Canada reaches gold-medal game

Canada has earned home-ice advantage for the final of the Memorial of Ivan Hlinka under-18 hockey tournament — but fan support may be hard to come by.

Canada 9 Czech Republic 0

BRECLAV, Czech Republic — Canada has earned home-ice advantage for the final of the Memorial of Ivan Hlinka under-18 hockey tournament — but fan support may be hard to come by.

The Canadians laid a 9-0 beating on the host Czech Republic on Thursday to clinch top spot in Pool A with a 3-0 record. The defending champions will face Russia on Saturday in a rematch of last year’s gold-medal game, a 6-3 Canada victory.

The Russians’ 8-4 win over Finland earlier Thursday meant that the Canadians needed to beat the Czechs by eight or more goals to secure home-ice for the final. Anything less, and Canada would have had to travel nearly 100 kilometres to Piestany, Slovakia for the gold-medal game.

The Canadians accomplished the feat, scoring twice in the first 1:11 and cruising the rest of the way in front of a decidedly pro-Czech crowd at the Alcaplast Arena.

“We knew that the crowd was going to give the Czechs a little bit of an edge,” said forward Tyler Toffoli. “We got a goal on the first shift, and a goal on the second shift, so we kind of took the crowd out of it.”

The Red Deer Rebels are represented by defenceman Alex Petrovic on Team Canada.

The quick start was exactly what head coach Bob Boughner was looking for. After ripping into his team between the first and second periods of Wednesday’s win over Switzerland, Boughner pointed to the Czech result as proof the players were paying attention.

“I think (the coaches) made our point after the first period (Wednesday),” said Boughner. “They knew we weren’t happy, we were upset about how we came out again.

“(Thursday), we talked about breaking the game down into three individual games, and wanted to win the first game. And that’s what we did.”

Jeffrey Skinner of the OHL’s Kitchener Rangers led the way for Canada with a pair of goals, giving him four in the past two games. Toffoli, of the OHL’s Ottawa 67’s, added a goal and two assists, while John McFarland of the OHL’s Sudbury Wolves scored for the third game in a row.

Tyler Seguin of the OHL’s Plymouth Whalers, Brock Beukeboom of the OHL’s Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds, Jordan Weal of the WHL’s Regina Pats, Jaden Schwartz of the SJHL’s Notre Dame Hounds and Sean Couturier of the QMJHL’s Drummondville Voltigeurs also scored in the win.

Boughner was encouraged at the number of names on the scoresheet.

“It was nice,” said Boughner.

“We had the scoring spread out amongst all four lines, and a couple of (defencemen) chipped in. That’s important, to get everybody feeling good about themselves, and getting to where I can roll my bench. Hopefully that’ll help us energy-wise for the next game.”

Louis Dominigue of the QMJHL’s Moncton Wildcats stopped 23 shots to earn the shutout.

Just Posted

Parenting: Every woman will have a different pregnancy experience

Wife whose hormones are unbalanced can be unpleasant experience

Men posing as repo men attempt to steal vehicle in Red Deer County

Two men attempted to steal a utility vehicle from a Red Deer… Continue reading

Red Deerian spreads kindness with one card at a time

One Red Deerian wants to combat bullying by spreading kindness in the… Continue reading

Bowden baby in need of surgery

“Help for Alexis” Go Fund Me account

PHOTO: First Rider bus safety in Red Deer

Central Alberta students learned bus safety in the Notre Dame High School… Continue reading

WATCH: Annual Family Picnic at Central Spray and Play

Blue Grass Sod Farms Ltd. held the Annual Family Picnic at the… Continue reading

Woman has finger ripped off at West Edmonton Mall waterslide

SASKATOON — A Saskatchewan woman says she lost a finger after her… Continue reading

Uncertainty looms over Canada’s cannabis tourism, but ambitions are high

TORONTO — Longtime marijuana advocate Neev Tapiero is ready for the cannabis-driven… Continue reading

Feds mulling safeguards to prevent ‘surge’ of cheap steel imports into Canada

OTTAWA — The federal government extended an olive branch of sorts to… Continue reading

Ontario govt caps off summer session by passing bill to cut Toronto council size

TORONTO — The Ontario government passed a controversial bill to slash the… Continue reading

Updated:Italian bridge collapse sends cars plunging, killing 26

MILAN — A 51-year-old highway bridge in the Italian port city of… Continue reading

Saudi Arabia spat affecting Canadians embarking on hajj, community members say

TORONTO — Members of Canada’s Muslim community say recent tensions between Ottawa… Continue reading

Tug carrying up to 22,000 litres of fuel capsizes in Fraser River off Vancouver

VANCOUVER — The smell of diesel filled the air as crews worked… Continue reading

Nebraska executes first inmate using fentanyl

LINCOLN, Neb. — Nebraska carried out its first execution in more than… Continue reading

Most Read

Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month