Slovenia triumphs in shootout after blowing two-goal lead


It took 65 minutes-and then some-to decide a winner, but eventually, Slovenia beat Slovakia 3-2 after a shootout thanks to a game-winning goal from Ziga Jeglic.

A scoreless first period gave way to a flurry of penalties and goals in the final 40 minutes.

Slovenia opened the scoring with a power-play goal early in the second period when a boarding penalty carried over from the first. Blaz Gregorc unleashed a slap shot from the blue line that got though a screen to sneak through Branislav Konrad’s blocker side.

Slovenia doubled its lead soon after on another power play, as Jan Mursak fired a wrist shot through traffic that Anze Kuralt redirected in the slot.

But Slovakia pulled one back late in the second with a power-play goal of its own-and in very similar fashion. Peter Ceresnak uncorked a slap shot from blue line, which Milos Bubela tipped in between the blocker and pad of Gasper Kroselj.

Slovakia completed the comeback at 5:56 in the third period, when Marcel Hascak scored the first even-strength goal of the game. He fired a wrist shot through traffic, and it hit the corner high glove-side past a screened Kroselj.

Both sides fought to find the go-ahead score in a wild finish, but the game headed to overtime, still knotted at 2-2 after 60 minutes. The overtime period couldn’t break the deadlock either, leading to a shootout.

Rok Ticar scored to give Slovenia the lead, but Martin Bakos answered to keep Slovakia alive. It took until the sixth round to decide the winner: Jeglic beat Konrad to his glove side, giving Slovenia a hard-fought 3-2 win.

The result leaves Slovenia, Slovakia and the United States all deadlocked at four points apiece in Group B, meaning all three teams will miss out on a bye to the quarterfinals and will advance to the qualification playoffs.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Know something newsworthy? Report It!