Team Finland laid down the hammer earlier today dominating Team Slovakia 8-1 following a tough loss to the Swedish on Boxing Day.
The scoring opened on the powerplay for Finland at the 4:54 mark of the first period. The Finnish got the Slovakian netminder – Samuel Vyletelka – moving and eventually beat him with a goal from Patrik Puistola (Carolina Hurricanes). Sampo Ranta (Colorado Avalanche) had a great chance to make it 2-0 shortly after but was denied by Vyletelka on a partial breakaway. The Finnish did make 2-0, however, before the end of the period. A phenomenal solo effort from Ranta turned the puck down the ice quickly creating a chance for himself. His first chance was stopped, but the rebound was put home by Aku Raty (Arizona Coyotes).
In the second period, Finland blew the doors off and got themselves out to a 7-1 lead. Aatu Raty scored the highlight goal of the bunch with a wrap-around attempt which made it 4-0 to Finland. Joonas Oden, Mikko Kokkonen (Toronto Maple Leafs), Eemil Erholtz, and Aku Raty (Arizona Coyotes) – his second of the game – also got on the board for the Finnish. The Slovakians chose to pull Vyletelka after Erholtz goal and was replaced by Samuel Hlavaj.
Slovakia did have some success in the period ending Justus Annunen (Colorado Avalanche) bid for a shutout. That goal came from Robert Dzugan late in the period.
There was only one goal in the third period to report. Ville Petman went end-to-end shorthanded and beat Hlavaj for an early contender for goal of the tournament.
Next up, the Finnish back in action again tomorrow vs Team Kazakstan.