SWEDEN INTO WJAC SEMIFINALS AFTER BLANKING CANADA WEST
LANGLEY, B.C. – Mathias Israelsson turned aside all 37 shots he faced for Sweden’s second shutout in as many days and the power play scored both goals as the Swedes moved into the semifinals at the 2011 World Junior A Challenge with a 2-0 win over Canada West on Tuesday night.
Mathiasson’s shutout follows a clean sheet by Oscar Dansk in Monday’s 1-0 win over the United States. Overall, Swedish goaltenders are a perfect 81-for-81 through two games, and will get two days of rest before Friday’s semis.
Erik Karlsson scored on the power play eight minutes into the first period and Jesper Pettersson added the insurance goal with the man advantage early in the third as the Swedes – who had never won a preliminary round game in their two previous WJAC appearances – claimed first place in Group A.
Sean Maguire (Powell River, B.C./Powell River, BCHL) was solid in the Canada West goal, making 28 saves, but was the hard-luck loser thanks to Israelsson’s performance.
Sweden will not see the ice at the Langley Events Centre again until Friday, when it faces a to-be-determined opponent in the semifinals, while Canada West closes preliminary round play Wednesday night (7:30 p.m. PT) in a battle for second place against the United States.