Finland Downs Latvia, Germany Tops Slovakia at Hockey Worlds | Sports News

 Finland Downs Latvia, Germany Tops Slovakia at Hockey Worlds | Sports News

TAMPERE, Finland (AP)-Host Finland bounced back from a first period scare to beat Latvia 2-1 for their second win in two games of the ice hockey world championship on Saturday.

Mikael Granlund scored the winner in a power play with 2:52 left in the final period of the Group B game in Tampere. Rudolfs Balcers outscored Latvia 1-0 in the opening period then Sakari Manninen equalized for power play in the middle frame. Manninen added an assist to Granlund’s goal.

Finland, runner-up in last year’s tournament, closed out Norway 5-0 on Friday while Latvia lost to the United States, 4-1.

Germany came back from losing to Canada the previous day by beating Slovakia 2-1 in Group A in Helsinki. Matthias Plachta and Leonhard Pfoderl gave the Germans a 2-0 advantage with Kristian Pospisil answering the Slovakian’s lone goal.

In Group B, Sweden have only three lines available to open against Austria as the team awaits the NHL playoffs results to complete the roster along with players from the Swedish league, whose playoffs only ended on Thursday.

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Joel Kellman, Max Friberg and Joakim Nordstrom each contributed a goal to a 3-1 win against a team that with France replaced the Russian and Belarusian squads.

In their opening, the Czech Republic outscored Britain 5-1 in another Group B match. Matej Blumel led the Czechs with two goals and an assist.

Also in Group A, Joachim Blichfeld scored a hat trick and Nikolaj Ehlers had three assists for Denmark to start the tournament by beating Kazakhstan 9-1.

Three goals more after the first period, with Jonas Siegenthaler assisting everyone, propelled Switzerland to a 5-2 win over Italy in their first Group A game.

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