Group B – Ondrej Nepla Arena, Bratislava

The starting position was clear, both teams had to win in order not to descend. For both teams it was about remaining in the Top Division.

IIHF World Championship Top Division 2019 Austria vs Italy #23 Simon Kostner, #6 Sean McMonagle, #26 Armin Helfer, #12 Michael Raffl. Ondrej Nepela Arena, Bratislava © Robanser

The Austrians knew about the importance of this game and started right away. Zwerger hit only the pole and a shot from Heinrich could hold goalie Bernard. If Austria let the Italians into the game, it became dangerous. After good chances Rosa and Traversa gave the lead. Austria was better in the build-up, but Schneider and Strong gave further good chances. After a quick push Bardaro scored the 1-0 for Italy (10.). Seconds later, Miceli gives another good opportunity. But Austria pushed on. Unterweger with a shot, Benrard fended off shortly and Ganahl scored the 1-1 (12.). This goal seemed liberating and after good work by Hofer Michael Raffl hits with a dive jump to 2-1 (17.).

IIHF World Championship Top Division 2019 Austria vs Italy #17 Manuel Ganahl Ondrej Nepela Arena, Bratislava © Robanser

The Austrians have a power play at the beginning of the middle period, but Komarek gives a good opportunity. However, shortly afterwards Schneider had to go to the penalty box and 4-vs-4 continued. After these penalties Schneider catches the puck in the Italian game structure. This plays on Thomas Raffl and fails to Bernard. Then the Austrians were a bit negligent and Italy came to opportunities. It came as it had to come, Kostner scored the equalizer goal to 2-2 (35.). That’s not enough for Italy shortly before the break – Rosa scored the 3-2 (39.).

After just under two minutes in the final period, Michael Raffl, Austria’s only NHL legionnaire, scored the important 3-3 equalizer with his second goal in the match (42.). The Italians did not hide and continue to play, Lambacher with a good chance, but Goalie Kickert was watchful. On the side of Austria Ganahl had a chance, but goalie Bernard fended off. In a power play for Austria gives Thomas Raffl from close range a chance, Bernard prevented with an incredible reflex a goal. The Austrians did not seem stable and Bardaro alone forgives Goalie Kickert. Pallestrang forgives the chance for the lead, his shot secures Bernard from. Pallestrang pokes for, conceding a penalty and Italy has another power play. Another goal fell and it went into the over-time.

IIHF World Championship Top Division 2019 Austria vs Italy #23 Simon Kostner, #90 Alexander Pallestrang, #30 David Kickert. Ondrej Nepela Arena, Bratislava © Robanser

The best opportunity for decision Komarek, who plays through the Italian defense, but the conclusion totally fails. Shortly thereafter, it was Haudum, but he can not beat Goalie Bernard. The Italians also give the decision, Rosa shoots goalie Kickert. That’s it and then the penalty shootout.

Only the 14th shooter scored the penalty in the penalty shootout – McMonagle scores with his penalty and Italy wins 4-3. Austria has to descend into Div 1A.

Photo Galerie AUT vs ITA

Team Austria vs Team Italy 3-4 SO (2-1, 0-2, 1-0, 0-0, 0-1)

Group A – Steel Arena, Kosice

For the Team Canada it is about the placement, it was a victory over Denmark. A place in the top two in the group A secures the whereabouts in Kosice, otherwise it would have to be traveled.

In Kosice, record world champion Canada took the 1-0-lead after just one minute through Dubois. Only a few minutes later McCann scored the 2-0 (7.). With this goal the play went in a certain direction and still before half-time of the period Marchessault scores the 3-0 (9.). Canada made it clear with that goal, the game went well and the maple leaves slowed down.

In the second period, Canada conceded a penalty at the start by Turris and Denmark had a power play. The Scandinavians tried hard to score, but Canada scored well in the defense. It was followed by two more power plays for Denmark, but also remained without goals. When Canada was awarded the first power play, the final decision was made. Reinhart scored after preliminary work by Couturier the 4-0 (34.).

In the final period, Canada made up more for the game and Reinhart scored the 5-0 (45.) – his second goal in the game. Canada changes the goalie ten minutes from time, and Blackwood comes in for Hart, who suffered a minor injury in the last action. Canada wins against Denmark and is currently 2nd in Group A.

Team Canada vs Team Denmark 5-0 (3-0, 1-0, 1-0)