MOSCOW, May 2. /TASS/. The Russian men's national under-18 ice hockey team triumphed over the national squad of the Czech Republic 11-1 in the final group stage encounter of the 2021 IIHF (the International Ice Hockey Federation) Ice Hockey U18 World Championship.
The 2021 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 World Championship is being hosted by the US cities of Frisco and Plano, Texas, between April 26 and May 6. Given the preventive measures to fight the spread of COVID-19, all players and staff of the national teams live in so-called bubbles and the audience attendance during the matches is limited to 40-percent of stadium capacity.
The Russian side’s goals were scored by Matvei Michkov (2nd, 46th and 59th minutes), Prokhor Poltapov (14th and 39th minutes), Ivan Miroshnichenko (18th minute), Arseny Koromyslov (31st minute), Dmitry Katelevsky (34th minute), Fyodor Svechkov (48th and 52nd minutes), Danila Yurov (58th minute), while their opponents’ goal was netted by Jakub Kos (33rd minute).
Ten participating national ice hockey teams were divided into two groups, with the event’s host, the United States, playing in Group B alongside the teams from Russia, the Czech Republic, Finland and Germany. Group A includes the national squads from Sweden, Switzerland, Canada, Latvia and Belarus.
The Russian team scored nine points in four games and is currently in the lead in Group B. Later on Sunday, teams from Finland (second place, eight points) and the US (third place, six points) will meet in the concluding group encounter. The Czech Republic is in the fourth place with four points, while the German team is in the last place (0 points). Four teams from each group will proceed to the quarter-finals.
The opponent of Russia in the quarter-final games will be determined after all group stage encounters. The Czech Republic will play against Canada.
The 2021 Ice Hockey U18 World Championship is the 23rd tournament event of its kind that has been organized annually since 1999 for players of top national teams under the age of 18. The 2020 championship, which was scheduled to be hosted by the US cities of Plymouth and Ann Arbor, Michigan, was cancelled due to the global spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Russian U18 ice hockey team is ranked third in terms of winning medals at the championships, having taken home three gold, five silver and three bronze medals. They follow the national teams of Finland (four gold, three silver and four bronze medals) and the United States. The US team tops the medals standings of the U18 ice hockey championships with 10 gold, four silver and three bronze medals.
At the 2019 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 World Championship, Russia took the silver losing to the event’s host, Sweden 3-4 in overtime of the final match in Ornskoldsvik.