Czech Republic had a comeback and defeated Belarus on Wednesday after falling behind in the second period.
The first period ended with only one goal, scored by Czech Simon Stransky. The goal followed shortly behind a penalty on Belarus, when Vadim Malinovski was called for slashing. Czech Republic goalie, Vitek Vanecek made 13 saves, and Belarusian goalie, Ivan Kulbakov, made five saves in the first period.
The second period was back-and-forth with goals. No lead lasted very long. Stepan Falkovski immediately tied up the game, scoring less than a minute into the second period. Falkovski’s goal was assisted by Artemi Chernikov and Danila Karaban.
Following the goal for Belarus, Filip Chlapik was penalized for holding, giving Belarus a chance to capitalize on a power play, which they did. Yegor Sharangovich’s goal, assisted by Stepan Falkovski and Danila Karaban, put Belarus at a 2-1 lead.
Dominik Lakatos tied the game for the Czech Republic, scoring two minutes after Belarus. Lakatos’s goal tallied another point for David Pastrnak and Filip Hronek.
Ondrej Miklis’ cross-checking penalty gave Belarus another power play opportunity, which they used to take back the lead. Belarus ended the second period with a 3-2 lead after Vladislav Goncharov’s goal assisted by Danila Karaban.
The second period resulted in 13 saves for Vitek Vanecek and 11 saves for Ivan Kulbakov.
Halfway into the third period, the Czech Republic was able to come back and tie the game. Jiri Smejkal scored with eight minutes remaining to bring the score to 3-3. Smejkal’s goal was assisted by Michael Spacek and Jan Ordos.
Czech Republic regained the lead when Radek Vesely scored with six minutes left in the game. With under a minute of time left in the game, Belarus pulled Kulbakov and Dominik Mason scored bringing the final score to 5-3.
Vanacek had six saves in the third period and Kulbakov had 17. This win for the Czech Republic is the first time since 2005 that they have had two regulation wins during the group stage.
Czech Republic remains in second place in Group B and will face Finland on Thursday the 31st.