MAGNITOGORSK, Russia – Ty Dellandrea (Port Perry, Ont./Flint, OHL) scored with 6:41 left to make it a one-goal game, but Canada’s National Men’s Under-18 Team saw its run at the 2018 IIHF U18 World Championship end with a 2-1 quarter-final loss to the Czech Republic on Thursday.
With the Canadians pressing as the minutes ticked away, Dellandrea snapped home a cross-ice pass from Allan McShane (Collingwood, Ont./Oshawa, OHL) to get the red-and-white on the board.
Canada put Olivier Rodrigue (Chicoutimi, Que./Drummondville, QMJHL) on the bench with 90 seconds left, but couldn’t come up with the equalizer.
Rodrigue shone in the Canadian goal despite the loss, finishing with 29 saves and keeping Canada close into the third period. He finished the tournament with a 1.33 goals-against average and .949 save percentage in three games.
Matej Blumel gave the Czech Republic the lead midway through the first period, tucking a shot Rodrigue, who made 13 saves in the opening 20 minutes.
The Canadians turned the tide in the second period, holding a 12-10 advantage, and outshot the European side 15-7 in the third, but couldn’t get a puck past Czech goaltender Lukas Dostal, who finished with 33 saves.
Petr Cajka had the other goal for the Czechs, netting the eventual game-winner midway through the third period.
“You just have to grow from everything in life – you’re not losing, you’re just learning. I’m going to take everything [from this experience] and hopefully one day I’ll get another crack at beating the Czechs in a situation like this. Until then, I’m just learning and growing from this whole tournament. It was a great tournament and we worked hard.”
Alternate captain Ty Dellandrea on what he will take away from the experience at the 2018 IIHF U18 World Championship