Ottawa Citizen

Canada shocked at Spen­gler Cup

Over­time goal up­sets lock­out-loaded team in the open­ing game of Swiss tour­na­ment

- MITCH GOLDENBERG

DAVOS, Switzer­land • An open­ing game loss at the Spen­gler Cup hasn’t shaken the con­fi­dence of Team Canada.

Ja­son Pom­inville scored on a break­away three min­utes into over­time Wed­nes­day as Adler Mannheim shocked Canada with a 2-1 vic­tory.

Tyler Seguin scored the lone goal for Canada in the third pe­riod as the ros­ter loaded with NHL tal­ent had trou­ble find­ing its scor­ing touch, de­spite gen­er­at­ing plenty of chances.

“There’s no panic in us right now,” said Cana­dian for­ward Matt Duch­ene. “We all think we played a pretty good game, there were lots of bounces and op­por­tu­ni­ties that we just weren’t able to put in.”

Pom­inville, a locked-out mem­ber of the Buf­falo Sabres, ripped a low shot past Cana­dian goalie Jonathan Bernier to give the top team in the Ger­man league a sur­pris­ing vic­tory.

“I know Bernier a lit­tle bit, so there was a lot of mind play­ing go­ing on in the moment,” said Pom­inville af­ter the game. “I’m just glad it went in to get the big vic­tory for our team.”

First played in 1923, the Spen­gler Cup an­nu­ally pits Davos and Canada against four Euro­pean club teams in a six-day tour­na­ment in Switzer­land.

Dennis En­dras made 34 saves for Mannheim, in­clud­ing a break­away stop on Pa­trice Berg­eron mo­ments be­fore Pom­inville’s win­ner.

“You can’t ex­pect to win against Team Canada in the Spen­gler Cup,” said En­dras. “All of us bat­tled hard for 60 min­utes, we blocked a lot of shots to pre­vent their chances and it’s just awe­some to get the points.”

A fast-paced con­test with numer­ous chances on both sides, Mannheim opened the scor­ing on the power play with 4:06 re­main­ing in the first when Adam Mitchell tipped home a point shot past Bernier.

Canada fought back hard, but the lineup that in­cludes NHLers Ja­son Spezza, John Tavares, Sam Gag­ner, Ja­son Wil­liams and Duch­ene couldn’t find its range against En­dras.

“Give Mannheim a lot of credit,” said Duch­ene. “They played well de­fen­sively and their goalie made a lot of great saves.”

Canada looked shaky play­ing in their own zone in the first pe­riod, fail­ing to clear and be­ing pushed off the puck sev­eral times. But the de­fence sta­bi­lized as the game wore on and most of the ac­tion took place in Mannheim’s end.

The line of Spezza, Tavares and Gag­ner gen­er­ated plenty of scor­ing chances, while the com­bi­na­tion of Seguin, Berg­eron and By­ron Ritchie pro­vided Canada with its only goal.

Berg­eron found his Bos­ton Bru­ins team­mate with a cross-ice pass at 9:30 of the third and Seguin wired a shot past En­dras on the power play.

 ?? SAL­VA­TORE DI NOLFI/THE AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS, KEY­STONE ?? Team Canada’s Matt Duch­ene at­tempts a shot on Adler Mannheim goal­tender Dennis En­dras on Wed­nes­day.
SAL­VA­TORE DI NOLFI/THE AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS, KEY­STONE Team Canada’s Matt Duch­ene at­tempts a shot on Adler Mannheim goal­tender Dennis En­dras on Wed­nes­day.

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