Published: Sun, February 18, 2018
Sports | By Nelson Rowe

Team Canada coach Willie Desjardins wants more consistency against Czechs

Team Canada coach Willie Desjardins wants more consistency against Czechs

The Olympic Athletes from Russian Federation scored a 4-0 men's hockey victory over the United States on Saturday to win Group B at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea. After scoring a pair of power-play goals in the first period, Team Canada couldn't do anything against Czech goalie Pavel Francouz, who stopped 31 shots in regulation and overtime and four of five shootout attempts.

In a game that brilliantly wavered between exciting and excruciating - especially when the stakes ratcheted through overtime and a shootout - ultimately Canada couldn't complete the task.

Ice Hockey - Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympics - Men's Preliminary Round Match - Canada v Czech Republic - Gangneung Hockey Centre, Gangneung, South Korea - February 17, 2018 - Canadian (in black) and Czech Republic players shake hands after the game. "Like if you give everything you've got, then what happens happens and you move on to the next game and you look for some adjustments and you come back ready". Saying that, we'll go out hard every night and obviously try and get our points. Now we just move ahead. Noreau actually beat Francouz with Canada's final shot but the puck bounced off the goalpost.

"We had one (goal against) with a couple chances to clear it and a sharp-angle shot that I probably want to have (back)", said Scrivens.

Rene Bourque and Wojtek Wolski scored two goals each and Ben Scrivens made 28 saves, giving Hockey Canada a flawless start to its first Olympic campaign without NHL participation since Lillehammer '94.

Sporting News Canada will provide live updates throughout Canada's game against the Czech Republic beginning Friday at 10 pm ET.

The Czechs made up for Francouz's miscue less than six minutes later when Dominik Kubalik netted the equalizer.

Still, Russia, the United States and now Canada have all lost in the preliminary round. Rene Bourque, who played 12 seasons in the National Hockey League, tapped in a rebound on a shot from the point by Maxim Noreau with one second remaining on a holding penalty to Jakub Nakladal. Group play ends Sunday with the Czechs facing Switzerland and the Canadians up against the South Koreans. Each team killed a penalty in the third period on the way to over-time.

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