with up to 26°C and sunshine this week while they will soon have cooler temperatures on competition days.

Among the sights Tampere can offer is also an ice hockey museum with the Finnish Hall of Fame.

All 46 games streamed live

Like in the last three editions the 2015 IIHF Inline Hockey World Championship will be streamed live and for free. This time 46 games from both divisions and rinks will be broadcast on From the top division game highlights will also be made available.

Click here to access the live stream: Top Division, Division I

Teams registered

Argentina was the first team from abroad to arrive in Tampere already last Sunday while the last team arrived in the evening before the start of the tournament. The team rosters of all teams will be published tonight and can be found here: Top Division, Division I

New Rule Book online

Same as ice hockey also inline hockey got a new rule book for the 2015 season, which can be found on the tournament information page. The book has been completely restructured and redesigned to serve as a standalone rule book for inline hockey.

At the main arena where all top division games will take place a video goal judge system will be used for the first time.

Click here for the 2015 IIHF Inline Hockey World Championship page.