Russians rebound, rout Slovenia 8-2; US next


Entering Saturday, the last time the USA men's ice hockey team faced Russian Federation at the Olympics, T.J. Oshie scored four times in six shootout attempts to help the US secure the win during preliminary round play at the Olympic Winter Games Sochi 2014.

Slovenia was coming off a 3-2 overtime win over the Americans, but was overmatched on Friday.

Russian hockey team beat the US in the group stage match of the Olympic tournament with a score of 4:0 and got into the finals.

This will be a rematch of the first Group B contest between the two in the preliminary round last Saturday, when Switzerland pounded the overmatched Korea 8-0.

The Olympic Athletes from Russian Federation won Group B with the resounding win over the United States.

The 23rd Winter Olympic Games kicked off in PyeongChang with an official opening ceremony on February 9 and will conclude on February 25.

With NHL talent absent for the first time since 1994 over money issues and injury fears, a young USA squad with four college stars and mostly Europe-based talent faced an all-star lineup from Russia's two best clubs, including five-time Olympians and ex-NHL stars Kovalchuk and Pavel Datsyuk.

Yelena Dergachyova had a goal and two assists.

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But the fact of the matter is the USA faces a long climb to get to that gold medal game.

Slovenia and Slovakia made worldwide headlines on the first day of the Olympics men's hockey tournament. For a while in the first period, there were even two large banners depicting the face of Russian President Vladimir Putin and messages of support for the Russian team.

The Swiss equalised with less than 10 seconds played in the second period after Alina Muller collected a Christine Meier pass and wove her way past three defenders before flicking a backhanded shot over Russian goaltender Nadezhda Alexandrova.

Los Angeles Kings 2012 draft pick Nikolai Prokhorkin scored the Russians' first two goals in a dominant performance that US coach Tony Granato and players didn't think was as lopsided as the score.

The Russians answered when Kulishova tapped a rebound into the open net behind Schelling at 13:53. The Russians hemmed the its zone late, and the fatigue took its toll as the game went on.

Finland, which hasn't medaled since taking bronze in 2010, added two goals each in the second and third.

Sergei Mozyakin got the Russians started with a laser shot off Pavel Datysuk's pass at 18:23 of the first period, and it took just 22 seconds for Ilya Kovalchuk to make it 2-0.