Team Slovakia was quick to recover from a defeat at the hands of the United States with a decisive 5-2 victory over Team Germany. Off the back of another stellar performance, this time from Montreal Canadiens prospect Martin Reway, who posted a hat trick with only four shots on net, the Slovaks claim their second victory on their last group fixture.
Starting off the scoring with an impressive display of skills, Slovakian forward Robert Lantosi showed his moves in his effort to beat German goalie Ilja Sharipov, tucking the puck neatly on the right side of Sharipov after a breakout pass that saw him cruise unimpeded by German defenders from center ice. Martin Reway would add a second goal, and the Slovaks would pot another one off an impressive passing display in front of the net that saw Matus Sukel score his first of the tournament. Germany would take one goal back on a double minor penalty assessed to Slovakian forward Peter Cehlarik before period’s end. As the first period came to a close, Slovakia had scored more goals than in their whole tournament so far, taking a 3-1 lead over Germany.
The second period would be relatively quiet, with the Slovaks only taking two penalties that would not result in any gain for the Germans, though the two teams would go on to exchange shots on net, with the Slovaks leading 12-10 in shots for the second period.
In the third, a costly mistake from German goalie Ilja Sharipov would put the game too far for the Germans to return, as a giveaway directly to goal-scorer Martin Reway while an attempt to handle the puck behind the net went awry. The Germans would go on to add a second tally from a penalty shot, masterfully executed by Western Michigan Broncos’ forward Frederick Tiffels for his second goal of the night. It would be a consolation prize for the Germans, as Martin Reway would add an empty-netter to cap off the score for the night.
The win sees the Slovaks clinch third place in a strong group composed of perennial favorites Canada and United States, as well as defending gold medalist Finland., Slovakia will face off against the eventual second seed from Group B. Germany wraps up their group play against Finland on New Year’s Eve to decide who will move on to the quarterfinals, and who will play in the relegation round, a three-game playoff, to make way for Belarus in next year’s tournament.