Category: Tournaments (Page 1 of 12)

Final thriller – Ambri takes the cup to the Leventina

Source: Spengler Cup

Ambri-Piotta wins the 94th Spengler Cup 3-2 against Sparta Prague. After Prague tied the game at 2-2 in the third period, the game advanced to become an overtime and shootout thriller!

With that, HC Ambri-Piotta wins the Spengler Cup for the first time. Inti Pestoni scored on the decisive shootout attempt.

After a cautious start on both sides, the final really took off with the first penalty. Alex Formenton used the powerplay to give Ambri the lead. Spengler Cup top scorer Spacek registered his fifth assist on that goal. Sparta Prague reacted to the deficit immediately. Only 50 seconds later David Tomasek finished his solo effort with a smooth, well-placed wrist shot for the equalizer.  Thereafter, the game was controlled by both defenses for the rest of the first period.
The Czechs dominated the second period early on. But the Swiss found success in ice-cold counterattacks. On the first penalty kill, Tim Heed found Formenton, who hesitated long enough on the breakaway to leave Sparta keeper Jakub Kovar no chance. With the Ticinesi’s renewed lead, the game was spectacularly launched to the delight of the 6,287 spectators in the sold-out ice palace. From that point on Prague pushed the offense, while Ambri remained dangerous on the counterattack.

The third period continually developed into one-way hockey directed at Ambri’s goal. And the Czechs were rewarded for their offensive efforts in the 54th minute. Roman Horak scored on a pass by Erik Thorell to make it 2-2. Because Formenton and Spacek in all alone both failed to beat Kovar, the result was a final shootout. There, Dario Burgler scored for the Swiss and Thorell for the Czechs before Inti Pestoni secured Ambri the victory on the tenth shootout attempt overall. For the Ticinesi this Spengler Cup win is the most prestigious success in club history.

Head of the organizing committee Marc Gianola spoke of the “best Spengler Cup of all time” in his closing statement. Overall, the on-ice performances were very good. Eight of eleven games in the completely renovated Eisstadion were played in front of a sell-out crowd.

Sparta Prague and Ambri-Piotta are in the final

Source:  Spengler Cup

Sparta Prague, with a 4-3 win over Orebro, and HC Ambri-Piotta, winning 5-0 against HC Davos, have qualified for the final of the 94th Spengler Cup.

30 minutes into the game, the Czechs trailed the Swedes 3-0, then scored four consecutive goals before the second intermission.

Orebro had the better start to the game. The logical consequence was an early 1-0 lead through Mathias Brome. Contrary to their quarterfinal against Team Canada, when the Scandinavians retreated deep into their own zone and defended their lead with patience and a cement wall after scoring the go-ahead goal, they resorted to consistent forechecking to break down the play already in the offensive zone.

In the second period Sparta Prague managed to increase the pressure on the Swedish net. A spectacular game developed. Kristian Nakyva and Rasmus Nissanen added to the lead for a seemingly decisive 3-0 advantage with fine, lightning-like long-range markers. Only 31 seconds later, David Dvoracek’s goal brought back the suspense with Sparta Prague’s first goal. Following that, the Czechs showed impressive efficiency on the finish. In the middle period they scored four goals on eleven shots – within nine minutes.

Sparta Prague can now become the first Czech team since 1984 to win the Spengler Cup.

HC Ambri-Piotta may have a word to say about that. The Ticinesi are in the Spengler Cup for the first time. Ambri appeared fresher and livelier in the semi-final game against HCD. Not surprisingly. The Ticinesi were playing their third Spengler Cup game in five days, while it was the fourth matchup in 72 hours for Davos. Nonetheless, the team from Grisons had their chances – but could not get by Ambri’s goalie Janne Juvonen. The guests, on the other hand, struck during a two-man advantage. Dario Burgler’s shot from the slot left HCD goaltender Sandro Aeschlimann no chance. Davos was misfortunate twice before the intermission. First Aleksi Saarela hit the post on the powerplay, and shortly thereafter Andres Ambuhl hit the crossbar on a penalty shot.

The play was even in the middle period. The guests had an 18-17 shots-on-net advantage after 40 minutes. Strength-wise Davos was at its limit. This was exemplified on the third goal, when the puck was coughed up on the powerplay – Filip Chlapik took advantage and beat Anschlimann on the breakaway.

Davos had a chance to get on the scoreboard when they had a two-man advantage 100 seconds into the final period. Saarela hit the post, but no goal resulted. On the other side, Ambri forward Nando Eggenberger’s 4-0 marker in the 48th minute sealed the deal. Ambri’s 5th goal came on an empty-netter by Inti Pestoni.

Defending champion Canada out – host Davos on to semifinals

Source: Spengler Cup

Defending champion Team Canada was already stopped in the quarterfinals by Orebro. Tactically exceptional and strong one-on-one, the Swedes cruised to a 3-1 victory. In the second pre-semifinal game, HC Davos narrowly got past Helsinki.

After falling behind early in its first two games, Team Canada started more cautiously against Orebro. Still, the Canadians got themselves in trouble early when Radek Muzik took a major penalty and game misconduct. The Swedes had many shots on net during the man-advantage. But Canada’s goaltender Michael Hutchinson was only beaten on the 18th shot, when Filip Berglund scored exactly twelve minutes into the game. The reaction of the team from overseas was surprisingly tame. Optically, the Canadians may have had an advantage, but were unable to create dangerous scoring opportunities against the Swedes, who were playing disciplined and strong to the man. Orebro’s goalkeeper Jonas Arntzen also exuded confidence and certainty with his exceptional positioning.
The deciding goal came 21 second into the final period: on the powerplay, Linus Oberg took the puck across practically the entire ice and successfully finished. Subsequently, the Swedes focused primarily on controlling the game. Some suspense only returned to the game six and a half minutes before the end, when Chris DiDomenico cut the lead in half. But that ended up being mere aesthetics for the Canadians. In the final minute, Mathias Brome’s empty-net goal sealed the final score.
For the first time since its debut at the Spengler Cup in 1984, the Canadians are going home with three losses and without a win. Also, it is only the second time they were eliminated in the quarterfinals.

In the second pre-semifinal game, HC Davos qualified for tomorrow’s semifinal matchup against Ambri-Piotta with a 3-2 win over IFK Helsinki. In the 54th minute Marc Wieser scored the game-winner on the powerplay in this high-level, balanced game.
With its resolute, aggressive engagement in one-on-one matchups, Davos was visibly determined to make up for the shameful 9-2 loss against Sparta Prague. That was to be expected, though. Surprising, however, was the tempo the Finns put forward. They controlled the game in the first period with their quick, determined attacks (16-5 shots on net).

Davos was more prepared for its opponent in the second period. They interrupted the Finns more effectively with earlier forechecking, bringing the Helsinki-Express to a stutter. At the same time the hosts became more dangerous on the offense (15 shots on net in the second period). Their persistence paid off. Andres Ambuhl buried the rebound after a shot by Klas Dahlbeck for a 2-1 lead. The 6,275 spectators in the sold out Eisstadion witnessed an attractive game, also because the Finns remained a constant threat on the counterattack but failed to get past the secure HCD goaltender Sandro Aeschlimann. The suspense reached its maximum when Eetu Koivistoinen tied it at 2-2 64 seconds into the third period. The game-winner was scored during a 4-minute penalty to Roni Hirvonen for high-sticking Aleksi Saarela in the face. Marc Wieser finished an accurate pass from Corvi in the 54th minute. With great discipline, the hosts then took care of business.

Ambri-Piotta and Sparta Prague move into semifinals

Spengler cup

Source: Spengler Cup

With a 7-3 win over IFK Helsinki, HC Ambri-Piotta secured the top spot in Group Torriani and as such the berth in Friday’s semifinals. The second Wednesday game, too, ended in a blowout – 9-2 for Sparta Prague over HC Davos.

The Ticinesi already had a 3-0 lead after 23 minutes. The Finns punished themselves with individual mistakes. An errant pass by an IFK defenseman set up scorer Inti Pestoni for Ambri’s go-ahead goal. The third goal, finished by Filip Chlapik, was the result of a disorganized defense.
Two long-range goals by Johan Motin and Otso Rantakari brought IFK Helsinki, which held a 21-17 shots-on-net advantage, back into the game. On the scoreboard, however, it trailed 4-2. The offensive fireworks on both sides of the ice continued in the final period as well to the delight of the spectators. The result was the highest-scoring game of the 94th Spengler Cup so far: 7-3 – a blowout victory for Ambri.

Instead of qualifying for the semifinals, HC Davos suffered a 9-2 fiasco at the hands of the high-performing Sparta Prague. Davos was chasing a deficit already 83 seconds into the game. Michal Kempny took advantage of complete disorder in the hosts’ defense to score from long range. After that, Davos had trouble against the feisty, headstrong, and confident Czechs, who played assertively and increased their lead on a redirect by Ostap Safin. A hard pass by Michael Fora set up Matej Stransky who cut the lead to 2-1 shortly before the first intermission.
But that marker did not lead to the hoped relief for Davos. Instead, they conceded a short-hander by Kempny on the first powerplay. In the 33rd minute, the Czechs then exploited the lack of orientation in Davos’ defense to score twice within 43 seconds.
Prague continued their power display in the final period. Davos’ second goal by Andres Ambuhl 20 seconds before the final buzzer was no more than a bitter consolation prize. Sparta Prague served Davos the highest Spengler Cup loss in 38 years. On December 30, 1984, Davos suffered a 13-2 rout against Dukla Jihlava.

First win for Örebro & Davos takes down Team Canada

Spengler cup

Source: Spengler Cup

Örebro HC clinched their first win in their second game in Spengler Cup history. The Swedes defeated IFK Helsinki 5-2 on Tuesday afternoon.

The two Scandinavian teams, who are actually known for their puck control and patience in attacking play, delivered a surprisingly offensive exchange of blows – much to the delight of the spectators. This resulted in four goals and 24 shots on goal (13:11 for IFK Helsinki) in the first third alone. Örebro got off to a better start and used the first two powerplay opportunities thanks to his precise passing game to take a 2-0 lead. Elias Ekström opened the scoring with a precise Hocheck long-range shot (6th). The Swedes combined to make it 2-0 so long and so quickly that Filip Berglund was able to shoot in from the side (12th). However, Örebro’s third power play failed. Micke Aston reduced the deficit with a man down (14′). And 135 seconds later Kasper Halttunen equalized for IFK.

The Finns dominated the game in the middle third. However, they were not cool enough and precise in the end, or they failed because of the excellent Örebro goalie Jonas Arntzen. It took revenge: Oliver Eklind completed an exemplary counterattack with the 3:2 for the Swedes (32,). And with only the fifth shot on the Finnish goal in the middle section, Örebro’s captain Rodrigo Abols even increased the advantage with a man down (39′). Despite total commitment, the Finns were unable to turn the tide in the last third. Instead, William Wikman made it 5-2 with an Emtpy Netter 93 seconds before the end of the game.

While Örebro is without a game on Wednesday, IFK Helsinki meets HC Ambri-Piotta in the afternoon game. The Swiss can even lose against the Finns by two goals and still win their group.

HC Davos defeated Team Canada 2-1 at the 94th Spengler Cup in its first tournament on Tuesday evening. After 115 seconds, he was already 2-0 up thanks to goals from Andrew Rowe and Leon Bristedt. HCD goalie Sandro Aeschlimann then became the match winner with several big saves.

How much Team Canada was looking for reparation after their surprising 2:3 defeat against Sparta Prague and how the Canadians still wanted to seize their last chance to win the group was revealed in the goalie selection. Your goal against HC Davos was guarded by Canadian-Swiss dual citizen Connor Hughes of Fribourg-Gottéron. Only ten days ago he made his debut for the Swiss national team against the Czech Republic. Hughes supposedly only traveled to the Spengler Cup as a replacement because Michael DiPietro’s goalkeeper equipment had not yet arrived in Switzerland due to flights being canceled due to the winter storms.

The game started badly for Hughes though. Before he held the first puck, his team was already 2-0 down. After 51 seconds of the game, “Rappi’s” loanee Andrew Rowe converted an ideal pass from Enzo Corvi to make it 1-0. And 84 seconds later Leon Bristedt doubled up after preparatory work by Dennis Rasmussen. It took the Canadians some time to recover from that false start. They really put HCD goalkeeper Sandro Aeschlimann to the test shortly before the first break with their first power play. Otherwise, the hosts had the game under control in the first third.

In the middle section, too, the Davosers managed to prevent the opponent from launching an orderly attack with speed and aggressive forechecking. At halftime, the hosts even missed the third goal during a period of pressure. But then the guests got into the game better and better. HCD goalie Aeschlimann took center stage. 164 seconds before the second break, however, he was no longer able to prevent the goal when his view was blocked. Brett Connolly hit the target with a long shot.

In the final third, the tension was palpable in the sold-out Davos Ice Stadium. HCD missed the redeeming third goal with two power play opportunities. Hughes miraculously cleared against Marc Wieser (50th), Matej Stransky (55th) and Andres Ambühl (56th). However, his opponent advanced to the match winner. Aeschlimann kept his calm and overview, even in the last two minutes of the game, when the Canadians with six field players vehemently aimed for an equalizer. The HCD goalie saved 28 shots throughout the game. He deservedly received an award as HCD’s best player after the end of the game.

Davos now has it in their own hands or on their own sticks to win the group. That requires a win against Sparta Prague on Wednesday night. The Canadians, on the other hand, have to go to the quarter-finals as the last in their group. But she shouldn’t write off for a long time. From the same starting position, Team Canada still secured group victory in 2016.

Sparta Prague downs Team Canada and Ambri-Piotta moves past Orebro – this was day 1

Spengler Cup

Source: Spengler Cup

HC Ambri-Piotta opened the 94th Spengler Cup with a 5-2 win over tournament newbie Orebro. The Ticinesi decided the game in the middle period, scoring twice within 28 seconds to make it 3-1.

Sellout crowd, attractive game, many scoring opportunities
Orebro HK illustrated the famous Swedish ice hockey qualities: good organization and strong puck control. However, it was vulnerable to counterattacks. Alex Formenton, beautifully assisted by Tim Heed, moved past the last Swedish defenseman and left Jhonas Enroth no chance to make it 1-0. Josh Jooris finished a counterattack set up by Dominik Zwerger and Inti Pestoni in the second period making it  2-1. Only 28 seconds later, Brandon McMillan increased the lead.

33-26 shots on goal in favour of the Swedes
Christopher Mastomaki scored Orebro’s first goal, levelling it at 1-1 with a precise shot. The Swedes also had some bad luck, hitting the post before the end of each the first and second periods, before Linus Oberg moved the Scandinavians within one. Darion Burgler re-established Ambri’s two-goal lead on yet another counterattack. Burgler won the Spengler Cup with HC Davos in 2011. Already nearly 3 minutes before the final buzzer, Orebro pulled its goaltender and Ambri made it 5-2 with an empty netter for the final score – for the many Ambri fans this was the cue to sing their victory hymn “La Montanara”.
Already on Tuesday afternoon Orebro’s players will already have their next appearance when they face IFK Helsinki.

Sensational Sparta Prague downs Team Canada
Upset in the evening game: Sparta Prague beat defending champion and tournament favourite 3-2.
Sparta Prague and Team Canada engaged in a spectacular battle of attrition. The Czechs were in no way inferior to the Canadians, known and liked for their great spirit. Its confidence showed in the calm defensive work. Although the team from overseas optically seemed to have a slight advantage in the first period, it was Sparta Prague that went into the intermission with a 2-0 lead. Michal Repik on a counterattack and Daniel Pribyl scored within 40 seconds in the 19th minute of play. Repik further extended the lead with the first power play goal of the 94th Spengler Cup.
The Canadians, hurt in their pride, increased the tempo and offensive pressure massively, encouraged in part by Brett Connolly, who scored for Team Canada a mere 80 seconds after conceding the 3-0 goal. In the middle period alone, the Canadians fired twelve shots on net. Team Canada largely remained the dominant team in the third period as well. The Czechs missed their fourth goal on their brief, few chances. With the biggest save of the night, Korenar prevented the equalizer 188 seconds before the final buzzer, denying Carr on a breakaway. With its win, Sparta Prague earned itself a day off on Tuesday.

The Spengler Cup is finally back on Monday

Canada 2019 Spengler cup Champions

By  Thalia Twitty – WSC

The long awaited moment has finally come. Almost three years later (that was December 2019), the Spengler Cup will actually return on Monday. In the festive atmosphere of Davos, obscured in the last two editions due to the pandemic, the oldest international hockey tournament has returned and for this occasion, Umbro is also back, who played there for the first time in 2019. Inserted biancoblù, who will be able to count on reinforcements Josh Jooris (Geneva) , Nando Eggenberger (Rapperswil) and Vili Saarijärvi (Langnau), are in Torriani’s group and aim to do better than last year, when he gave up in the semifinals. IFK Helsinki and Örebrö are in the same group.

Also shining is the Catini group, which will see hosts Davos, Sparta Prague and of course Team Canada take part. In the national maple leaf team there will be 14 elements of the Swiss championship, including three players from Lugano: Daniel Carr, Chris Bennett and Brett Connolly. The start is scheduled for Monday with Ambrì-Örebrö at 15.10 and with Sparta Prague-Team Canada at 20.15.

The tournament will be broadcast on RSI LA2 e flow.

Belarus Wins Channel One Cup

Belarus National Team

Belarus wins first channel one cup.

By George Da Silva – National Teams of Ice Hockey

The Belarusians led three times in the game, but still allowed the hosts Russia to take the game into overtime. In extra time where no one scores, as a result, it came to post-match shootouts, where all the Russian shooters’ were neutralized by Alexei Kolosov, who was recognized as the best goalkeeper of the First Channel Cup tournament. The only successful shooter in the shootout was Shane Prince of the Belarusian national team,

The last time the national team of Belarus defeated the national team of Russia was on April 2, 2011 in a friendly game in Smolensk – 6:4 (1:1, 4:2, 1:1). The head coach of the Belarusian team then was Eduard Zankovets, and goals were scored by Dmitry Meleshko-2, Dmitri Korobov, Alexei Efimenko, Andrei Filichkin and Alexander Kulakov. Future world hockey stars Evgeny Kuznetsov, Artemi Panarin, Vladimir Tarasenko played for the Russians.

Hockey tournament among Islamic countries to be held in Kazan

Hockey tournament among Islamic countries

Source: AK Bars

From January 13 to January 19 Kazan will host the first international hockey tournament among Islamic countries. The decision to hold the competition was made at the international summit “Russia – Islamic World: KazanSummit 2022”.

The men’s national teams of the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Kuwait and Oman, the combined team of Algeria, Tunisia, Lebanon and Morocco, as well as the national team of The Republic of Tatarstan, will take part in the competition. Representatives of the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Tatarstan and the combined team of Oman and Bahrain will play in the women’s division.

Mansur Usmanov, Executive Director of HC Ak Bars:

We are glad that the decisions of the “Russia – Islamic World: KazanSummit 2022”. are being implemented in various sectors, including sports. It will be a great honor for us in Tatarstan to represent the great Russian hockey in the countries of the Islamic world. It is very pleasant that a common faith and sport bring nations together and help build partnerships between states. We hope that this tournament will be just the beginning of a long-term cooperation and will help the development of men’s and women’s hockey in the countries of the Middle East and North Africa.

Latam Cup Round Up

2022 Division I Latam Cup Champions.

By George Da Silva – National Teams of Ice Hockey

Puerto Rico were double winners at the 2022 Latam Cup. The men’s team defeated Argentina 4-3 in the final to claim there first title in the Men’s Division I, not to be out done the Puerto Rico U20 team  defeated the team from the Caribbean 8-1 for the Under-20 title. this is the first time U20 division as been played at the Latam Cup.

The Latam Cup men’s Division II final was a Middle Eastern confrontation between
Egypt and the Stars of Israel. Egypt’s  defeated the Stars of Israel 3-0. 

Egypt 2022 Latam Cup Men’s Division II Champions.

Mexico’s Warriors won the women’s championship with a 9-4 victory against a surprising Chile team who beat Puerto Rico (defend champions), Argentina and Colombia twice to reach the final. 

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