Sam Steel (Sherwood Park. Alta/Regina Pats, WHL) rips a shot past the Slovakia netminder in Canada’s 6-0 win at the 2018 IIHF World Junior Championship on Wednesday. Photo courtesy of Hockey Canada

Canada shuts out Slovakia at IIHF World Junior Hockey Championship

Kelowna Rockets assistant captain and Team Canada captain earns one assist

Canada heads outside for its next preliminary round game with a 2-0 record as they prepare to take on the host United States on Friday afternoon in the first outdoor game in IIHF World Junior Championship history.

“It’s about the environment too, not just the ice. We want our guys to feel the ice, the stadium but we don’t want it to become too much of a big thing when we get there. We’ll be short (with practice), but we will prepare our game,” said head coach Dominique Ducharme on how the team is preparing for the outdoor game which will take place at New Era Field in Orchard Park, New York, home of the NFL’s Buffalo Bills.

Related: Canada wins opener at IIHF World Junior Hockey Championship

On Wednesday, Colton Point (North Bay, Ont./Colgate University, ECAC) backstopped Canada’s National Junior Team to a 6-0 win over Slovakia turning aside 20 shots.

“I felt good, smooth, ready and confident. The guys played great in front of me, they’re unbelievably good at puck management and all things that go into being a good team. They make my job a million times easier. I don’t think I had a back door play once today and every shot I took was in front of me, on my stick and the guys make my job a lot easier than it could be,” said Point.

Captain Dillon Dubé (Cochrane, Alta./Kelowna Rockets, WHL) had one assist while the two other players from B.C., including Penticton Vees alumni Dante Fabbro (Coquitlam, B.C./Boston University, HE) and Cal Foote (Kelowna, B.C./Kelowna Rockets, WHL) did not record any points.

Related: Rockets’ Dube named Team Canada captain

Sam Steel (Sherwood Park, Alta./Regina, WHL) needed just 2:39 to open the scoring, banging in a loose puck after a point shot from Cale Makar (Calgary, Alta./University of Massachusetts, HE) pinballed to the side of the net.

That was it for scoring in the first period despite Canada holding a 13-6 advantage in shots on goal.

The Canadians pulled away in the second, finding the back of the net three times in just over nine minutes to take control.

Jordan Kyrou (Toronto, Ont,/Sarnia, OHL) doubled the lead to 2-0 on the power play, sliding the puck through the legs of a defender before whipping a wrist shot past Slovak netminder David Hrenak only 84 seconds into the middle frame.

“They [Slovakia] gave us a tough ride all game, but we played our game overall and we got better each period. We also wanted to stay out of the box and tonight we were a lot more disciplined,” said Kyrou.

Jonah Gadjovich (Whitby, Ont,/Owen Sound, OHL) tucked in his first of two goals at 5:43, and Taylor Raddysh (Caledon, Ont./Erie, OHL) buried his own rebound from in close on another Canadian man advantage at 10:33 to make it a four-goal lead after 40 minutes.

A pair of late goals capped the scoring in the third period; Maxime Comtois (Longueuil, Que./Victoriaville, QMJHL) jumped on an offensive-zone turnover and roofed a backhand past Hrenak, before Gadjovich redirected a feed from Michael McLeod (Mississauga, Ont./Mississauga, OHL) with 90 seconds left.

“It’s nice to see how the guys are coming together. One of the big things we stress in our room is the small habits; whether it’s angling on pucks or getting sticks on pucks. I think if we stay consistent on those things, we’ll grow as a team and be better moving through the tournament,” said Cale Makar (Calgary, Alta./University of Massachusetts, HE).

Canada faces the U.S. in the outdoor game on Dec. 29 (3 p.m. ET/12 p.m. PT). The U.S. defeated Belarus 9-0 in their opening game and face Slovakia on Dec. 28.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Penticton Vees return to action with 7-0 win over Salmon Arm

The Vees will get right back to it tomorrow night

United Way celebrates seven decades of impact in Southern Interior

Organization sees issues with poverty, mental health and addictions, heighten during the pandemic

Parks Canada not responsible for Mount Kobau blockade

Nearby residents have been vocal about plans to turn the area into a national park

Two new COVID-19 cases reported in Interior Health

The total number of Interior Health cases since the beginning of the pandemic is now at 522

Wind, rain expected to subside in Penticton

Warm, clear days ahead as wet and windy conditions are forecasted to clear up by Sunday

B.C. records 98 more COVID-19 cases, most in Lower Mainland

One new senior home outbreak, Surrey Memorial outbreak over

Kelowna man injured during arrest sues RCMP

Supreme Court civil claim alleges Dustin Blondin was the victim of an ‘unprovoked attack’

PHOTOS: 2nd calf in a month confirmed among Southern Resident killer whale pod

Center for Whale Research said they will eagerly await to observe the calf to evaluate its health

97 distressed horses, cats and dogs seized from farm in Princeton

RCMP assisted as BC SPCA executed search warrant

$250K reward offered as investigation continues into Sea to Sky Gondola vandalism

Police also asking for specific footage of Sea to Sky highway around time of incident

Trudeau ‘disappointed’ by RCMP treatment of Sikh officers over mask issue

World Sikh Organization of Canada said taking Sikh officers off the front lines constitutes discrimination

Liberals reach deal with NDP on COVID-19 aid bill, likely averting election

NDP and the Liberals have reached an agreement on COVID-19 sick-leave

Money laundering inquiry delayed over of B.C. election: commissioner

Austin Cullen says the hearings will start again on Oct. 26

2 British Columbians arrested, 3 at large in massive Alberta drug bust

Eight people are facing 33 charges in what police have dubbed Project Incumbent

Most Read