Lundqvist stops 36 in Sweden's 5-3 win

Swedes complete qualifying round by beating Czechs in Quebec City

Sunday, 05.11.2008 / 10:13 PM / News
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Lundqvist stops 36 in Sweden\'s 5-3 win
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Highlights from May 8 Sweden-Denmark Game Watch




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Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist picked up his second victory in three games at the 2008 World Championship tournament on Sunday, helping Sweden beat the Czech Republic 5-3.

Henrik Lundqvist
Lundqvist stopped 36 of 39 Czech shots, keeping Sweden in the game long enough for the Swedes to run away with the victory on the strength of a three-goal third period. The Swedes had entered the third period in a 2-2 tie after Ales Kotalik beat Lundqvist during a 4-on-3 power-play opportunity at 18:26 of the second.

The Swedes took the lead at 1:14 of the third on a goal by Mattias Weinhandl, but Tomas Fleischmann of the Washington Capitals came right back to tie it for the Czechs at 3-3 just over eight minutes later. Nashville draft pick Patric Hornqvist, 21, then delivered the winner for Sweden when he scored with 4:53 left in the third period, and Calgary's Marcus Nilson delivered an empty-netter -- his second goal of the game -- to seal the victory.

Michal Rozsival
Sweden's big win was a setback for a Czech team that includes Lundqvist's Rangers teammate Michal Rozsival. Again paired on defense with Filip Kuba, Rozsival registered one shot on goal in the first period and saw 20:02 of ice time.

In beating the Czechs, the Swedes moved into a three-way tie for second place with the Czechs and Switzerland. All four of the top teams in Group E, including first-place Russia, have clinched berths in the medal round's quarterfinals. Regardless of the Switzerland-Russia result on Monday, the Swedes will enter the quarterfinals with the group's No. 3 seed, while the Czechs would hold the No. 4 seed.

Also on Sunday, Finland beat Team USA 3-2 after coming back from a 2-0 deficit with three third-period goals. Rangers center Brandon Dubinsky skated on Team USA's No. 2 line with David Booth and Patrick Kane for the second consecutive game.

Brandon Dubinsky
Dubinsky, making his international hockey debut in Halifax, had one shot on goal in the second period and finished with a minus-1 rating in 9:43 of ice time.

Minnesota's Mikko Koivu, the younger brother of Montreal captain Saku Koivu, scored the game-winner with 3:50 remaining in regulation. His goal followed tallies from Nashville's Ville Koistinen and Anaheim's Teemu Selanne, who tied the game at 10:44 of the third.

Boston's Phil Kessel and Edmonton's Tom Gilbert had the Team USA goals in the second period. The game saw a total of 202 penalty minutes, including 106 against Team USA, but most of those minutes resulted from a fight that erupted after the final buzzer.

The loss moved the U.S. team's record to 2-2-0, keeping them in third place in Group F, where the top four teams will go to the quarterfinals. Team USA is back in action on Monday when it faces Norway (1-2-1)  in its final qualifying-round game.