Gauthier, Team Canada taking on Latvia

Prince George Cougars goalie Taylor Gauthier made 38 saves in the Team Canada nets and Peyton Krebs scored two goals in a 3-1 quarterfinal victory over Latvia Thursday at the IIHF world under-18 hockey championship in Umea, Sweden.

Krebs (Winnipeg Ice) was credited with the only goal of the second period, an own-goal that was put in by a Latvian defender. Defenceman Braden Schneider (Brandon Wheat Kings) opened the scoring 13:48 into the game.

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A power-play goal from Harijs Brants cut Canada's lead in half 10 minutes into the third period, but Krebs ended the suspense in the final minute with an empty-netter for his second of the game.

It was Gauthier's third win of the tournament and he was at his best in the third period in which the Latvians outshot Canada 16-13.

The 18-year-old from Calgary backstopped Canada to a 5-3 win over Finland in the tournament opener and was also in goal for a 7-4 win over Switzerland a week ago Friday.

Canada will play Sweden in a semifinal matchup Saturday (10:30 a.m. PT) in Ornskoldsvik. Sweden eliminated Cougars centre Matej Toman and the Czech Republic with a 4-2 quarterfinal playoff win Thursday.

The United States, 6-0 winners Thursday over the defending champion Finland, will face Russia in the other semifinal. The Russians beat Belarus 6-0 to advance.

The final will be played Sunday at 10:30 a.m. PT.

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