Team Canada remains undefeated at the World Junior Hockey Championships after a 10-0 win over Switzerland on Tuesday night.
Coming off of a sloppy 3-1 win against Slovakia, Team Canada looked to improve their overall game. They got both defenceman Braden Schneider and forward Dylan Holloway back in the lineup for this one. Schneider had missed the bulk of the first two games after being suspended by the IIHF for a check to the head in game one. Holloway was scratched just before game two due to an upper body injury but was able to return to play Switzerland.
Canada came out flying, scoring less than two minutes in. Philip Tomasino carried his strong play from game two into this one, giving Canada a lead to work with. Even with his limited ice time, Tomasino has emerged as a key producer for Team Canada. There were a combined six minor penalties in the first frame, both teams going perfect on the penalty kill.
Team Canada’s offense exploded in the second period with goals from Dylan Cozens, Jakob Pelletier, Ryan Suzuki and Connor McMichael, two of those coming on the powerplay. It was nice to see Team Canada’s depth on display with fourteen players recording points in this game.
Come the third period, Switzerland could not control the Canadians. They continued their offensive dominance and scored another heap of goals. The goals in this frame came from Quinton Byfield (2), Cole Perfetti, Kaiden Guhle, as well as another from Pelletier.
Goaltender Devon Levi got his third start of the tournament and stopped everything that came his way. This was his first shutout at the World Junior Championships.
This was a much stronger game from the Canadians, not just offensively but as a whole. They cleaned up their defensive zone play and strengthened their forecheck, creating more opportunity. It was by far their most complete game of the tournament which is encouraging to see heading into the tougher matchups ahead. Canada will have a day off on Wednesday and then take on Finland in a New Year’s Eve showdown.
Mikayla’s Players of the Game
2 G, 4 A, 6 Points, 2 SOG
Quinton Byfield, the youngest player on the team for the second straight year, has faced backlash for his lack of production so far at the World Juniors. The Los Angeles Kings prospect showed what he is capable of in terms of production. Byfield had been playing well up to this point but he was finally rewarded on the score sheet. His size matched with his incredible skating ability makes for a major threat on the ice, something the Swiss saw first hand on Tuesday. Byfield will continue to improve and one day, make big waves at an even higher level.
0 G, 0 A, 0 Points, 3 SOG
Switzerland was shut out in the Canadian victory but Raymond Fust was a bright spot for them. With three shots on goal, Fust created opportunities for his team. He battled well for the puck, using size to his advantage. He is eligible for the 2021 NHL Draft.