Josh
Bell
May 5, 2021

World U18s: 3 Stars of the Semifinals

The gold medal match is set for the 2021 IIHF World Under-18 Hockey Championship is set.

The semifinal day kicked off with underagers Shane Wright and Connor Bedard taking on Fabian Lysell and the Swedish team. After a 12-1 thumping from Canada when they met in the preliminary round, many thought that this would be a much different game. While the game looked like it might closer, it ended up looking pretty close to the same with Canada once again bombarding Sweden, winning 8-1.

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After putting up five points in the last game Bedard continued to dominate with a hat trick in this game. Also continuing an impressive tournament, team captain Wright collected a goal and three assists to bring his point total to 11 points in just four games. Yeah, we’re impressed. Also helping Canada was Brennan Othmann with a goal and assist, while Chase Stillman, Francesco Pinelli, and Connor Roulette also added goals. Isak Rosen had the lone goal for Sweden.

MORE: WORLD U18S: 10 STANDOUTS FROM THE PRELIMINARY ROUND

In the second semifinal matchup of the day, Matvei Michkov and the Russians battled Samu Tuomaala‘s Team Finland for the final spot in the gold medal match. Despite a late-game push from Finland, Russia held on to win this one 6-5, securing their gold medal berth. Ivan Miroshnichenko‘s two goals in the third period won the game for the Russians, with captain Nikita Chibrikov chipping in three points (two goals, one assist),

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Finnish goaltender Aku Koskenvuo did all he could in this game, with 32 saves, but was overpowered by the Russian offense. On top of Miroschnichenko and Chibrikov’s offense, Fyodor Svechkov, Prokhor Poltapov and Nikita Novikov had two assists, with Daniil Lazutin potting a goal and an assist. Michkov collected his 11th goal of the tournament, now sitting just three back of the all-time record set by Alex Ovechkin and Cole Caufield.

The medal games will kick off tomorrow, Thursday, May 6:

  • Bronze medal game: Sweden vs. Finland – 5:00 PM EST
  • Gold medal game: Canada vs. Russia – 9:00 PM EST

Here are FCHockey’s Three Stars of the Day, presented by SummerSkates – Show Your Game.

Third star: Ivan Miroshnichenko (RUS)

A steady presence for the Russians all tournament, Miroshnichenko hasn’t received the love that some other underagers in this tournament have. But tonight, with the 2022 NHL Draft-eligible’s two third-period goals, the Russians were able to hold on for the win 6-5. His final goal stood up to be the game-winner for Team Russia as well. The young forward has quietly put up eight points (six goals, two assists) in this tournament, good for fifth on this high-powered offensive team. And to think that we almost didn’t get to see Miroschnichenko in this tournament at all due to border issues.

Second star: Shane Wright (CAN)

This is only the fourth game for the Canadian captain in this tournament, but Wright has made every game count and tonight he tacked on four points (one goal, three assists) to his impressive tournament. The centerman now has 11 points (seven goals, four assists) in the World U18s, nearly a three-point per game pace. Wright has proven to be one of the best players in this event, and heading into the gold medal game, he should be a key figure for Team Canada.

First star: Connor Bedard (CAN)

It’s safe to say that Bedard has found his game. After collecting five points in the quarterfinal matchup versus the Czech Republic, the 2023 NHL Draft-eligible picked up a hat trick tonight, giving him eight points in two games and 12 points (six goals, six assists) in six games. Plus, considering that Bedard is the lone U16 prospect in this event, his is even more impressive.

Now with 12 points, he’s only two points back of Connor McDavid‘s 14-point U16 record in this tournament, adding to the amazement of what we’re witnessing in this tournament. McDavid had eight goals and six assists in 2013, the last time Canada won the gold medal in this event.

Honorable mentions

Nikita Chibrikov (RUS), Aleksi Heimoslami (FIN), Joakim Kemell (FIN), Aku Koskenvuo (FIN), Carl Lindbom (SWE), Brennan Othmann (CAN), Prokhor Poltapov (RUS), Samu Salminen (FIN), Fyodor Svechkov (RUS)

Highlight of the Night

We’ve seen Michkov do it earlier in this tournament, but now Othmann is getting in on the fun, potting a between-the-legs goal against Carl Lindbom and the Swedes en route to the semifinal win and gold medal berth. One of eight goals Canada scored in this game, the between-the-legs marker is always a fan favorite.

WORLD U18 SCORING LEADERS

POINTS

T1. Matvei Michkov (RUS) – 13 (11 goals, two assists)

T1. Nikita Chibrikov (RUS) – 13 (four goals, nine assists)

2. Connor Bedard (CAN) – 12 (six goals, six assists)

T3. Shane Wright (CAN) – 11 (seven goals, four assists)

T3. Mason McTavish (CAN) – 11 (five goals, six assists)

T3. Samu Tuomaala (FIN) – 11 (five goals, six assists)

T3. Danila Yurov (RUS) – 11 (four goals, seven assists)

T3. Francesco Pinelli (CAN) – 11 (four goals, seven assists)

GOALS

1. Matvei Michkov (RUS) – 11

T2. Shane Wright (CAN) – 7

T2. Samu Salminen (FIN) – 7

T3. Danila Klimovich (BLR) – 6

T3. Connor Bedard (CAN) – 6

T3. Ivan Miroshnichenko (RUS) – 6

ASSISTS

1. Nikita Chibrikov (RUS)– 9

T2. Francesco Pinelli (CAN) – 7

T2. Danila Yurov (RUS) – 7

T3. Connor Bedard (CAN) – 6

T3. Corson Ceulemans (CAN) – 6

T3. Olen Zellweger (CAN) – 6

T3. Mason McTavish (CAN) – 6

T3. Aleksi Heimosalmi (FIN) – 6

T3. Ville Koivunen (FIN) – 6

T3. Fyodor Svechkov (RUS) – 6

T3. Samu Tuomaala (FIN) – 6

FCHOCKEY’S 3 STARS OF THE DAY

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