Canada cruises to blowout win over Austria
After Canada’s first game at the Sochi Olympics, there was some concern about chemistry and a lack of offense.
The second game put those concerns to rest.
One day after the Canadians slogged through a 3-1 win over Norway, they put forth a complete and dominant effort against an overmatched Austrian squad, winning 6-0 at the Bolshoy Ice dome. The win displayed both the speed and goalscoring prowess many expected from Canada at the onset of the tournament.
Los Angeles forward Jeff Carter led the way with a natural hat trick in the second period and San Jose’s Patrick Marleau assisted on all three goals. Carter and Marleau finished with a team-high three points as a result, while Shea Weber and Ryan Getzlaf added two points each.
Roberto Luongo posted a 23-save shutout in his first action of the tournament.
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Austria, who came into this tournament as a major underdog, was blown out for the second consecutive game after losing 8-4 to Finland in the tournament opener. While little was expected of the Austrians in Sochi, Friday’s game had to be a disappointment as their three NHL forwards — Michael Raffl, Michael Grabner and Thomas Vanek — failed to score a single point, registered just six shots on goal and finished a combined minus-8.
Goalie Bernhard Starkbaum, who Vanek criticized following the Finland game, gave up six goals on 31 shots before getting hooked after two periods. Mathias Lange played well in relief, stopping all 15 shots in the final frame.
This game, though, was more about Canadian dominance than Austria’s inability to keep pace, and Canada had to be thrilled about getting major production from its blueline for the second straight game. Weber, Drew Doughty and Alex Pietrangelo combined for five points, and that came just one day after Doughty, Weber and Duncan Keith went for four in the win over Norway.
Canada will now take on Finland on Sunday to decide who finishes atop Group B, while Austria will take on Norway in the battle of winless squads.