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Sports

German ice hockey team hoping for more after reaching quarterfinals

After an impressive tournament so far, Germany will face hosts Russia in the quarterfinals of the world ice hockey championship. Despite their form, Germany will go into the match as clear underdogs.

Germany had made the quarterfinals for the first time since 2011 even before they played Hungary on Monday, while Russia overcame a sluggish start to beat Sweden 4-1 on Tuesday and set up the last eight tie.

Earlier in the week, defending champions Canada had shut out France 4-0, ending French hopes of advancing beyond the group stage. Canada will now play Sweden.

In the other quarterfinal ties, Finland will play Scandinavian rivals Denmark while the USA will play the Czech Republic.

Despite qualification being assured on Monday, Germany coach Marco Sturm's men nonetheless put in a workmanlike performance, coming back from a one-goal deficit to beat the Hungarians 4-2 on goals from Patrick Hager, Denis Reul, Constantin Braun, and the captain, Marcel Goc.

The result meant that Germany finished in third place in Group B.

Aiming higher

Despite their achievements thus far, Germany know that they will go into the quarterfinals as the clear underdogs. Still, Goc said his team wanted more.

"Yeah, we're happy we've moved on to the next round. But we can't be satisfied with that," Goc said in an interview on the International Ice Hockey Federation's website before Russia were confirmed as Germany's opponents.

"We know it's going to be a tough nation and we're probably going to be the underdog in that quarterfinal game. But we've just got to throw everything against them that we have."

The captain added, that he expected goalie Thomas Greiss to shine again and that he hoped they would be able to bury some of their chances at the other end of the rink.

The Germans, though, have been hit by injuries, meaning they will be without Arizona Coyotes forward Tobias Rieder, as well as German Elite League (DEL) players Gerrit Fauser and Torsten Ankert for the quarterfinal.

pfd/ (dpa, SID)