International Ice Hockey Federation

Carter ties record in 6-0 win

Luongo impressive as playoff auditions continue

Published 15.02.2014 01:29 GMT+4 | Author Andrew Podnieks
Carter ties record in 6-0 win
SOCHI, RUSSIA - FEBRUARY 14: Canada's Sidney Crosby #87, Patrick Marleau #12 and Jeff Carter #77 celebrate after a second period goal against Austria's Bernhard Starkbaum #29 during men's preliminary round action at the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games. (Photo by Jeff Vinnick/HHOF-IIHF Images)
Jeff Carter scored the first Olympic hat trick in a period in 22 years and Roberto Luongo was solid in goal as Canada took care of Austria to the tune of 6-0.

Patrick Marleau assisted on all three Carter scores. The team also got goals from the same two defencemen - both right-handed shots - from game one, Shea Weber and Drew Doughty.

"We feel better as a team," said Ryan Getzlaf. "We've been to a lot of these events and we know we got to get better as the tournament goes on. We have to minimize those little mistakes. We knew we could score more goals, but it was also about keeping them out of our net. That's a big thing for us, and Roberto made some big saves tonight."

Roberto Luongo recorded his second career Olympic shutout by stopping all 23 shots, exactly half the number Canada sent the way of two Austrian goaltenders, Bernhard Starkbaum (two periods) and Mathias Lange (a goalless third period).

"They had a few chances off the rush," Luongo noted of his opponents, "but the guys were back-checking hard and pressuring them into making quick plays, which gives me an opportunity to be more aggressive and challenge the shooter."

Canada now plays the late game against Finland on Sunday to decide the winner of Group B, while earlier in the day Austria wraps up its preliminary round with a tilt against Norway.

"Finland are the strongest opponent so far," said Getzlaf, "so it's a good test for us. We know what they bring, and we know a lot of their personnel. It should be fun to play."

Make no mistake - while coach Mike Babcock tinkers with his lineup and his lines - the players are auditioning for a full-time spot on the team starting after the preliminary round.

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Canada’s speed and passing continued to improve to the point that Austria had difficulty controlling the puck in Canada's end much of the night.

The Canadians opened the scoring at 5:24 off a Jonathan Toews faceoff win. The puck came back to the point where Drew Doughty skipped a snap shot at the goal which eluded Bernhard Starkbaum, a weak goal to give up. It was the third of Canada’s four goals so far scored by a defenceman, and the second for Doughty.

Make that four of five. Five minutes later, it was Shea Weber who made it 2-0. Corey Perry brought the puck in over the line and did the smart thing by making a simple drop pass to the man with the hardest shot in the game. Weber wired a slapper with such velocity it went in and out in the blink of an eye. The goal was confirmed by video review.

"It was just a crazy goal," Luongo said. "I've been watching Shea practice all week. When he shoots, if he doesn't hit you, it's a goal. He could be the leading scorer in this tournament if only he'd shoot more."

Carter scored a natural hat trick in the second period as part of a four-goal outburst by the Canadians to put the game away. On the first, he finished a nice passing play between Sidney Crosby and Patrick Marleau at 2:39.

On the second, an error by Starkbaum behind his goal led to another Marleau-Carter finish from in close. He got his third in a row at 14:33, becoming the first player to do so since Czechoslovakia’s Petr Rosol on 8th February 1992 versus Norway.

"My linemates did a great job of winning races to the puck, winning puck battles, and getting pucks to the net, and I guess you could say I was the recipient of their hard work," Carter said. "It was good. "

Ryan Getzlaf finished the scoring with a great solo dash while Jamie Benn was serving a double minor for high sticking.

Canada played keepaway most fo the third, but Luongo was called upon to make his best save of the night midway through when he stoned Oliver Setzinger on a breakaway.