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Copp puts on show with four goals as Jets beat Canucks – TSN

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VANCOUVER — A four-goal performance by Andrew Copp lifted the Winnipeg Jets to a dominant 5-1 victory over the Vancouver Canucks Wednesday.

Copp had a pair of power-play strikes in the second and two more goals in the third to give the Jets (20-11-2) their second-straight win over the Canucks.

Mark Scheifele also scored for the Jets.

Connor Hellebuyck stopped 38 shots for Winnipeg and Thatcher Demko had 31 saves for the Canucks (16-18-3).

Vancouver got on the board with 1:25 left to play as Nils Hoglander drove a puck past Hellebuyck in tight.

Winnipeg also topped Vancouver 4-0 on Monday.

The Canucks pulled Demko with more than five minutes left on the clock in favour of an extra attacker on Wednesday.

Copp completed the hat trick 15:50 into the third, sending a bouncing puck from the Jets blue line sailing into the empty Canucks net.

His fourth of the night came with less than three minutes to go when he beat Demko with a backhanded shot in tight.

Hoglander responded for Vancouver 18:35 into the third, blasting a shot past Hellebuyck in the slot for the Canucks’ lone goal of the night.

A trio of goals in the middle frame proved to be the Canucks undoing Wednesday.

Copp registered Winnipeg’s first of the night on a power play 5:53 into the second period after Vancouver was called for too many men.

Neal Pionk wound up and unleashed a blast from the blue line and Copp, stationed in the slot, deflected it in to get the Jets on the board.

A similar situation unfolded five minutes later. Once again, the Canucks were called for too many men and once again the Jets capitalized, with Copp knocking in a rebound.

Winnipeg was 2 for 3 with the man advantage on Wednesday. Vancouver failed to capitalize on two power plays.

The Jets added another strike before the second intermission.

Demko came up high in his creased to challenge a shot from Blake Wheeler and made a solid stop with his left skate. But Scheifele was there to collect the rebound and pop it in to give Winnipeg a 3-0 lead.

There weren’t any goals in the first period Wednesday, but there was a little bit of drama.

Just 23 seconds into the game, Wheeler limped to the bench after taking a slap shot from Alex Edler off his foot. Wheeler stayed on the Winnipeg bench but appeared to be in some serious pain.

Near the end of the first, Canucks big man Zack MacEwen dropped the gloves with Logan Stanley. The pair exchanged blows before MacEwen dropped the Jets defenceman to the ice. They were each handed five-minutes for fighting.

The Canucks will now get a brief reprieve. Their next game comes March 31 when they host the Flames. Meanwhile, the Jets are headed to Calgary where they’ll take on the Flames on Friday.

NOTES: Bo Horvat returned to the Canucks lineup after missing much of the third Monday. He took a slap shot to the foot early in the period and couldn’t put weight on his left leg as he headed to the dressing room. … Jets defenceman Tucker Poolman played his 100th NHL game.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 24, 2021.

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Olympics-U.S. women to face Australia in women’s football at Tokyo Games

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(Reuters) – The U.S. women’s national team will face Australia, Sweden and New Zealand at this summer’s Tokyo Olympics, while in the men’s competition 2016 winners Brazil will take on Germany following the group stage draw on Wednesday.

The American women’s team are the reigning world champions and four-time winners of the Olympic tournament and will start as favourites in Tokyo, with Rio 2016 winners Germany failing to qualify.

Team GB women have drawn 2016 bronze medallists Canada, Chile and hosts Japan. Making only their second Olympic tournament appearance, Team GB will be led by England’s interim coach Hege Riise.

On the men’s side, Brazil will take on Germany, Ivory Coast and Saudi Arabia.

Mexico, the 2012 gold medallists, were pitted against hosts Japan, South Africa and France.

The men’s team are usually restricted to selecting players under the age of 23, with just three overage players allowed.

However, the age bracket has been raised for the Tokyo Games in line with the one-year postponement of the event due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

(Reporting by Hardik Vyas in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge)

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Rafael Nadal rallies from set down to advance in Barcelona

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Top seed Rafael Nadal rallied from a set back to beat Ilya Ivashka of Belarus 3-6, 6-2, 6-4 on Wednesday in the second round at the Barcelona Open in Spain.

Nadal lost serve in the opening game of the match and wasn’t able to break Ivashka’s serve throughout the first set. He won just 70.6 percent of points on his first serve, was broken twice and had two double faults in an uncharacteristically poor showing on service in the opening set.

By the second set, he had righted his serve, winning 86.7 percent of points on his first serve in the second set and 83.3 percent in the third. He didn’t face a break point in either set.

In other action, No. 2 seed Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece, No. 3 Andrey Rublev of Russia, No. 4 Diego Schwartzman of Argentina, No. 6 Pablo Carreno Busta of Spain and No. 10 Felix Auger-Aliassime of Canada were among those advancing.

No. 9 Fabio Fognini of Italy defaulted for verbal abuse. He was losing 6-0, 4-4 to Zapata Miralles of Spain when the line judge reported him for swearing after a foot fault. He had been warned earlier in the match

Serbia Open

Top seed and home-country favorite Novak Djokovic needed just 68 minutes to top South Korean Soon-woo Kwon 6-1, 6-3 and advance to the quarterfinals in Belgrade, Serbia.

Djokovic capitalized on five of his eight service break opportunities in the win. In the next round, he’ll meet fellow Serb Miomir Kecmanovic, the eighth seed, who needed three sets to oust Arthur Rinderknech of France 6-3, 3-6, 6-3.

Also advancing was the No. 2 seed, Matteo Berrettini, who defeated fellow Italian Marco Cecchinato 6-4, 6-3. Fifth seed Filip Krajinovic beat Nikola Milojevic 6-1, 6-1 in an all-Serb match.

 

(Field Level Media)

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Ice hockey-Women’s world championships cancelled due to COVID-19

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(Reuters) -The women’s ice hockey world championships set to be played in Halifax and Truro, Nova Scotia have been cancelled because of a surge in COVID-19 cases in Canada, Hockey Canada said on Wednesday.

The announcement came one day before the 10 teams were to arrive to begin their quarantine ahead of the May 6-16 tournament.

“This is very disappointing news to receive with just a few weeks until the tournament was to begin,” said International Ice Hockey Federation president Rene Fasel in a statement.

“We strongly believe that we had the adequate safety measures in place. In the end, we must accept the decision of the government.”

The IIHF and Hockey Canada were informed by the Nova Scotia provincial government on Wednesday that the 10-country tournament could not go ahead due to safety concerns associated with COVID-19.

Still the news came as a shock after Nova Scotia’s chief medical officer had 24 hours earlier given the event the thumbs- up.

“At five o’clock this morning we were full go and at 7:30 am we were not,” explained Hockey Canada chief executive officer Tom Renney. “That is the way the world is right now and there is only so much we can control.

“At the end of the day there is a bigger game than the one we play here and quite honestly it is about the safety of the general public.”

The cancellation was another blow for the women’s game that has endured a number of recent setbacks, including the folding of the Canadian Women’s Hockey League.

It was also the second consecutive year the Nova Scotia world championships have been stopped by COVID-19.

“Definitely, a little bit of disbelief, a little shock, a lot of emotion,” said Canadian coach Gina Kingsbury, who pulled some players off the ice to deliver the bad news. “This is a group that has been through a lot this past year and two years so they are definitely familiar with disappointing news.”

Both the IIHF and Hockey Canada indicated they plan to play the world championships this year, possibly this summer, in Canada.

“Our intention, and that of the IIHF, is to reconnect with this event as a world championship in 2021 in Canada,” said Renney. “That’s our number one objective. We have every desire to hold this event in Canada.”

(Reporting by Steve Keating in Toronto, Editing by Ed Osmond)

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