SLOVAKIA (KDKA) — Penguins’ goaltender Matt Murray gave himself a 25th birthday gift Saturday afternoon – a 40-save performance against the Czech Republic in a 5-1 win for Team Canada at the World Championships.

Team Canada faced off against the Czechs in the semifinals of the 2019 IIHF World Championships Saturday with a berth in the gold medal game on the line.

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Although Canada would continue to build on their lead, by the third period they were up 4-0, in no period would the Canadians outshoot the Czechs. Murray faced 12 shots in the first, 12 in the second and 17 in third. He would not surrender a goal against until the 16:01 mark of the final frame.

With the win, Canada and Finland will face-off for the gold medal Sunday.

Taking place prior to the gold medal game, Evgeni Malkin and Russia will be facing off against Dominik Simon and the Czech Republic for the bronze medal.


Through nine games in the lead up to the bronze medal game, Penguins assistant captain Evgeni Malkin has one goal and five assists for six points.

Teddy Bleuger and Lativa did not qualify for the playoff, but in seven games he scored one goal and added three assists for four points.

Sweden and Patric Hornqvist lost a 5-4 overtime heart-breaker to Finland, but Hornqvist had himself a successful tournament, scoring seven goals and adding three assists for 10 points in just eight games. This tied for second in tournament goal scoring.