Germans get first win
Germans get first win
Slovakia heading for the relegation round after 6-3 loss
Leon Draisatl had a goal and four assists and Dominik Kahun scored the game winner as Germany won its first game of the 2013 U18 World Championship.
“We made it hard for ourselves, there were some good individual effort but we didn’t stay on our game plan and we gave them too many chances,” said head coach Jim Setters. “But the team showed character coming back from being down 2-1, and I think in the third period we noticed that their legs were getting tired from having played yesterday and we still felt pretty fresh.”
Germany’s top line of Draisatl, Kahun, and Parker Tuomie provided most of the offensive punch for Germany, accounting for four goals. Andreas Eder had the key insurance goal early in the third period that swung the momentum to the German side with a beautiful score, cutting into the Slovak zone from the right side and toe dragging the defender before firing the puck straight into the top corner.
"That win was huge for us, we wanted it really bad," said Draisatl. "The whole team did a great job to get the win and to make sure that we're playing in the quarter-finals."
Both teams came into the game winless, Germany through two and Slovakia through three. The sense of urgency was there for the Slovaks, who would be headed to the relegation round with a loss to the Germans.
Germany struck first with a three-on-two goal from Parker Tuomie, assisted by Draisatl and Dominik Kahun. But Slovakia answered right back following a turnover in the Slovak zone and resulted in a breakaway chance for Robert Lantosi, who beat goaltender Kevin Rich with a forehand deke to tie the game.
The Germans went back up at 9:22 when Draisatl skated into the zone and made a nice backhand pass to Kahun coming down the middle. With no one in front of him, Kahun was able to get the puck past goaltender Denis Godla with a backhand shot and put his team up 2-1.
Slovakia equalized with 3:55 left in the first. A slapshot from Adrian Sloboda missed the net and bounced off the boards, but was picked up by Lantosi beside the net, who was able to slot it in before Reich had a chance to get his pad across.
A failed clearing attempt by Reich led to Slovakia’s go-ahead goal in the second period, scored by David Soltes. With 6:34 remaining in the frame, a loose puck in the slot area was scooped up by Tuomie and fired into the roof of the net for his second goal of the game.
Then with a minute and five seconds left it was Draisatl with his fourth helper, taking the puck along the boards into the Slovak zone before making centering pass to Dominik Kahun who scored with a backhand shot, giving the lead back to the Germans for good going into the intermission.
Slovakia’s preliminary round is over and the team will await the fifth seed from Group A in the relegation round, while Germany will face Switzerland tomorrow. For the Germans, this will be the third year in a row that the team has reached the playoff round, and the team is showing improvement after scoring just two goals in the first two games.
“We played hard against Canada, we played hard tonight, but we have to play smarter,” said Setters. “The good thing though is we got this 8,000 pound barbell off our backs now and we can play and we’re in.”
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