Hockey

Canada opens world juniors with 16-2 rout of Germany

Dylan Cozens scored a hat trick and had three assists in Canada's 16-2 win over Germany to open the world junior men's hockey championship on Saturday in Edmonton.

9 German players unavailable due to positive COVID-19 tests

Dawson Mercer (20) and Ryan Suzuki (16) of Canada celebrate a goal against goaltender Jonas Gahr of Germany during their first preliminary-round match at the 2021 IIHF World Junior Championship at Rogers Place on Saturday in Edmonton. (Codie McLachlan/Getty Images)

Canada began shedding game rust with a 16-2 win over beleaguered Germany at the world junior men's hockey championship on Saturday in Edmonton.

Dylan Cozens of Whitehorse had a hat trick and three assists for the host country against an opponent ravaged by the COVID-19 virus.

Dawson Mercer, Philip Tomasino, Alex Newhook and Peyton Krebs each scored twice for Canada.

Kaiden Guhle, Ryan Suzuki, Jakob Pelletier, Thomas Harley and Connor McMichael also scored for the defending champions.

WATCH | Cozens leads the way for Canada:

Dylan Cozens records hat trick, six points in Canada's rout of Germany

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4 months ago
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Dylan Cozens had three goals and three assists to lead Canada's scoring in their 16-2 victory over a short-handed Germany squad. 0:29

John Peterka and Florian Elias countered for the Germans in Rogers Place devoid of spectators because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Nine German players were isolating in hotel rooms Saturday because of positive tests for the virus upon arrival in Edmonton.

Germany played 14 skaters — nine forwards and five defencemen — for a second game in as many days after falling 5-3 to Finland on Christmas Day.

The Germans couldn't run anything resembling a real practice until the day before their first game.

Canada exploited Germany's defensive and goaltending mistakes borne of mental and physical fatigue.

"We weren't too focused on the score," Cozens said. "We were just focused on playing the right way.

"It's our first game of the tournament. We've got to establish our good habits

"It's a tough spot they're in. They're down a lot of numbers and just coming out of quarantine. It does suck for them for sure."

Canada's 16 goals in a single game was two off the record of 18 set in both 1985 and 1986.

Canada faces Slovakia (1-0) in Pool A on Sunday.

Jonas Gahr replaced German starter Arno Tiefensee after one period and allowed 12 goals on 33 shots.

Tiefensee gave up four goals on 11 shots following a 45-save outing versus Finland the previous day.

Canada's Devon Levi stopped eight of nine shots over two periods for the win. Dylan Garand played the third turning away five of six.

WATCH | Canada's Braden Schneider gets game misconduct for check to head:

Braden Schneider ejected from Canada's world juniors opener against Germany

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4 months ago
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Canadian Braden Schneider was given a game misconduct for this hit to the head of Germany forward Jan-Luca Schumacher. 0:54

Canada's Braden Schneider was ejected before the game was nine minutes old.

The defenceman's shoulder check caught Jan-Luca Schumacher's head for a major penalty and game misconduct.

US hammers Austria 

Matthew Boldy scored a hat-trick, while Trevor Zegras added a pair of goals as the United States defeated Austria 11-0. Alex Turcotte also had three assists in the win.

Drew Helleson, John Farinacci, Brendan Brisson, Brett Berard and Sam Colangelo also scored in the victory. United States goalie Dustin Wolf made 10 saves in the win.

The Americans will next play Tuesday against the Czech Republic while the Austrians will play Sweden Monday.

WATCH | USA records 11-0 win over Austria:

Zegras, Boldy shine as USA walk over Austria at world juniors

Sports

4 months ago
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Trevor Zegras had four points and Matthew Boldy tacked on a hat trick in USA's 11-0 win over Austria at the world juniors. 0:26

Sweden thumps Czechs

Sweden opened Pool B with a 7-1 thumping of the  on Saturday.

The top four teams in each pool advance to the Jan. 2 quarter-finals, followed by semifinals Jan. 4 and the medal games Jan. 5.

Canada's tournament prep was interrupted by a 14-day quarantine midway through selection camp because a pair of players tested positive for COVID-19.

WATCH | Sweden tops Czech Republic:

Soderblom goes between-the-legs in Sweden's big win over Czech Republic

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4 months ago
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Elmer Soberblom showed off his hands in tight as he went between-the-legs to extend Sweden's lead against the Czech Republic. 0:29

Before Saturday's opener, the majority of the Canadian players hadn't played a meaningful game in months because of the pandemic.

Up 4-1 by the end of the first period, it became clear the game would serve as a rust-shedder for Canada and an ordeal for the Germans.

Canada's goal celebrations became more muted as the score became lopsided, but head coach Andre Tourigny said his team couldn't afford to step off the gas.

"We're not a team who played 15 games together or 30 games before the camp," Tourigny said.

"Most of those guys have four intrasquad games and one pre-competition and one competition game. We need to get better every day.

"It could have been two hundred to one. It's not about that. It was about us playing and preparing our team and our play to move forward in the tournament."

"We have no time to waste."

Canada overwhelmed the tiring Germans scoring seven times on Gahr in the second period.

"This happens when you are not mentally and physically ready and able to play on this kind of level with this intensity and speed," German head coach Tobias Abstreiter said.

"We had no tools, no battle-level, nothing to compete against Canada's strong game. We gave up in a way and this is what I cannot accept."

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