Canada battles for gold

SCOTT FISHER, QMI AGENCY

, Last Updated: 10:35 AM ET

SASKATOON — Marco Scandella grew up dreaming of scoring the winning goal for Canada.

Yesterday, he lived it out.

Scandella's second-period shorthanded tally stood up as the winner as Canada rolled over the Swiss 6-1 in the world junior semifinal.

“When I was about eight years old, I started watching the world juniors every year,” Scandella said. “You'd always sit down and watch it with your parents.

“We’d go out and play pond hockey in the park, and I'd score the game-winner.”

Canada also got a pair of goals from Taylor Hall and singles from Jordan Eberle, Brayden Schenn and Stefan Della-Rovere in last night's semifinal win.

The victory puts Canada in tomorrow’s gold-medal game (TSN) against the U.S.

Leading 1-0 in the second period, it was Scandella’s goal that got Canada rolling.

The Swiss managed to hang around long enough to beat the Russians 3-2 in overtime in the quarterfinal and Scandella said his teammates weren’t interested in suffering a similar fate.

“The goalie had been really good up until then,” Scandella said of Swiss puckstopper Benjamin Conz, who made 50 saves against Russia.

“It gave us a cushion and then Taylor Hall put another one in (1:45 later).

“We weren’t worried, but we saw what happened to Russia and we definitely didn’t want that to happen to us.”

The Canadians dominated the opening period, outshooting the Swiss 19-6, but were only able to beat goaltender Conz once for a 1-0 lead.

Ryan Ellis’ powerplay point shot deflected to the side of the net to Eberle, and the Edmonton Oilers prospect put it in the roof for his sixth of the tournament.

Canada had a number of great opportunities to build on its lead.

Hall had a partial breakaway turned aside by Conz and Nazem Kadri’s rebound landed on top of the net.

Greg Nemisz, who is still without a point in the tournament, was staring at an open net in the final minute of the period, but Swiss defender Jeffrey Fuglister deflected the shot to take away a sure goal.

But Scandella’s shorty breathed life into the team in the second period.

“I saw an opportunity to skate up ice,” Scandella said. “(Gabriel Bourque) made a perfect pass.

“I didn’t really know what move to do, but I put it on net and watched it trickle in.

“It was unreal.”

Hall made it 3-0 less than two minutes later and the Swiss took a timeout to regroup.

The visitors got on the board — their first goal against Canada in 92:27 over two games — on the powerplay when Mauro Jorg put a screened shot past Jake Allen’s blocker.

Schenn tried to make a centring pass, had the puck end up back on his stick and then lifted a backhander into the top corner tp put Canada up 4-1 early in the third period.

The Canucks rounded out the scoring late in the third as Della-Rovere and Hall, with his second, made it a 6-1 final.

Team Canada may have lost defenceman Travis Hamonic, who absorbed a check from behind with less than a minute to play.

Fuglister was given a major and game misconduct.

The final shots were 44-21 for Canada.


Videos

Photos