Hockey

World juniors roundup: Czechs stun Russia to delight home crowd in tournament opener

Jan Jenik had a goal and an assist as the host Czech Republic opened the world junior hockey championship with a 4-3 win over Russia on Thursday.

Sweden downs Finland in OT, while Switzerland defeats Kazakhstan to lead Group A

Czech Republic players celebrate their 4-3 tournament-opening win over Russia at the world junior championship on Thursday. (David Josek/Associated Press)

Jan Jenik had a goal and an assist as the host Czech Republic opened the world junior hockey championship with a 4-3 win over Russia on Thursday.

The 19-year-old Jenik — an Arizona Coyotes prospect playing for the Ontario Hockey League's Hamilton Bulldogs — scored what turned into the winner with just under three minutes to go in the second while on a 5-on-3 power play.

Simon Kubicek, Jan Mysak and Matej Blumel also found the back of the net for the Czech Republic (1-0-0), which finished seventh in 2019 after bowing out in the quarterfinals against the United States.

Lukas Dostal made 33 saves for the win in the Group B matchup.

Yego Zamula had a pair of goals and Vasili Podkolzin also scored for Russia (0-1-0), last year's bronze medallists.

Yaroslav Askarov allowed four goals in two periods of work to take the loss for the Russians. Amir Miftakhov came in to play the third.

Boston Bruins prospect Jakub Lauko of the Czech Republic injured his knee in the opening minute of the game and didn't return.

Later, Canada plays its first Group B game against the United States, and Finland faces Sweden in a Group A tilt.

Swiss topple Kazakhstan 

Matthew Verboon scored twice while Gian-Marco Wetter potted the eventual winner midway through the third as Switzerland toppled Kazakhstan.

Jeremi Gerber and Joel Salzberger also scored for the Swiss (1-0-0) in the Group A matchup.

Maxim Musorov struck twice and Ruslan Demin added the other for Kazakhstan (0-1-0).

Sweden edges defending champs

Alexander Holtz scored in overtime after Nils Hoglander potted a lacrosse-style goal from behind the net in regulation as Sweden edged the defending gold medallists.

Samuel Fagemo rounded out the offence for the Swedes (1-0-0) in their Group A opener. Hugo Alnefelt had 23 saves.

Patrik Puistola and kristian Tanus had goals for Finalnd (0-0-1). Justus Annunen stopped 45-of-48 shots.

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