Switzerland notched an early, surprise win at the 2014 IIHF U18 World Championship but wasn't able to fully capitalize on their upset win over the USA. As a result, they will open the U18 playoff round against the defending gold medalists from Canada.
Although he did not place his name on the scoresheet during the preliminary round, Swiss defender Edson Harlacher was part of a defensive unit that allowed the opposition just 10 goals in the four preliminary games. A three-goal outburst by the Czech Republic in the the third period of the final game made the goals-against total slightly less impressive than it could have been, but the Swiss have been solid enough in their own end and in goal at this U18 that they could pin another upset loss on a team that takes them lightly.
Harlacher played for the WHL's Kamloops Blazers during the 2013-14 season. In 71 games, the defenseman posted nine assists, 44 penalty minutes, and a -27 rating. It was Harlacher's rookie season in the WHL after having spent the past three seasons in the Kloten organization in Switzerland.
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