Nordh shines as Sweden advances to Final at Hlinka Gretzky Cup
Noel Nordh was buzzing during Sweden’s semifinal game against Czechia on Friday at the Hlinka Gretzky Cup.
Nordh’s early second period goal seemed to lift the rest of his team and set the stage for a strong finish by the Swedish team and lead them to a 6-2 victory against Czechia, cementing their spot in the final against Canada on Saturday.
Otto Stenberg had himself another strong game, too, by registering two more goals and four in total for the tournament.
Canada punched its ticket into a date with Sweden in the Hlinka gold-medal match with a 4-1 win over Finland in the other tournament semifinal, with Ethan Gauthier being the difference-maker yet again for the Canucks. Gauthier had a highlight-reel goal at the end of the first period with only 17 seconds left to uplift the Canadian side going into the intermission.
3RD STAR: OTTO STENBERG – SWEDEN
Stenberg again proved to be a difference-maker for his team as he had a solid outing in the semifinal game versus Czechia. His two goals proved to be crucial during a tightly-contested match. He scored an instrumental goal in the third period at a time when the Czechs were gaining momentum and applying pressure when only trailing by one goal.
“Stenberg sniped the game-winning goal late in the third, capping off a nice performance that saw him be effective throughout whenever he had the puck on his stick,” FCHockey scout Derek Neumeier said.
2ND STAR: ETHAN GAUTHIER – CANADA
Gauthier did what Ethan Gauthier does in every game he played at the Hlinka Gretzky Cup, and that was work relentlessly, aggravate the opposing team, and score goals. He ended the evening with one goal and one penalty. Gauthier’s highlight reel goal in the first — where he cut hard to the net while beating one defender, then attacked the blue paint and made a beauty backhand shot to beat Eemil Vinni upstairs — seemed to spark the Canadian’s, who picked up their play in the second period.
“Gauthier scored one of the most beautiful goals of the entire tournament,” Neumeier said. “By opening the scoring against Finland it opened the floodgates a little for the Canadian side, giving them a lead they would never relinquish.”
1ST STAR: NOEL NORDH – SWEDEN
Nordh was buzzing against Czechia and was noticeable every shift he was one. It may not have been displayed on the game sheet, where he only registered one goal, but he definitely left his mark. Nordh’s early second period goal seemed to slow the onslaught by the Czech side, who were relentless in their attack up until that point against the Swedes.
“Nordh had a big goal in the second period against Czechia, and used his impressive combination of size and speed at other points in the game to push his opponents back on their heels,” Neumeier said.
DAY ONE: WHITELAW SHINES ON DAY ONE OF HLINKA GRETZKY CUP
DAY TWO: SALE CONTINUES STRONG PLAY ON DAY TWO AT HLINKA GRETZKY CUP
DAY THREE: THEO LINDSTEIN SHOWS STRONG PLAY ON DAY THREE OF HLINKA
DAY FOUR: HRABAL COMES UP BIG ON DAY FOUR OF HLINKA GRETZKY CUP
SEMIFINAL: NORDH SHINES AS SWEDEN ADVANCES TO FINAL AT HLINKA GRETZKY CUP