Russia’s juniors have escaped a collapse at ice hockey world championships after beating the Swiss team in an extra-time shootout to claim the last semifinal spot.
Alexander Khokhlachev put the hosts ahead scoring on a power play early into the game. It took Christoph Bertschy four minutes to equalize taking advantage of Russia’s poor defensive play.
Russia restored their lead midway through the second after NHL No. 12 draft pick Mikhail Grigorenko netted his first goal of the tournament with a backhander.
Again, four minutes later shorthanded Switzerland leveled things on the ice, courtesy of Martin Ness who sent the puck past Tampa Bay Lightning prospect Andrey Vasilevsky.
The teams kept pushing as first Grigorenko and then Swiss forward Sven Andrighetto hit posts at each end of the rink.
Andrighetto made amends scoring in a stinging counter-attack mid-way through the final period putting Switzerland on the verge of the semi-finals but Nikita Kucherov, the best forward at the 2011 world under-18 championships, saved the day for the hosts less than two minutes before the buzzer.
Overtime didn’t make any difference and in the shootout two consecutive goals from Grigorenko and Kucherov gave Russia victory, 4-3.
In the other quarter-final the United States reduced the Czech Republic to powder, 7-0, securing asemi-final encounter with Canada, while the Russians will now try to take a revenge against Sweden who beat them in last year's final.
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