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World Hockey

Swedes oust USA, face Canada

By Wire services
Published May 9, 2004

PRAGUE, Czech Republic - Dick Tarnstrom scored 18 seconds in and Sweden beat the United States 3-2 Saturday, setting up a rematch of last year's final against Canada at the World Hockey Championships.

Canada, which beat Sweden on a disputed overtime goal in 2003, edged Slovakia 2-1 on Shawn Horcoff's third-period goal. The United States hoped to create the first all-North American final in 54 years, but instead faces Slovakia in today's bronze-medal game.

"I think it's going to take a lot hard work," Rangers and U.S. goalie Mike Dunham said. "We are going to have to skate well, we're going to have to dump the puck in and get a good forecheck going."

Tarnstrom, who this season became the first defenseman to lead the Penguins in scoring, netted the second-fastest goal at the start of a game in the tournament.

"They seemed to work harder and there was more effort out there," Dunham said. "We still have a chance to win a medal."

Dunham started over Ty Conklin, who shut out the Czech Republic in overtime and a shootout Thursday in the quarterfinals.

Jonas Hoglund tipped in Michael Nylander's pass to give Sweden a 2-0 lead with 1:02 left in the first as Mike Grier served a double minor for high-sticking.

It was Hoglund's third goal in two games against the United States. He scored twice in a 3-1 victory in the qualifying round.

Richard Park of the Wild cut the deficit to 2-1 at 11:06 of the second when he shoveled a backhander past the stick of goalie Henrik Lundqvist.

But P.J. Axelsson of the Bruins restored Sweden's two-goal lead with another power-play goal with 16 seconds left in the period. He beat Dunham with a wrister from between the circles after a pass from Detroit's Nicklas Lidstrom. American Jeff Halpern scored with 36 seconds left in the game.

Canada ousted previously unbeaten Slovakia with Horcoff's disputed goal. Canada will keep its No.1 ranking regardless of today's outcome.

Horcoff scored 6:10 into the third. Slovakia's Jan Lasak came out of the crease and behind the net to send the puck out. But he was downed by Rob Niedermayer's stick, when the Mighty Ducks forward swooped in to chase him.

The sprawling Lasak was unable to get back in position in time. Horcoff took a pass from Steve Staios and swept the puck from inside the crease, under pressure, into the unprotected net.

The Slovaks contended Niedermayer tripped the vulnerable Lasak, who smashed his stick on the crossbar when the referee allowed the goal.

[Last modified May 9, 2004, 01:40:27]


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