Tomáš Hertl scored 1:39 into overtime to provide the Czech Republic with a 4-3 victory over Switzerland. The Czechs managed to win the game despite allowing Switzerland to overcome a two goal deficit in the third period and send the game into overtime. Switzerland scored twice on the power play in the third. Hertl’s goal came when Dmitrij Jaškin bounced the puck boards behind the net to where Hertl stood ready to deposit the goal. Jaškin led the way for the Czechs with three assists in the game.
“It was the most important game, because we were playing for everything,” said Czech defenceman David Musil. “If we won, we’d make the playoffs.”
The goal scoring began 3:46 in the first period when Matěj Beran recovered a puck that Michal Švihálek fanned on and deposited it past the goal line. Switzerland then tied the game at 14:20 when Christian Marti put the puck past Czech goaltender Patrik Bartošák. The goal came a few minutes after Switzerland killed off a 5-on-3 Czech power play that lasted a minute and 15 seconds. When the Czechs failed to capitalize on the advantage, the Swiss salvaged what could have been a disastrous opening period.
However the Czechs managed to retake the lead early in the second period when Jaškin sent a no-look pass from behind the net to Švihálek, who scored his goal before the Swiss could get over the surprise of Jaškin’s pass. The Czechs then added to their second period tally with another goal less than three minutes later. Jaškin then sent a backhanded pass through the legs of two Swiss defenders towards the front of the net to teammate Tomáš Hyka. After Hyka deposited the puck past Swiss netminder Melvin Nyffeler, the Czechs were able to skate out of the second period with a two-goal lead.
The Swiss showed no signs of giving up and managed to score two goals in the final ten minutes of regulation time. At the 11:45 mark, with Czech defender Petr Šidlík in the penalty box for interference, Swiss captain Christoph Bertschy sent a high shot into the net to cut the Czech lead to one. Then at 17:39, Czech penalty by Marek Hrbas inadvertently sent the puck over the glass in the Czech end of the rink. The Swiss took full advantage of their opportunity and scored just twenty seconds into the power play. Marti blasted a puck from the point towards the Czech net and the rebound hit forward Dario Simion in the chest and deflected into the goal.
The valiant effort displayed by the Swiss failed to produce a win but the team did find out that it earned the right to play Russia in the quarterfinal on the 2nd. The winner of that match will face Sweden in the semi-final. The Czech Republic is also scheduled to play a quarterfinal match-up that day against the United States. The winner of that match will play Canada in the semi-final on January 3rd.