February 24, 2006
Finland blanks Russia in semifinal showdown
TURIN (Reuters) - Saku Koivu had a goal and an assist and
Antero Niittymaki made 21 saves as Finland shutout Russia 4-0
in Olympic men's hockey on Friday, setting the stage for an
unexpected all-Nordic gold medal final.
Finland, who have never won Olympic hockey gold, will face
off against their bitter sporting rivals Sweden on Sunday in a
golden showdown that is sure to ignite Nordic passions.
first appearance in the final since claiming their only Olympic
title at the 1994 Lillehammer Winter Games.
Russia, who knocked out defending gold medallist Canada in
the quarter-finals, will play the Czech Republic for the bronze
medal on Saturday.