PORTAGE LA PRAIRIE, Man. – Fans at the PCU Centre were treated to a good old-fashioned shootout on Monday afternoon as Germany took home ninth place from the 2011 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge with an 8-5 win over Slovakia.
It’s the third year in a row there has been at least a dozen goals scored in the ninth-place game – Atlantic beat Finland 9-6 in 2009, and the Czech Republic handled the Finns 7-5 last year.
The wide-open style was on display on a Slovak power play midway through the first period; all five players on the ice touched the puck in succession before Milan Kolena netted the first of his two goals on the afternoon.
All in all, the game featured three lead changes and 13 goals by 10 different players – only Kolena and Germany’s Markus Eberhardt and John Koslowski made multiple appearances on the scoresheet.
It took Germany just 18 seconds to open the scoring off the stick of Frederik Tiffels, but goals from Kolena and Peter Hrehorcak made it a 2-1 game in favour of Slovakia after 20 minutes. Jan Blasko made it 3-1 early in the second period, but goals 27 seconds apart from Sven Ziegler and Benjamin Zientek brought the Germans back to even.
Slovakia retook the lead thanks to Tomas Palecek, but again the Germans struck back with a pair of quick goals, 32 seconds apart from Eberhardt and Koslowski, capping a wild period that saw six goals on 24 shots.
Kolena, Eberhardt and Koslowski all added their second goals in the third period, with Marcel Kurth scoring the other German goal.
Both teams, neither of whom participated in the 2010 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge, finished behind the pace they set into 2009, where the Germans placed sixth, and the Slovaks eighth.
(Nathan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)