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World Cup Game Recap

Team Sweden defeats Team Finland

Loui Eriksson, Patric Hornqvist score two goals each in pretournament win

by Dan Rosen @drosennhl / NHL.com Senior Writer

GOTHENBURG, Sweden -- Team Sweden's second line accounted for eight points after its first power-play unit scored twice in a 6-3 victory against Team Finland at Scandinavium on Saturday in the second of three World Cup of Hockey 2016 pretournament games for each team.

Right wing Patric Hornqvist led Team Sweden with four points on two goals and two assists, matching the production from his linemates, Nicklas Backstrom and Filip Forsberg, who had a goal and two assists. Backstrom's goal at 11:54 of the third period was the game-winner. 

Right wing Loui Eriksson got Team Sweden going with two power play goals in the first period. He has three goals through the first two pretournament games.

"Obviously it builds some confidence," Hornqvist said. "I think our line played really well. We were on the right side of the puck the whole night, took it to the net and played good."

Video: FIN@SWE: Hornqvist goes top-shelf with a wrist shot

Team Finland got goals from defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen and center Mikko Koivu in the final 3:07 of the second period to cut what was a 3-0 deficit to 3-2. The comeback stalled in the third period, when Team Finland was held to two shots on goal.

Backstrom and Hornqvist scored 2:51 apart in the third to extend the lead back to three goals before team Finland center Erik Haula scored on a blue-line in breakaway at 16:34 to make it 5-3. Forsberg capped the scoring with an empty-net goal at 17:53.

Team Sweden limited Team Finland to 14 shots on goal in total. Henrik Lundqvist made 11 saves in his pretournament debut for Team Sweden. 

Team Finland goalie Tuukka Rask faced 28 shots, stopping 23 of them.

"There were a couple sequences where I felt like it was good positioning and I was reading the play well, and then there were a couple of chances where I was a little off," Lundqvist said. "I expected that. I expected this first game to be a building block. You have to start somewhere and then you look at tape, analyze a little bit and remind yourself a little bit what you need to do."

Video: FIN@SWE: Eriksson puts home a second power-play goal

Goal of the game: Eriksson's second power-play goal of the game at 18:06 of the first period was a sign of the chemistry he's creating with Henrik Sedin and Daniel Sedin. Eriksson set up shop in front of the net and turned, but he realized he needed to drift back to give himself space and to give Daniel Sedin a passing lane. He backed up and Sedin, who got the puck behind the net from his brother, threaded a pass. Ristolainen and defensemen Olli Maatta were caught in between and Koivu was too high to defend Eriksson. It was Eriksson's third goal in the two pretournament games; at least one or both of the Sedin twins assisted on all of them.

Save of the game: Lundqvist delivered the goods with a beauty of a save on Haula at 7:48 of the second period. Haula and linemates Lauri Korpikoski and Leo Komarov had some pretty tic-tac-toe passing on a 3-on-2 rush with Komarov setting up Haula for a chance in front. Lundqvist came back across the crease and closed his five-hole in time to rob Haula of a bang-bang redirect goal, preserving what was a 2-0 lead for Team Sweden at the time.

Unsung moment of the game: With Team Finland killing a penalty early in the first period, center Aleksander Barkov made a strong play to break up a pass and take the puck into the offensive zone for a potential scoring chance. He didn't get one because Team Sweden defenseman Erik Karlsson backchecked himself into the play and put a good shoulder hit on Barkov to knock him down and loosen up the puck so it could go the other way at 5:57.

Highlight of the game: Forsberg showed the home crowd some of his moves with a brilliant play and pass to set up Backstrom for his goal that put Team Sweden up 4-2. Forsberg got the puck in the offensive zone with Team Finland forward Joonas Donskoi covering him. He stopped and turned, eluding Donskoi before directing a backhanded pass to Backstrom, who was trailing into the zone. Backstrom carried the puck in and his shot hit off of Rask's glove and went into the net to give Team Sweden the cushion it needed. 

Video: FIN@SWE: Forsberg finds Backstrom for insurance goal

They said it

"For our team I think it was a really strong game. Good speed. Created a lot of chances. We had a stretch in the second period, late second, where they got going a little bit and had a couple power play opportunities, but overall we played really well. It was fun to finish this week off with a win here in Sweden, in Gothenburg. Off to the States." -- Team Sweden goaltender Henrik Lundqvist

"The result was bad, but I think that we played a better game than Thursday. I feel confident. We want to develop during these exhibition games along into the tournament. It's a major point that we are ready Sunday, the 18th of September against the young stars." -- Team Finland coach Lauri Marjamaki

"[Forsberg] is just a calm player. He's [22] years old and he plays like he's 30. He's so good with the puck. It almost looks sometimes like he's going to fall but he always has control of the puck and himself. He made some great plays. He likes to take the puck to the net too. I hope we can get a little better and create more from this game here." -- Team Sweden forward Patric Hornqvist  

Need to know: Eight of Team Sweden's 13 shots on goal in the first period came on the power play. It was 2-for-4 on the power play in the first and outshot Team Finland 13-2 overall. … Team Finland managed only 11 shots despite winning 33 of 52 faceoffs (63 percent). … Team Finland is 2-for-13 with 14 shots on goal the power play in the pretournament games. Team Finland is 2-for-8 with 12 shots. 

What's next

Team Finland: Flies to Washington on Sunday to begin preparations for its final pretournament game against Team USA at Verizon Center on Tuesday (7 p.m. ET; ESPN, SN1, TVA Sports).

Team Sweden: Flies to Washington on Sunday to begin preparations for its final pretournament game against Team Europe at Verizon Center on Wednesday (7 p.m. ET; ESPN3, SN360, TVA Sports 2).

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