Canada takes world juniors gold with 3-1 win over Sweden

BUFFALO, N.Y. – Canada has won the world junior hockey championship.

Tyler Steenbergen scored the winner with just 1:40 to play in regulation as the Canadians downed Sweden 3-1 on Friday in the gold-medal game.

It’s Canada’s first title since 2015.

Dillon Dube and Alex Formenton, into an empty net, also scored for Canada. Carter Hart made 35 saves for the win.

Tim Soderlund scored for Sweden.

Seven players on the Canadian roster were returnees from last year’s squad that settled for silver.

READ MORE: Canadian world juniors returnees looking for redemption when they face Sweden for gold

Sweden outshot Canada 16-9 in a scoreless first period, but both teams’ speed was on full display with several end-to-end rushes.

Dube put Canada ahead 1-0 less than two minutes into the second period when he took a pass from Jordan Kyrou on a 2-on-2 rush and split the defence before snapping a shot glove side on Filip Gustavsson.

Canada celebrates a goal against Sweden during the second period of the title game of the IIHF world junior hockey championships Friday, Jan. 5, 2018, in Buffalo, N.Y.

AP Photo/Jeffrey T. Barnes

The Swedes were outshooting the Canadians 24-11 at the halfway point of the second, and tied the game on their 25th shot with a short-handed goal from Soderlund.

Canada seemed to turn the tide in the second half of the middle frame, registering the final seven shots on net to make it 25-18 Sweden through 40 minutes, but went into intermission tied 1-1.

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The Canadians began the third period with a 1:19 of power-play time but were unable to produce anything. They had two more chances with the man advantage in the third and still couldn’t score, with Taylor Raddysh hitting the post with just over five minutes to play in regulation.

The game looked to be heading to overtime before Steenbergen deflected in a Connor Timmins point shot for the go-ahead goal, followed by Formenton’s empty netter only 26 seconds later.

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Earlier, the United States defeated the Czech Republic 9-3 for bronze.

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