Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Sports Shorts: Russia, Finland to Meet for World Hockey Championship

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Sports Shorts: Russia, Finland to Meet for World Hockey Championship

Article excerpt

Finland, Russia win, will meet for hockey crown

Russia beat defending champion Sweden 3-1 in a matchup of the last two ice hockey world championship title holders and advanced to this year's title game. The Russians on Sunday will meet Finland, which beat Czech Republic 3-0 in the other semifinal game of the tournament being played in Minsk, Belarus.

Russia has won all nine of its games at the tourney, and is one win away from its second title in three years and has a chance to avenge a disappointing loss to Finland in the quarterfinals in the Sochi Olympics. Finland struggled in the group stage this year, losing three times, and needed a help from Switzerland to advance before eliminating Canada in the quarterfinals. Finland last won the worlds in 2011.

Russia rebounded from a goal by Oscar Moller just 19 seconds into the game as Sergei Plotnikov and Sergei Shirokov scored later in the first period. Defenseman Anton Belov drove a slap shot into the net on a rebound to make it 3-1 in the second in front of roaring Russian fans.

For Finland, Jori Lehtera scored on a backhand in the first period before Jarkko Immonen scored on a power play in the second and Lehtera added an empty-net tally in the third. Goaltender Pekka Rinne stopped 20 shots for the shutout. (AP)

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