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Live: Finland vs. Switzerland


But first, an update from Niagara. The Czech Republic finished its tournament with a 5-2 victory over Slovakia in the last relegation round.

Finland shooter 1: Pulkkinen stopped by Conz.

Swiss shooter 1: Niederreiter stopped by Ortio.

Finland shooter 2: Haula goes backhand, but loses control and the puck goes wide.

Swiss shooter 2: Pestoni comes in sloooow to the right, runs out of real estate and is stopped by Ortio.

Finland shooter 3: Donskoi can't beat Conz, either. The Swiss goalie stayed with a nice move and got a glove on the shot. 

Swiss shooter 3: Sven Bartschi stoned by Ortio. To extra shooters we go.

Swiss shooter 4: Yannick Herren gets the call and scores. He goes top shelf on the backhand. Think Ales Kotalik in the shootout.

Finland shooter 4: The Finns go back to Pulkkinen, but he loses the puck on the way in and Conz pushes it away. Game over.

The Swiss win, 3-2, in a shootout. Good night.


9:44 p.m.: Here we go.

3:56 left: Conz freezes it next to his right post. No real good chances yet for either side.

2:43 left: Great chance for Swiss defenseman Romain Loeffel coming off the bench, but he he can't find the net with a rocket from the point.

1:03 left: Save of the game by Conz, who gets a stick on Joonas Nattinen's shot. Nattinen was alone in front. Amazing save by Conz.

:15.1 left: Timeout, Finland.

9:51 p.m.: To a shootout we go.

Third Period

9:12 p.m.: Welcome back.

16:20 left: Finland to the power play. Dario Trutmann to the box for holding. Updates will be a little less frequent in the third period as we've got a story to file for an early deadline.

14:05 left: The Swiss parade to the penalty box continues. This time it's Benjamin Antonietti for high-sticking. The last Finns' power play looked good, so we'll see what they can do with this one.

12:16 left: Someone has to do something with all these power play chances, right? It's Switzerland's turn with the man advantage, as Henri Tuominen goes to the box for charging.

9:50 left: Make it power play No. 3 for Finland this period. Swiss defender Samuel Guerra in the box for holding.

6:59 left: The best power play yet for Finland still ends without a goal. The best chance came when Joonas Donskoi couldn't get his stick on a perfect cross-ice pass from Pulkkinen with a yawning net staring at him. Shots are 28-18 for the Swiss.

4:42 left: Total domination this period everywhere except on the scoreboard for Finland. Overtime looming.

:3.2 seconds left: Overtime about here, despite a period which featured five power plays.

9:40 p.m.: And there it is. Overtime upcoming. Five minutes, if no winner, then a shootout.

Second Period

8:25 p.m.: We're back.

18:34 left: Two real good saves by Ortio, the second on Inti Pestoni, to keep it 2-1.

17:00 left: Switzerland penalty to Ryan McGregor, who sounds like he could be from Lancaster. Two minutes for interference.

15:31 left: Power play over as Joel Armia takes a lazy tripping penalty. But, hey, four-on-four play is fun!

14:37 left: Nieddereiter cashes in on the power play. Letting a wrist shot go from the top of the right circle that gets tipped and finds its way past Ortio. Tied up, 2-2.

13:51 left: Ortio keeps it that way, stopping Pestoni on a breakaway. The Finnish goalie stuck with it all the way and made a great blocker save.

10:46 left: Haas, the Swiss forward, goes crashing head-first into the boards, but thankfully he's ok. The hit earns Finnish forward Miikka Salomaki a two-minute minor for checking from behind and a 10-minute misconduct.

6:46 left: Long period of play with no whistles, but no goals. Shots are 20-7 for Switzerland, who's had the better of the play in this 20 minutes. Blooper time on the HSBC scoreboard, Mike Harrington.

6:38 left: Power play for the Finns, as Swiss forward Samuel Walser goes off for interference.

4:29 left: Power play over, and it was pretty ugly for the Finns.

2:36 left: This is the second meeting between these two teams. Finland won, 4-0, in the preliminary round. Much better showing for the Swiss this time. Shots are 21-10 right now.

8:53 p.m.: End of 2, tied at 2. I can't imagine the Sabres are going to be happy with this ice when they get home. Maybe a few days without games will make it better, but the puck simply won't stop bouncing around.

First Period

7:38 p.m.: Game on.

19:38 left: That didn't take long. Teemu Pulkkinen is left uncovered in front of Swiss goalie Benjamin Conz, and he bangs home a rebound for a 1-0 lead just 22 seconds into the game. Assists went to Erik Haula and Iiro Pakarinen.

17:04 left: Tie game! Tie game (trying to wake the crowd up)! Swiss forward Inti Pestoni knocks in a rebound, as well, after Finnish goalie Joni Ortio stopped Benjamin Antonietti's shot. Nice job by Swiss forward Gaeten Haas tying up both Finnish defensemen.

12:03 left: Break in the action. Shots are 5-3, Switzerland. Ortio was wiped out on the Swiss' last trip inside the Finland zone, and was none too happy about it. No penalties yet.

10:59 left: Scratch that. First penalty of the game goes to Finland's Tommi Kivisto for interference.

8:59 left: Power play over. Good puck movement, but no great chances for the Swiss.

7:43 left: Great cross-ice pass (sorry I missed by whom) gave Pulkkinen a great chance with an empty net, but he fanned. Still 1-1. Shots are 6-3 in favor of the Swiss.

5:03 left: This tournament has been great to cover, but it would be even better if it was played four-on-four. We just had two minutes of that here. No goals, but great chances at both ends.

3:23 left: Swiss back on the power play. Finland's Julius Junttila in the box for hooking.

1:57 left: The power play backfires, as Finland takes a 2-1 lead on a short-handed breakaway goal by Haula. The goal was set up by a perfect pass off the boards by Teemu Tallberg. Haula got Conz down, then went top-shelf on to left side of the net. A beauty. Sami Vatanen also picked up an assist on the goal.

8:08 p.m.: End of the first period. Finland leads, 2-1. Shots are 13-6 in favor of Switzerland. Swiss star Nino Niederreiter, the fifth overall pick in June's NHL draft by the New York Islanders, had a good chance off a faceoff with eight seconds left, but his shot went just wide.

HSBC announcement: Tickets remain available for tomorrow's bronze-medal game between the U.S. and Sweden. Will be interesting to see what kind of crowd that game draws. It's a 3:30 p.m. start.


Hello again from my home away from home, HSBC Arena. The atmosphere here tonight is, um, different than USA-Canada last night.

That's ok, though. Switzerland and Finland will meet in just a few minutes in the fifth-place game. Earlier today, Norway defeated Germany, 3-1, in a relegation game at Niagara's Dwyer Arena. Those two teams, however, have finished third and fourth in the relegation round, meaning they have to participate in the Division I (secondary) event in 2012. Slovakia and the Czech Republic, which are playing in the other relegation game at Dwyer, remain eligible for next year's event in Calgary/Edmonton.

---Jay Skurski


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