International Ice Hockey Federation

Fast Koreans impress

Fast Koreans impress

Asians open tournament with win vs. Poland

Published 22.04.2017 21:51 GMT+3 | Author Martin Merk
Fast Koreans impress
South Korean #15 SIN Sangwoo. Photo: Andrey Basevich
Korea came to Kyiv to surprise and it started its 2017 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship Division I Group A campaign well with a 4-2 win against Poland.

Poland outshot the Koreans 38-22 but only managed twice to beat Korea goalie Matt Dalton.

“I feel pretty tired now. It’s important for us to get the three points and hopefully we can build on that as the tournament goes on,” said Dalton, who is in his third year with Korean Asia League club Anyang Halla.

While Poland lacked of efficiency in front of Dalton, the Koreans made it better when Kisung Kim scored the only goal of the first period at 7:51.

While the Poles were working on a comeback, the Koreans defended well and tried to be ready for fast counter-attacks. At 7:07 of the middle frame one worked out. A nice backhand shot from the right face-off dot from Sangwoo Sin went in deflected by the stick of Polish defenceman Jakub Wanacki.

To the joy of the Polish fans who travelled to Kyiv their team eventually found the way onto the scoreboard on a two-man advantage. After a drop pass from Grzegorz Pasiut it was Mateusz Bryk who beat Dalton on the glove side at 14:39.

Korea had a strong start into the third period and at 2:07 extended the lead. Young Jun Lee intercepted a pass, sent the puck left to Michael Swift who fed Young Jun Lee for the 3-1 goal with a top-right shot.

Four minutes later the puck was into the Polish net again. Sangwook Kim deked Polish defenceman Patryk Wajda with nice stickhandling and scored through Przemyslaw Odrobny’s five-hole.

“We had a bad start, we were not focused enough,” Krzysztof Zapala explained why Poland lost the game. “When you’re behind against Korea it’s tough because they play very fast, maybe too fast. We lost the first game but we have four other games and will fight.”

The Poles were not ready to give up and with a shot from just after the blue line defenceman Bartlomiej Pociecha brought his team back. But it was still 4-2 for Korea.

With 2:04 left Swift was sent to the sin bin for tripping and Polish head coach Jacek Plachta took his time-out and pulled the goalie half a minute later to play with 6-on-4 skaters but the 4-2 score remained until the final buzzer.


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