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U.S., Canada, Finland advance to second record

5/7/2006 - NHL

RIGA, Latvia -- The United States beat winless Denmark 3-0
Sunday with goals from Andrew Alberts, Yan Stastny and Richard Park
to reach the second round at hockey's world championships along
with Canada, Finland and the Czech Republic.
Canada routed Norway 7-1 behind Sidney Crosby's goal and three
assists, joining the U.S. in the next round from Group D with 2-0
records with one game left. The Americans finish first-round play
against Canada on Tuesday.
The Czech Republic held on for a 5-4 win over Slovenia after
taking a 4-0 first-period lead, and Finland shut out host Latvia
5-0 in Group A games.
Finland combined tight penalty killing with a solid power play
to blank Latvia and assure its spot in the qualification round.
Latvia must get at least a tie against Slovenia on Tuesday to
advance.
The U.S. win avenged a startling loss in the prelims to Denmark
three years ago when the championships were in Finland.
U.S. goalie Craig Anderson, a backup with the Chicago Blackhawks
this season, made 19 saves for his first shutout in the tournament.
He gave up one goal in the opener against Norway.
"It was definitely an easy night," Anderson said."I only had
to make the first save, any rebound the defense cleared up and made
great plays. We really played well together as a team tonight. So
far it has worked fine for us in two games and we're going to try
to do the same in the next game."
Park, the U.S. captain, praised Anderson.
"Goaltending has been our biggest strength in this
tournament," Park said."We'll try to give him the outside shots
and clear the rebounds."
Canada, of course, will be much tougher for the Americans.
"It's going to be an all-around effort," Anderson said."With
this big ice, there are going to be a lot of chances offensively.
But it's going to be a little more physical against Canada. Even
with the bigger ice surface, I think it's going to come down to
defense and whoever makes more mistakes are going to lose."