Team Canada beats Russians 4-1, advances to World Junior semi-final

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      Canada’s national junior hockey team wrapped up the preliminary round of the 2013 World Junior championship with a 4-1 win over host Russia this morning in Ufa.

      Dougie Hamilton, Mark Scheifele, Jonathan Drouin, and Jonathan Huberdeau scored the Canadian goals while Malcolm Subban made 21 saves in goal.

      Captain Ryan Nugent-Hopkins of Burnaby had two assists and leads the tournament with 11 points.

      Team Canada is 4-0 in the tournament and today’s victory ensured Canada finished in top spot in its pool and earned a direct trip to the semis.

      On Thursday, Canada will face the winner of the USA-Czech Republic quarter-final. The Russians will play Switzerland in another quarter-final match-up. The winner of that game will play defending-champion Sweden which finished in first place in its pool.

      The gold-medal game is slated for 5 a.m. (Pacific time) on Saturday (January 5). Canada has not struck gold at the World Juniors since the 2009 tournament in Ottawa.