2019 Sirius Junior Club World Cup Day 5 action kicked off with a game between Swiss Davos and Team AJHL, representing Canada. Both teams needed a win to clinch a semifinal berth. Canada would automatically clinch the berth, while Davos would also need Loko Yaroslavl to beat MODO.
Despite the fact that both teams had a lot to lose, the game began with some fast-paced hockey. The Swiss created the first scoring chance of the game but Griffin Bowerman stood his ground and made two huge saves from in tight. AJHL Selects also got the first penalty of the game as Jeremy Gervais got a minor but Davos failed to create any trouble for Bowerman.
An interesting episode took place late in the period. Carlo Pingeon had as many as three opportunities to take a shot but he struggled to pull the trigger. He created a scoring chance with his first two shots and then missed the net on his third attempt. There was no scoring in the opening stanza. AJHL got off to a hot start in the second frame as they pinned Davos to their defensive end. Marvin Kortin had to make several saves, while his defensemen helped him out with a lot of blocked shots. Six minutes in the teams found themselves down a man and Team AJHL quickly turned it into goal. William Zapernick didn’t take a powerful wrist-shot but it beat Kortin 5-hole.
Canadians couldn’t convert on Marc Cadonau’s minor but just as he stepped back onto the ice, Daine Dubois beat Kortin from close range to make it a 2-0 hockey game. Davos could get a goal back shorthanded but Nino Russo could not convert on his breakaway chance as he missed the net. Late in the period Davos gave up the momentum and began piling up penalties as the team struggled to keep AJHL Selects at bay.
With three minutes remaining on the clock Jannik Canova got a minor penalty and it took Alberta just 22 seconds to convert on it. Jordan Biro beat three opponents and fed wide-open Ryan Conroy who tapped it home on the cross-ice pass. 30 seconds later Davos got another penalty. AJHL forced the same play they had scored on several times but this time the Swiss survived.
Zapernick scored his second of the game early in the third period, improving the lead to 4-0 and essentially putting it out of reach. Davos still tried to create something offensively but Bowerman was rarely called to action, while Canadians scored another one. This time Max Giangualano found his target. Davos called time-out and swapped Kortin for Florian Haller. In the final ten minutes of play the Swiss continued getting one penalty after another and Team AJHL made them pay for that. Michael Benning improved the lead to 6-0. Giangualano set the final score as he split the defense and fired a low shot home. Team AJHL enjoy the biggest blowout of the tournament as they beat Davos 7-0 and join Loko in the semifinal round.
“We made the semifinal. We very happy. MODO coaching staff was at the game? Yes, I think we really frustrated them,” said Team AJHL forward Max Giangualano. “But we came here for the gold. It’s great to make it to the semifinal. My two goals? It was exciting to score twice in such important game. A lot of things went right for us today.”
“I have a superstition. I’m always last to leave the ice after warm-up,” said Team AJHL goaltender Griffin Bowerman. “I couldn’t do that today. One Davos player stayed on the ice till the end. Perhaps, it looked really funny. We were out there even when Zamboni came out. We were out there for at least 5-7 minutes. We shook hands after that game and smiled. Actually, I didn’t allow a single goal so maybe I should leave the ice first in the season (laughs). Davos were fast today and they played well at the blue line. There was a period when they were taking a lot of shots and I had to make one save after another. It probably helped me to get in the rhythm and get the shutout. We made the semifinal and now await our opponent. Kärpät [Oulu] play well in Pool B, I saw a couple of their games. It would be interesting to play against Team NAHL. I like such games. It would be a difficult game but it would show what we’re both worth.”
“We played well in the first period and could open scoring. Canadians began provoking us in the second period and we gave in, which led to unnecessary penalties,” said Davos head-coach Michel Riesen. “It was difficult to come back in the game after allowing so many goals. It’s a tough result, especially given the high level of our team. We believed we could beat Canadians. Our problem was that we didn’t score. We created very few scoring chances, didn’t convert on the powerplay and then allowed frustrating goals. That broke us. We played three games in almost three days. But we were all in the same boat. Yes, Canadians had more time to recover but we outplayed them in the first period and could get in the lead. Had we lost 4-2, it would have been more fair. We didn’t deserve to lose 7-0.”
2019 Sirius Junior Club World Cup
August 27th. Sochi, Russia. Shayba Ice Arena
Round robin. Group А
Davos (Switzerland) – Team AJHL (Canada) – 0-7 (0-0, 0-3, 0-4)
0-1 – Zapernick (Kincaid, Brockhoff) – 25-44
0-2 – Dubois (Benoit, Kindrachuk) – 29-58
0-3 – Conroy (Biro, Savoie) – 37-19 PPG
0-4 – Zapernick (Conroy) – 40-47
0-5 – Giangualano (Truman) – 47-49
0-6 – Benning (Truman, Giangualano) – 51-37 PPG
0-7 – Giangualano (Biro) – 57-52
Goaltenders: Kortin, Haller - Bowerman