Canada records its first win of the World Juniors

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can world jr 2016

Team Canada photo Sean Walmsley

HELSINKI, Finland – Brayden Point (Calgary, Alta./Moose Jaw, WHL), Mathew Barzal (Coquitlam, B.C./Seattle, WHL) and Mitchell Marner (Thornhill, Ont./London, OHL) each had multipoint games – and 13 skaters in all got on the score sheet Monday – as Canada’s National Junior Team defeated Denmark 6-1 to pick up its first win of the 2016 IIHF World Junior Championship.

Despite outshooting Denmark 19-4 over the opening 20 minutes, Canada found itself tied 1-1 heading into the first intermission.

But a four-goal second period blew the game open and allowed Canada to improve its record to 4-0 all- time against Denmark at the World Juniors.

Canada outshot Denmark 58-11 overall, 18-0 in the third period alone. It was only the third time in team history – and the first since 1985 – that Canada did not allow a single shot in a period.

The Canadians were dominant right from the opening puck drop. Less than a minute in, Lawson Crouse (Mt. Brydges, Ont./Kingston, OHL) came within millimetres of scoring, the puck clinging to a fraction of the Danish goal line to stay out.

But it would be the Danes scoring first, on a goal from Alexander True 12:49 into the first.

Sixty-three seconds later Barzal drew the Danish defenders to him and fed a cross-ice pass to Anthony Beauvillier (Sorel, Que./Shawinigan, QMJHL), who tapped the puck into an open net.

The goals started coming for Canada only 1:14 into the second period. Marner’s shot from the face-off circle hit both a Danish defender and teammate John Quenneville (Edmonton, Alta., Brandon, WHL) before going in.

Nearly four minutes later, Barzal – Canada’s Player of the Game – roofed a wrist shot far side from the face-off circle to put Canada up two. Fifty-one seconds later, Travis Konecny (Clachan, Ont./Ottawa, OHL) drove behind the net and sent a pass cross-crease to Crouse, who directed the puck under goalie Mathias Seldrup’s pads.

The lead grew to four halfway through the period after Dylan Strome (Mississauga, Ont./Erie, OHL) sent a pass from the goal line cross-ice to the face-off circle, where Marner beat Seldrup short side.

Strome put an exclamation point on the win midway through the third, deking a defender then picking the top corner on the power play.

Goalie Mason McDonald (Halifax, N.S./Charlottetown, QMJHL) got the win for Canada.

Seldrup made 52 saves and was named Denmark’s Player of the Game.

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