In their second Group match, Canada defeated Slovakia 6-3. They overcame a pair of two-goal deficits. Undisciplined penalties put them behind. The Slovaks cashed in on two five-on-three’s. After receiving a check to the head from ejected Canadian forward J.C. Lipon, Tomas Mikus returned on the next shift and finished off a nice pass for a power play goal that put his team ahead 2-0. Earlier, teammate Marko Dano steered home a rebound to open the scoring. Dano had a big day, finishing with two goals and an assist in a losing effort.
Ryan Strome (NYI) got Canada on the board with his first of the tournament in the second. He free wheeled into the slot and beat Adam Nagy with a quick wrister. The Islander prospect added a second marker on a breakaway later. Lipon’s hit wasn’t the only controversial play. Teammate Anthony Camara leveled Patrik Luza with a thunderous check that knocked him out. He was taken out on a stretcher. Camara’s big hit was ruled a charging major, giving him the rest of the day off. Handed another two-man advantage, the Slovaks cashed in when Dano’s one-timer eluded Malcolm Subban (Bos). Ironically, Strome was in the box for a trip that gave Slovakia the opportunity.
Trailing 3-1, Canada rallied. Goals from Morgan Rielly and Ty Rattie tied it up. Slovakia also lost discipline, allowing the Canadians to storm back. Rielly scored on a one-timer and Rattie tipped home Xavier Ouellet’s (Det) pass. Ouellet also set up another when his wrist shot from the left point was neatly deflected in by Mark Schiefele (WPG). A very skilled play that proved to be the winner.
Captain Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (Edm) and Strome scored in the third, making it five unanswered for Canada. Nugent-Hopkins took a pass from Jonathan Huberdeau (Fla) in tight and slipped a backhand past Nagy increasing to 5-3. Strome got behind the Slovakian defense for a breakaway, deking and going five-hole for his second of the day.
Canada improved to 2-0 in Group play. Slovakia is 0-1-0-1.