Sweden, Finland advance to World Junior semifinals

Sweden celebrates the win over Latvia during IIHF World Junior Hockey Championship quarterfinal action in Edmonton on Wednesday August 17, 2022. (Jason Franson/THE CANADIAN PRESS)

EDMONTON — Captain Emil Andrae scored the game winner and Sweden took a 2-1 victory over Latvia in quarterfinal action at the world junior hockey championship Wednesday.

Isak Rosen opened the scoring for Sweden 16:44 into the first period and Gustavs Ozolins buried the equalizer for Latvia at the end of the second.

Latvia’s Martins Lavins was tossed from the game 89 seconds into the third for a check to the head, but his teammates killed off a five-minute major penalty to keep the score level at 1-1.

Andrae broke the deadlock 9:49 into the third with a long shot through traffic.

Jesper Wallstedt stopped 12 shots for Sweden (4-1-0) and Bruno Bruveris made 25 saves for Latvia (1-2-1).

Earlier in the day, Roby Jarventie scored a pair of power-play goals and added two assists as Finland defeated Germany 5-2 in another quarterfinal.

Jarventie’s first goal at 14:48 of the first period gave Finland a 3-1 lead and ended up as the game winner.

After Germany’s Bennet Rossmy scored his second goal of the game in the second period to make it 3-2, Jarventie restored Finland’s lead 6:22 into the third with Yannick Proske off for hooking.

Roni Hirvonen and Joel Maatta also scored power-play goals as Finland went 4-for-6 with the man advantage. Finland’s power-play unit has been lethal throughout the tournament, firing at a 59 per-cent clip (13-for-22).

Kasper Simontaival opened the scoring for Finland with an even-strength goal 3:37 into the contest.

Leevi Merilainen made 19 saves for Finland (4-1-0) while Florian Bugl stopped 17 shots for Germany (2-3-0).

Canada (4-0-0) is set to face Switzerland (1-3-0) in another quarterfinal later Wednesday.

The Canadians are captained by Anaheim Ducks’ prospect Mason McTavish, who leads the tournament in scoring with seven goals and six assists.

The Swiss clinched a spot in the quarterfinals with a 3-2 win over Austria on Monday, marking their lone win of the tournament so far.

The reigning champion Americans (4-0-0) are take on the Czechs (1-2-1) in the last quarterfinal Wednesday night.

Canada took silver in the 2021 tournament, which was held at Edmonton’s Rogers Place without fans due to COVID-19 restrictions.

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