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Monday, April 25, 2011

USA-Gold Sweden-Silver Russia-Bronze Canada- 4th

First off, congrats to the Americans for winning their third consecutive gold medal at the IIHF WJ U18 Championships. Although it took overtime for the victory, the Americans are deserving of the championship.

Canada however, wasn't so lucky in the bronze medal game against the Russians. Andrew D'Agostini got the start in goal over Malcolm Subban and Nail Yakpuov put on an offensive clinic against him.

However, Ryan Murphy put on a clinic of his own for Canada. After Nikita Kucherov opened the scoring at 11:36 with an unassisted goal, Murphy blasted a powerplay goal at 18:47 to even things up. Alan Quine assisted on Murphy's fourth of the tournament and that would end the first period.

At 3:07 of the second, Quine would score his first on the powerplay to put Canada up 2-1 on the powerplay with Mark Scheifele and Murphy drawing the assists. But the Yakupov show would take over with the Russians scoring 3 times in less than three minutes.

Yakupov got it started at 7:40 with the assist going to Roman Konkov. Yakupov would then set up Vladimir Tkachev at 8:24 to put the Russians ahead 3-2. Finally at 10:25 Yakupov would score short handed, his second of the game, from Tkachev to pull the Russians ahead by two. At 15:42 Kucherov would score his second from Mikhail Grigorenko and  Albert Yarullin to put the Russians up 5-2. Ryan Murray would score on the powerplay, his third, from Eric Locke to cut the lead to two before closing out the period.

Brett Ritchie would score his fourth at 18:20 to make it an interesting finish, Murphy drew the lone assist on the goal, his 13th point of the tournament which made him the highest scoring Canadian in the history of the tournament.

But it just wasn't enough as Yakupov would notch his third of the game from Kucherov to close out the scoring.

Murphy would be named the top defenseman in the tournament while Kucherov was named the top forward.

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