Switzerland’s disappointing tournament ended on a positive note, relegating Germany to Division IA on Saturday following a 5-2 victory.
The Germans would strike first in the must-win game with 13:48 off the board. With Edson Harlacher sitting in the box for holding, Tim Bender saw Parker Tuomie streaking in, who riffled it past Gauthier Descloux for the 1-0 goal early on.
72 seconds later, the Swiss tied the game up at one. Timo Meier has been dazzling fans all tournament long, and he made sure to show the small crowd on Saturday his deking skills by beating a German defender before sending it off to Jason Fuchs, who picked up his own rebound to end Kevin Reich’s shutout.
Switzerland got their first lead of the game just a minute and 17 seconds later thanks to a big goal from Denis Malgin. Malgin, who has consistently been one of the better Swiss players all tournament, picked up a juicy rebound and just slid it under Reich’s glove for the 2-1 lead. It also marked Meier’s second point of the period, capping off a fairly dominant period for the young forward.
The second period didn’t see a whole lot of action, but Pius Suter changed that with 8:48 to go in the period. The Swiss had a ton of scoring chances on Reich but would eventually get one from Suter, who’s second relegation round goal came following a wrist shot from the hash marks and beat Reich, who was occupied in front by two players already.
The Germans cut the lead to just one with under two minutes to go in the second. Frederik Tiffels came into the tournament as one of Germany’s best players, and his on-ice awareness was on display when, from beside the net, he caught a streaking Andreas Eder, who fired the puck in from the slot to make it 3-2 heading into the second intermission.
The Germans came into the third period knowing that it could be their last. They hadn’t played in the Division IA World Juniors since the 2012 tournament, and a loss against Switzerland would result in them getting replaced by Belarus in 2016. The Germans had a few scoring chances late in the third, but a horrible giveaway by Reich behind the net ended up on the stick of Luca Hischier, who sent the puck over to Suter who scored on an empty net for the 4-2 lead.
With 5:41 left in regulation time, Meier’s hard work paid off with a goal of his own. The German defense totally gave up on the play, allowing the Swiss to run around in the offensive zone. As a result, Meier was able to find the loose puck to the side of the net and fired one over the glove of Reich for the 5-2 goal. The goal poured salt in the German wound, as Switzerland was able to take the second relegation game by a score of 5-2.
Germany will now play in the Division IA World Juniors in December 2015 after struggling to record a victory in Group A. For Switzerland, the team that many expected to compete in the quarter-finals will finish in ninth place this year, but will be taking part in the 2016 tournament in Finland. Joining them will be Belarus, who earned promotion a few weeks back thanks to a perfect record at the 2015 DIA tournament.
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