Germany has gone down 2-0 against heavy favorites Russia in the world ice hockey championships group stages. The German underdogs put up quite a fight, however, taking more shots than their Russian opponents.
Germany put on perhaps their best display so far in the ice hockey world championships on Tuesday night, but it wasn't enough to avoid a narrow 2-0 defeat to Russia.
Russia scored its goals in the first and third periods. Nikolai Zherdev scored with a deflected shot in very late in the first and Alexej Tereshenko doubled the advantage on 51 minutes.
Germany, however, outshot their opponents 30-26 over the evening, perhaps a good sign ahead of their next game. That comes against the leaders of the group competing in Stockholm, tournament co-hosts Sweden. Other matches are being played in Helsinki, Finland.
"We actually played a good game," Cologne Sharks player Philipp Gogulla said after the match.
Malmo Redhawks player Alexander Barta sought to draw positives from the defeat as well.
"If we can muster a similar performance against Sweden, then we will again be in with a chance," Barta said. Germany won its opening game against Italy 3-0 and lost 3-2 to Latvia next time out, with the unbeaten Russian side representing a far sterner challenge than either past opponent.
The German side currently sits fifth in the eight-team Stockholm group, and has said its target for the competition is to qualify directly for the quarter-finals. To achieve this, coach Jakob Kölliker's side would have to climb to fourth position or higher by the end of the group phase.
An extra prize on offer for quarterfinalists is an automatic ticket to the 2014 Winter Olympics in Socchi, Russia.
msh/rc (AFP, dpa, SID)