This past weekend saw the last IIHF World Championship action before the opening of the 74th IIHF World Championship open in Germany (Gelsenkirchen, Cologne, Mannheim, May 7-23).
On Friday, the United States defeated Sweden 3-1 in the Gold Medal Game of the 2010 IIHF World U18 Championship in Minsk, Belarus to claim its second consecutive U18 title and fifth in the last nine years.
Team USA’s Jake Campbell became the first goaltender to win the World U20 as well as the World U18 title in the same season. Campbell, who also won the U18s last year at Fargo & Moorehead, USA, led the United States to the “World Juniors” gold in Saskatoon, Canada in January.
Also on Friday, Slovenia secured promotion to the top pool of the IIHF World Championship by defeating Hungary 4-1 in the decisive game at home in Group B of the IIHF World Championship Division I in Ljubljana, Slovenia. The Slovenians return to the Top-16 division after a two-year absence. They were relegated to Division I after finishing 15th in 2008 in Quebec City/Halifax, Canada.
On Sunday, Austria accompanied Slovenia to =”HFlinkstyle” href=”/teams/slovakia”>Slovakia 2011 by edging Ukraine 2-1 in Group A of the IIHF World Championship Division I in Tilburg, Netherlands. Defenseman Matthias Trattnig scored the game, championship and promotion winner with eight minutes of the tournament finale.
The Austrians, who were relegated last year in Switzerland 2009, made an immediate return to the Top-16 division and they will enjoy vast fan support at the 75th IIHF World Championship. Bratislava, the main venue of the 2011 IIHF World Championship, is virtually on the Austrian border, only 60 kilometres from Vienna, the Austrian capital.
Read all game stories and features from these three events on IIHF.com. Click here for all info on the 2010 IIHF World Championship in Germany and here for all exhibition games and results leading up to Germany 2010.
About the IIHF:
The IIHF, the governing body of international ice hockey and inline hockey, features 68 member associations, each of which is the national governing body of the sport in its nation. Besides controlling the international rulebook, processing international player transfers, and dictating officiating guidelines, the IIHF runs numerous development programs designed to bring hockey to a broader population. The IIHF also presides over ice hockey in the Olympic Games and over the IIHF World Championships at all levels, men, women, juniors under-20, juniors under-18 and women under-18. Each season, the IIHF in collaboration with its local organizing committees, runs around 25 different World Championships in the five different categories. Visit www.iihf.com.