Matt Krahn played key roles in Canada West’s 3-2 win over Sweden Thursday night at the World Junior A Challenge in Penticton. The win moves Canada West to Saturday’s semi-final against arch rival USA.
Krahn, who plays with OCN Blizzard, was steady in the Canadian net facing a total of 33 Swedish shots – 16 of those coming in a very busy second period. Team Canada tightened up in the third and allowed only five shots on goal.
“They came hard at us in the second,” said Krahn. “We saw what they could bring and the guys really tightened it up in the third. We were really hard on the forecheck. I was good to get the win.”
Krahn, who played his midget with Winnipeg Wild, suited up for Team West at the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge. He came home with a bronze medal after TW defeated Team Pacific in the final at London, Ont.
“I knew what to expect from European players,” said Krahn. “They shoot from everywhere….they all seem to do a little toe-drag and fire. That (Under 17s) really helped me here.”
Krahn said the atmosphere has been fantastic at the South Okanagan Events Centre – last night nearly 2,000 took in the game.
“It’s really loud,” said Krahn. “Just about as loud as OCN.”
Meanwhile, Canada West will now focus their game plan on defending against Team USA.
“They’ll come hard at us,” said Krahn. “We played them in an exhibition game….they’re fast. It will be a good game.”