Finland tops Latvia 2-1 in hockey qualifier

After taking a first-period lead, Latvia nonetheless fell 2-1 to Finland during a high-fire May 9 qualifying round game in the 2008 International Ice Hockey Federation World Championship in Halifax, Canada.

More than 90 shots on goal were attempted by the two teams during the game, 64 by Finland and 27 by Latvia.

Latvia got on the scoreboard 1 minute, 47 seconds into the game, when Lauris Dārziņš scored with help from Miķelis Rēdlihs and Rodrigo Laviņš, according to statistics compiled by the IIHF.

Finland replied in the second period. At 9:21 into the period, Antti Pihlstrom shot the puck past Latvian goalie Edgars Masaļskis. Janne Niskala and goalkeeper Niklas Backstrom earned the assists.

At 10:04 into the third period, N. Kapanen got Finland’s second goal with help from Sami Lepisto and Pihlstrom.

Latvian players spent a total of 26 minutes in the penalty box, compared to 14 minutes for Finland.

In the qualifying round, Latvia next faces Norway in a game set at 12:30 p.m. May 11 in Halifax Metro Centre, Halifax, Nova Scotia. After that Latvia goes up against Germany in a match scheduled at 8:15 p.m. May 12 also in Halifax.

Andris Straumanis is a special correspondent for and a co-founder of Latvians Online. From 2000–2012 he was editor of the website.

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