Canada East and West advance to World Jr A Challenge semis

The Canadian Press

11/11/2010 11:10:23 PM

PENTICTON, B.C. -- Canada West joined Canada East in the semifinals at the World Junior A Challenge with Thursday's 3-2 win over Sweden.

Tied 2-2 after two periods, Nolan Kaiser's goal at 5:18 of the third was the difference for Canada West.

Earlier Thursday, Canada East advanced to Saturday's semifinals with a 4-3 win over Russia.

Canada West will take on the U.S. in the semis, while Canada East faces Switzerland in the tournament for Tier 2 players aged 16 to 19.

After a scoreless first between Canada West and Sweden, Linus Hultstrom put the Scandinavians ahead at 8:32 of the second on the power play.

Canada West got that one back just over a minute later, as Dylan Walchuck beat Swedish goalie Jonas Gunnarsson. The Canadians took the lead at 19:08 on a two-man advantage, but Sebastian Dyk made sure the teams went to the locker-rooms deadlocked, scoring shorthanded with 12 seconds left in the period.

Matthew Krahn finished with 31 saves for Canada West, while Gunnarsson stopped 19 shots at the other end.

Earlier Thursday, Matthew Peca and Evan Rodrigues scored 42 seconds apart late in the second period as Canada East survived a late rally to beat Russia.

Matt Chiarantano and Zach Hyman also scored for Canada East.

The Canadian side caught an early break to open the scoring, as Chiarantano's short-handed clearing attempt from his own zone hit a partition on the glass and skipped past Russian goaltender Denis Perevozchikov.

Hyman made it 2-0 early in the second period, slipping a backhand behind Perevozchikov. Peca and Rodrigues then gave Canada East a seemingly commanding lead with goals less than a minute apart to chase Perevozchikov.

But the Russian comeback started at 17:53 of the middle period with a Roman Konkov goal, and Mikhail Grigorenko scored 26 seconds into the third period and again at 8:20 to make it 4-3.

Canada East netminder Jordan Ruby stole the show in the late going, making a number of game-saving stops. He finished with 35 saves.