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World Cup of Hockey XXXV (35) Everything Thread

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Siovanija and Teusland
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Postby Siovanija and Teusland » Mon Mar 19, 2018 7:11 pm

STELBURGER ZEITUNG

LATE EDITION -- SPORTS

'RARING TO GO'


On an evening that would determine the fate of the Goldhorns at the World Cup of Hockey’s 35th edition, Siovanija and Teusland pulled out a miracle result to defeat Tobiasia 1-0, securing play-off qualification.

The Goldhorns headed into the match coming off two very important games, against Banija and Gzejjer. In the Banija match, Gunter Pfenning, Wolfram Spiegel, Razvigor Tsvetanov and Alex Schnyder each scored however it was not enough as the Goldhorns lost 5-4. This caused a difficult situation for the four teams at the top of Group 5 heading into the final two matches, amplified on the next matchday when Banija lost to Quebec, eliminating them, while Tobiasia won their match. The Goldhorns, meanwhile, headed to Gzejjer and Ruslan Ivanov posted an incredible game, stopping 38 shots for the shutout as Alex Schnyder put up two third period goals. Those results set up the final day clash with Tobiasia, with huge implications on the line.

“Look, we know it’s going to be a huge game, but we’re quite excited to go in front of the home crowd and give these fans what they deserve,” said coach Aaron Kuhn at the press conference at the Stelburg Eispalast. “It’s 60 minutes, winner take all, and we’re really pumped up for this game and want to out and get done what we need to do,” the captain Pfenning said. “I’m on a bit of a hot streak, and it’d be really nice to get another one tonight to put us through,” were the words of goalscorer Alex Schnyder. With 24,500 fans rocking in the stands, the match began.

From first puck drop, you could tell that the match would be a battle between two sides leaving everything on the ice. Tobiasia and the Goldhorns both made huge hits, with a high level of intensity on the ice. Tobiasia had some brilliant chances in the first period, with a shot hitting the post, but the best opportunity in the first period fell to Razvigor Tsvetanov. With the puck on his stick and an open goal in front of him, he raised the puck over the net and, upon return to the Goldhorns bench, broke his stick off the glass. The first period proved the prelude to a near-perfect hockey game: skill, speed and intensity. It was truly a match to be remembered.

The Goldhorns’ fans, also, were in full spirit throughout the night, singing loudly and proudly patriotic songs and also the latest favourite songs of the fans relating to the teams and players. The stadium literally bounced when they chanted “Jump if you love the Goldhorns,” and the Eispalast was the loudest it has ever been. The arena was ready to explode, if they could only get one moment to do so, one final glorious moment to achieve the impossible dream. Unranked heading into the tournament, a win for the Goldhorns would secure the first seed in the group and a play-off spot.

Finally, the great moment came. One that will live on in the hearts of hockey fans in this country for a long time. With just 7 minutes remaining in the 3rd period, Timo Horn picked up the puck behind his goal and waited as the Goldhorns changed. The second unit came onto the ice, and Edgar Seckbach received the pass. He slipped it between the defender’s legs and onto the stick of Razvigor Tsvetanov, who suddenly had nothing between him and the goaltender. The entire arena grew silent as he approached the goal, before he sent a low shot through the legs of the goaltender and into the net. The arena exploded, Tsvetanov jumped into the glass in celebration, and the momentum was with the Goldhorns.

The Goldhorns successfully killed out the remaining time until about 43 seconds remained on the clock, and Tobiasia’s goalie headed for the bench. Ruslan Ivanov made a huge glove save with 15 seconds on the clock, before the Goldhorns put it down the ice. Gero Radulov won the ensuing draw back to his defender, who held the puck as time ran out. As the horn sounded, the Goldhorns emptied the bench to celebrate as the party began not just in the Eispalast, but in sports bars and town squares across the country. The Goldhorns are heading to Free Republics for the play-offs.

In a locker room filled with champagne and confetti, some players were willing to answer questions. “It is an unbelievable feeling to make it this far, we’re so proud of what we’ve accomplished and we want to go over now and show that we want to make some noise in these playoffs,” said Ruslan Ivanov. Coach Aaron Kuhn added that “it’s going to be a whole different task for us, but these boys have shown the country that they are ready for everything.” Fans remained on the streets in National Square, Stelburg until 4:30am celebrating the victory. This truly is a cause for national celebration.

In the play-offs, the Goldhorns will take on Neu Engellon. The side are ranked 15th in the world, and came second in a group 6 that included world champions Vilita and Turori. It’s certainly going to be a tough matchup for the team, but as the Goldhorns have proven throughout the tournament so far anything can happen in one game. “They’ve clearly done a lot to get where they currently are, and it’s certainly not going to be easy. We’ve got a lot of respect for high-ranked teams, but we want to make a statement and say we want to join them one day. The players are raring to go, we’re ready” Aaron Kuhn said at a press conference at Stelburg International Airport before the team boarded their flight to the Free Republics.

With an 8-2 record in the group stage, the Goldhorns take on the 7-2-1 Neu Engellon at the Fanucci Escorts Arena in Toakameau, Falatulu, Free Republics. Seating 13,666 fans, the Goldhorns hope to pull off another upset in a do-or-die Round of 16 match. As they have been for the last 10 games, the entire nation will be awaiting the puck drop.
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Vilita and Turori
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Postby Vilita and Turori » Mon Mar 19, 2018 8:32 pm

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Vilita & Turori Top Group 6; Round of 16 Awaits


Group Stage Results

Tomure 4–8 Vilita and Turori

Vilita and Turori 11–2 Peoples Republic of Xabia

Lorenthia 2–3 Vilita and Turori

Vilita and Turori 5–2 The Sherpa Empire

Neu Engollon 3–5 Vilita and Turori

Vilita and Turori 13–2 Tomure

Peoples Republic of Xabia 0–1 Vilita and Turori

Vilita and Turori 1–3 Lorenthia

The Sherpa Empire 1–6 Vilita and Turori

Vilita and Turori 4–2 Neu Engollon
Turoki Coliseum, Turoki City, Turoki Island, Vilita :: The Vilita and Turori Ice Cat Things succeeded at living up to their reigning champions label throughout the Group Stage of World Cup of Hockey XXXV competition as they set national records for goals scored in a game and goals scored in a ten-game group stage campaign. It was nearly a flawless group stage showing for the Ice Cat things who finished with a 9-1-0 record with only a Matchday 8 reversal against Lorenthia to keep Vilita and Turori from the perfect 10 game stretch.

Vilita and Turori opened their Group Stage campaign on the road in Tomure and while they were a little leaky on defense - the four goals pushed past Koyo Apen by Tomure would end up being the most conceded by Vilita and Turori for the entire duration of the Group Stage which saw the Ice Cat Things as a major offensive powerhouse but with struggles to keep weaker opposition from scoring goals particularly over the course of the opening five games of the campaign where they would concede two or more goals in each of those matches.

The second match of the campaign would prove to be a memorable one as two different Ice Cat players recorded hat tricks as Vilita and Turori ran out to an 11-2 domination in front of the home fans giving them 19 goals scored in the opening two games of the competition.

Things would revert more towards the norm over the next few games as the Ice Cat Things took their show on the road narrowly defeating Lorenthia by a 3-2 scoreline before returning home to record a 5-2 win over the upstart Sherpa Empire whom Vilita and Turori are also competing against on the NSSCRA circuit. It set up a crucial Matchday 5 clash away to Neu Engollon that would set the stage for the second half and determine which team would have the upper hand in the race to win Group 6. Vilita and Turori would win a tightly fought match adding an empty net goal late to stretch the advantage resulting in a 5-3 victory and setting clear the path to the Round of 16 knockout stage.

The Ice Cat Things would return home for the second half of Group play and would host Tomure at the Turoki Coliseum in Turoki City. After putting 8 goals past Tomure on the opening day of the competition, fans were certainly hoping for a victory but perhaps were not expecting exactly what would come 60 minutes later. Leading 7-2 after 2 periods of play, the Ice Cat Things put together a 6-goal third period to win the game 13-2 and set another all-time record for goals scored during a single game in the process.

It would ultimately be the highlight of the Group Stage for Vilita and Turori. Head Coach Avalan Marcraw began rotating the starting lineup out starting with the 7th group stage game in the Peoples Republic of Xabia. Back Turori at the Eelandii Ice Palace the Vilita & Turori Ice Cat Things had put 11 goals past the Peoples Republic of Xabia. In the reverse fixture in Xabia, however, it took a rare goal from Denmastre Redfran of the Lopinka Lynx to keep Vilita and Turori unbeaten. One positive from the match, however, was the shutout performance from Fiko Oreta in what would ultimately be the only shutout display from the Ice Cat Things over the group stage.

While luck would ultimately run out, a 1-3 defeat by Lorenthia on Matchday 8 would be the end of the experimentation from Marcraw, bringing back the starting players in The Sherpa Empire would also result in the return of winning ways and Vilita & Turori would win their last two games including the final matchday over Neu Engollon at home to a raucous crowd at the Turoki Colisum in Turoki City to easily take the top spot in Group 6 and advance to the Round of 16 where their World Cup of Hockey title would be on the line.

Vilita and Turori's first opponent would be regional rivals the Royal Kingdom of Quebec. Rumored to be at a crossroads in their illustrious Ice Hockey program, the Royal Kingdom of Quebec's National Team had reportedly lost the support of leadership in the country. While they were not forced to pull out of the 35th World Cup of Hockey they may be distracted by their uncertain playing future and fail to live up to their quality in their matchup with Vilita & Turori.

'Snowman' Avalanski is expected to return between the pipes for Vilita & Turori for the match at the Indoor Sports Arena in Baseton, Amolotopia in the Free Republics. Should the Ice Cat Things begin their title defense succesfully over the Royal Kingdom of Quebec then their path would continue on in a much more difficult test against the winner of Novaya Zemlya v. Savojarna once again to take place at the Indoor Sports Arena in Baseton.






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Savojarna
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Postby Savojarna » Tue Mar 20, 2018 5:33 am

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Savojarna prepares to save an underwhelming WCoH campaign

Note: The Savojar lineup has been edited and adjusted to reflect the injuries RPd in my last post

A year ago, the Savojars were storming through their home World Cup unbeaten until the finals, winning silver from a somewhat surprising number one seed in the KO phase and losing only once to Vilita and Turori in the last game. This unexpected success seemed to herald the arrival of Savojarna in the international elite, pushed the team up to seventh place in the world rankings and led to a highly increased expectation for the 35th edition. Contested in a home-and-away format that was heavily criticised by the Savojar audience for unnecessarily drawing out the cup and increasing the strain on the players, as manifested by the number of injuries in the second half of the campaign, the edition saw a Savojar team which seemed to peak early and then slowly faded, losing twice to Mercedini and facing a somewhat grounding away defeat to Humaliwo. After having lost two Top 10 players in Asgeirsson and Zagulin to injury, Savojarna still managed to avoid the worst with a clear victory over a Lisander team that seemed to outright dissolve in the final period.

The reward for this victory is a trip to the Free Republics, but there is a high chance it will be a short one despite the careful optimism displayed by players and staff alike. With the opponent being an unbeaten and dominant Novaya Zemlya, the octofinals are going to be tough; and the lack of two key players makes them even more so. Both Asgeirsson and Zagulin have been cornerstones of their lines, one by shutting down much of the opposition, and the other by lending a lot of support to the congenial duo of Johan Bryzhnev and Jonas Gulbrandsson by feeding them with pucks and backing them up defensively. Both of them are being replaced on the team by youthful players, the 21 year old Mikael Ingerman in the case of Asgeirsson and the 19 year old Malin Eythorsson in the case of Zagulin, which gives us a good hope for Savojar hockey's future if they manage a good showing against Novaya Zemlya. Given their young age, both of them have already collected considerable experience at high-level ice hockey. Eythor Malinsson played center with ESK Storevik for the last three seasons, lifting the SHS trophy above his head a year ago. Mikael Ingerman has less advantage in professional hockey, having played most of his career with CASK Thorsborg's academy teams, but has been a regular on the army team for this season, and was elected into the All-Star team of the Savojarna-based WJHC 12.

Games between Savojarna and Novaya Zemlya have happened before in the Savojarna Cup, but never in the context of a title tournament. This premiere will be special for many of the Savojar and Novozemlyan players, given the relatively high exchange between the two countries. With Ville Stefansson, Johan Bryzhnev and Jonas Gulbrandsson, half of Savojarna's two top forward lines play in Novaya Zemlya. The Novozemlyan defenders will be particularly attentive to Ville Stefansson, back-to-back Novozemlyan champion with his team of Metallurg Matochkingrad. On the other side, Igor Strelnikov has used his brilliant performance on an otherwise barely competitive Partizan Novaya Russica team in order to turn from a fringe player in the Novozemlyan national team that barely made the cut into the WCoH into a first-liner on this offensively stacked team. Andrei Alenichev, the veteran defender who is listed as one of the two assistant captains of Novaya Zemlya, plays his third season with RHK Savojagrad and was instrumental in the team's surprise run which saw them fold only in the semifinals against later vice champion Torpedo Pawlograd. Finally Radoslav Klepakhov plays a role with Sjoedrhavn SHK, but it is unclear whether he will get to play in the octofinal as he is usually relegated to a reserve role under Bobr.

Due to these import players and the relatively high contact between the hockey communities of Savojarna and Novaya Zemlya, including the broadcast of select NZEL games in Savojarna since this season, the two teams should know each other well enough to stage a great WCoH fight, and many are surprised about the fact that the world's number 2 and the number 7 already clash in the octofinals. Savojarna remains the underdog for a number of reasons. First of all, the rankings clearly do speak in favour of the Novozemlyans, as does history. Novaya Zemlya has a history of strong showings in the World Cup, while Savojarna never progressed past the octofinals except for their magnificent home run a year ago. Secondly, Novaya Zemlya has been the dominant team of the past weeks, with the squad of coach Bobr finishing the group stage with a perfect record and a +34 goal difference. Their group hadn't been the strongest with Qasden and Natanians and Nosts being their prime opponents, but with a schedule packed as tightly as the one of this WCoH edition, this is still a considerable achievement.
Some things, however, also speak for Savojarna. First of all, the team has shown that they do not have to fear anyone when they edged out current world leaders Elejamie in the semifinals of the 34th edition, and even if we account for the playing rush that Savojarna was on during that edition, there is nothing to suggest they would not be capable of repeating such a feat. Secondly, the Novozemlyan team has been somewhat known for a case of knockout trembling, and somewhat struggled to qualify against both Kebec and Anthor despite a perfect group stage record in the last edition as well. And thirdly, while Savojarna has given up twice as many goals as the Novozemlyans, they have scored an equal amount. The days of Savojarna conceding one goal and then losing matches against unrankeds based on that are long gone and we now have considerable offensive firepower.

One sure thing is that we better get used to strong opposition quickly, as a glance at the bracket shows. A potential quarterfinal would likely end up with a rematch of last year's final as we'd be facing Vilita and Turori, unless they lose out to the former powerhouse but currently underwhelming Royal Kingdom of Quebec - a formidable opponent in itself. Past that, every opponent is tough as we would already be looking at the semifinal stage, but with the most likely ones being number one Elejamie or record champion Valanora (who seem set for yet another quarterfinal duel after the Elejamians somewhat surprisingly won their match in Savojarna last year), it seems a fair bit tougher than the other side, where the most likely matchup according to our editorial team is Abanhfleft or Nova Anglicana against Mercedini or Neu Engollon. We are ready for the highlight of the octofinals, the duel of Savojarna and Novaya Zemlya, live on STV2 at 14:00 tomorrow!
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Postby Free Republics » Tue Mar 20, 2018 8:08 am

World Cup of Hockey XXV


This is your Round of 16 Cutoff presented by The O'Reilly Organization! O'Reilly: We're the Greatest!




Results

Cosneolta 0–0 Abanhfleft (0–1 OT)
Nova Anglicana 4–3 Kita-Hinode
Siovanija and Teusland 6–5 Neu Engollon
Mercedini 3–2 Qasden
Elejamie 6–2 Anthor
Valanora 3–2 Cosumar
Vilita and Turori 1–1 Royal Kingdom of Quebec (2–1 OT)
Novaya Zemlya 1–2 Savojarna





Quarterfinals (March 23)

Abanhfleft v. Nova Anglicana @ Indoor Sports Arena, Baseton, Amolotopia, Free Republics
Siovanija and Teusland v. Mercedini @ Indoor Sports Arena, Baseton, Amolotopia, Free Republics
Elejamie v. Valanora @ Indoor Sports Arena, Baseton, Amolotopia, Free Republics
Vilita and Turori v. Savojarna @ Indoor Sports Arena, Baseton, Amolotopia, Free Republics

Semifinals (March 25)

Abanhfleft/Nova Anglicana v. Siovanija and Teusland/Mercedini @ Fanucci Escorts Arena, Toakameau, Falatulu, Free Republics
Elejamie/Valanora v. Vilita and Turori/Savojarna @ Johnston Marijuana Company Arena, Latroit, Yorkoba, Free Republics

3rd Place Game (March 27)

Semifinal Loser v. Semifinal Loser @ SuperSatellite Arena, New City, Orlandiana, Free Republics

Final (March 27)

Semifinal Winner v. Semifinal Winner @ Venicio Piazza Memorial Arena, Republica, Republica District, Free Republics
Last edited by Free Republics on Tue Mar 20, 2018 8:14 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Mercedini
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Postby Mercedini » Tue Mar 20, 2018 9:55 am

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World Cup of Hockey Round Up
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Welcome back to Mercedini Sports Daily and our coverage of the 35th World Cup of Hockey. It has been a big day for the Mercedinian World Cup of Hockey team as they attempt to make history for the deepest ever run in the tournament. They have bounced back brilliantly following their group stage exits in both of the previous two tournaments. The Olympics provided the team with an excellent set-up for the World Cup of Hockey, with the team making it to the quarter finals of the tournament before being knocked out by Taracy before the medal games, the team was not at their strongest sat the Olympics as they attempted to blow away the cobwebs which a long period of absence will bring about. The team were refreshed as they entered the 35th edition of the World Cup of Harmony, with the tournament co-ordinators opting for a double round robin group stage format where teams will play home and away in a long and drawn out group stage. It has drawn much criticism from some of the world's top hockey nations, however the Mercedinian Hockey Association has praised it's usage of the format, citing that it gives national hockey fans a chance to see some of the world's best teams play in their own back yard. It been a frantic couple of days for all nations involved, so let's see how the Kingfishers have got on it the multiverse's biggest hockey tournament.

Mercedinian Opponents and Results
Group Home W 4-0 Humaliwo
Group Away W 2-1* St Saratoga
Group Home W 4-3 Savojarna
Group Home W 3-1 Lisander

Group Away L 0-1 New Doltania
Group Away W 8-3 Humaliwo
Group Home W 7-3 St Saratoga
Group Away W 4-2 Savojarna

Group Away L 3-4 Lisander
Group Home W 5-1 New Doltania


Group 7 Pld W L OTL GF GA GD Pts
1 Mercedini 10 8 2 0 40 19 +21 16

2 Savojarna 10 7 3 0 45 22 +23 14
3 Lisander 10 7 3 0 31 26 +5 14
4 St Saratoga 10 3 5 2 24 31 −7 8
5 Humaliwo 10 4 6 0 26 42 −16 8
6 New Doltania 10 1 9 0 17 43 −26 2

R-XVI Neut W 3-2 Qasden


Unbelievable! Mercedini have finally broken their Round of 16 curse following a closely fought 3-2 victory over Qasden, giving the team a first ever appearance in the quarter-finals at this stage. The victory comes following a successful group stage performance which saw Mercedini top Group seven ahead of main group rivals Savojarna and Lisander, giving the team in blue and black an easier draw in the knockout stages. A sizable Mercedinian contingency was present to witness one of the sporting successes of the cycle as narrow margins from both teams ended up paying dividends for the team who hadn't reached this stage in three cycles.

But before all that, there was just the simple task of rounding out what had become a surprisingly fruitful group stage for the Kingfishers, with qualificationassured and what seemed a relatively simple task of dispatching New Doltania to claim the top spot in the group. The two teams entered the MRC.CUBE in Zoloroni knowing that the near futures of both teams was relatively assured when it came to this tournament, Mercedini had already earned themselves a place in the top two thanks to their two point advantage and head to head sweep over Savojarna which ultimately guaranteed them a place above the seventh ranked team in the world. New Doltania were already long since eliminated from proceedings, but did upset the odds by beating the Kingfishers in the reverse fixture between these two teams. With Savojarna and Lisander effectively fighting for the final qualification spot in the group, the Mercedini-New Doltania matchup was on the undercard of group seven action.

It didn't take long for the Mercedini to put right the embarrassment of the previous week, as they went to work on the Doltanian defence and putting three past the visiting goalkeeper in the first period alone, effectively putting the tie to bed with 40 minutes of the game still to go. The Mercedinian coaching team then allowed some of the players from the second and third line express themselves on the ice, giving potential future players the ability to gain valuable experience for future editions of the tournament. A blank in the second period put eyes firmly on other games going on in the group, however a feisty third period saw three further goals in the game with a New Doltanian slap shot being more than cancelled out by a further two Mercedinian goals, with both of them being scrappy goals which wont be featured on tournament highlight reels. In the end, a comprehensive 5-1 victory for the Kingfishers gave them plenty of momentum going into the crucial knockout phases.

Mercedini ended the group stages at the top of the pile and advances two points clear of their nearest rival, with Savojarna snatching the final knockout spot at the death following their win over Lisander in the final group game. That meant a mass booking of flights to the Free Republics were afoot, with players and fans scrambling for flights and hotels to the vast and varied nation in the region of Lunia to see their team in action for the all important final sixteen. Plenty of familiar faces were present in the list of teams that made it onto the flight to the Free Republics, with perennial juggernauts Valanora, Elejamie and Novaya Zemlya bossing their group once again and putting their names in the knockout round draws, but there were a number of names who were reaching this stage for the very first time, namely Cosneolta (who Mercedinians should be very familiar with) and Siovanija and Teusland (who is the most remarkable of all, making it to the knockout rounds on their very first go), truly a mixed bag when it comes to pedigree and talent.

Mercedini and Qasden were drawn against each other in the Round of Sixteen, two middle of the road teams who were looking to kick their hockey up a gear with a good performance in this tournament. Qasden finished in a very respectable second place in the eighth and final group, overcoming Natanians and Nosts in a make or break final group game which was won by the Qasdonians in overtime, pipping their nearest rivals to second place by a single point, proving the tightest margins can really make a difference. It was the first time both teams had met each other in a neutral venue with both teams having the ability to overcome their opponents and put their names in the final eight of the tournament.

Mercedini knew what was one the line, with Qasden once again proving why they were a nation on the rise and why they should not be underestimated at this level, especially now Mercedini were away from their familiar territory of the MRC.CUBE. Qasden took the lead in the opening period with a double deflected slap shot deceiving the vision of goalkeeper Carl Arkenton in the Mercedinian net, with the kitty lovers getting their perfect start and the lead which they wanted to hold onto for as long as it can. Mercedini has always been known for it's attacking prowess in a number of different sports; Billic, Chillotov and Dostalok going well in the sport of football, and the Pasta 7s' attacking nature taking them to 4th place in the most recent 7-Ball tournament, but Mercedinian hockey had a few of their own, namely Max Morton and Ayal Ismaat, both playing abroad to great acclaim in their sporting nations. They combined to relight the fire in the match following lull at the end of the first period and continuing into the start of the second. However the two Mercedinian stars combined to score twice in as many minutes for the Kingfishers, to put them through to the final eight as it stood.

Into the third period, Mercedini held the one goal advantage they craved with twenty minutes to go, but there were to be more twists and turns in the final period with both teams looking to seal the game up with time to spare. Qasden stuck first in the third period which put both teams back onto square one when it came to the score line, a simple pas forward beating anyone before the Qasden attacker slipped the puck in at the near post. Less that eight minutes to go in the match, either team could still snatch victory at the death, and with matches up and down the country still ongoing, it was one of many matches which were competing for the viewers attention in the Free Republics.

In the final couple of minutes, Mercedini made the possession count as Ayal Ismaat scored his second and Mercedini's third of the match, which ultimately was the game winning goal with no time left for Qasden to score. Morton laid the puck off for Ismaat to chase, and with two defenders between him and the goal, he did way to dribble the puck, find a gap and fire into the roof of the net to send the blue and black portion of the crowd into ecstasy. 3-2 with barely any time for Qasden to make a response, Mercedini ultimately survived the final ninety second or so to hand on or the win and make history for their team and the nation. It's a good day to be a Mercedinian hockey fan.

So there we have it, Mercedini have finally made it to the quarter finals on their third time of asking, and they will face what is surely the story of the World Cup of Hockey. Slovenija and Teusland have overcome some of the world's best hockey playing nations to put their name in the final eight, and will play Mercedini for a spot in the semi-finals. Both teams are currently making history in this edition, with one of them guaranteed to make it at least one step further at this tournament. We hope you will be able to join us for that, but from the Free Republics. Goodnight!
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Postby Vilita and Turori » Wed Mar 21, 2018 2:00 am

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Vilita & Turori edge past Quebecios, Title Rematch Awaits


WCoH 35 Results

Tomure 4–8 Vilita and Turori
Vilita and Turori 11–2 Peoples Republic of Xabia
Lorenthia 2–3 Vilita and Turori
Vilita and Turori 5–2 The Sherpa Empire
Neu Engollon 3–5 Vilita and Turori
Vilita and Turori 13–2 Tomure
Peoples Republic of Xabia 0–1 Vilita and Turori
Vilita and Turori 1–3 Lorenthia
The Sherpa Empire 1–6 Vilita and Turori
Vilita and Turori 4–2 Neu Engollon
Round of 16
Vilita and Turori 1–1 Royal Kingdom of Quebec (2–1 OT)
Indoor Sports Arena, Baseton, Amolotopia, Free Republics :: The Vilita and Turori Ice Cat Things ventured off to the Free Republics to truly begin their title defense as the reigning champions of the World Cup of Hockey by contesting the World Cup of Hockey XXXV knockout rounds.

Up until this point in the competition Vilita and Turori had been minimally challenged, setting many national team records during lopsided group stage competition matches against underwhelming opponents and upstart nations, strengthening the calls from some for a tiered international system to be introduced whereby the top teams contest against the top teams and the middle and lower tiered teams compete in a promotion/relegation system. Regardless, the games were fun for the players who got to display their offensive talent but now it is certain that the fun may be put on the shelf and the players would have to put their serious faces on.

No longer would the opponents be new foes from far off lands the players had never heard of no less visited. The names that now stood in the path of Vilita and Turori and a return to the World Cup of Hockey finals were very familiar - the who's who of international Ice Hockey. The Royal Kingdom of Quebec. Valanora and Cosumar. Elejami. Novaya Zemlya and Savojarna.

There would be no more easy games from this point forward and there would be no room for error. If Vilita and Turori wanted to keep their claim to the trophy they would have to win four more matches without exception.

They made their way to Baseton in Amolotopia in the Free Republics where they would make base camp at least for the first two rounds of the Playoffs should they survive as far. Their first opposition would be a very familiar foe, Vilita and Turori's northern neighbors the Royal Kingdom of Quebec.

While the Quebecois had not been the most impressive team during the Group Stage dropping three results and barely sneaking into the second spot ahead of Tobiasia, losing their group to up-and-comer Siovanija and Teusland, they still possessed deep talent and would be looking to make amends for a weak group stage performance.

There would be no better way for them to make their mends than to de-throne the reigning champions and they showed as much motivation from the drop of the puck going hard and outshooting the Ice Cat Things 10-2 over the opening 8 minutes of play. Things settled out from that point but it was the Royal Kingdom of Quebec who got on the board first with about 3 minutes left in the period after a mistake in the offensive zone by Korus Korney allowed the Quebecois to break on a two-on-one chance that was converted past 'Snowman' Avalanski to put the Royal Kingdom of Quebec up 1-0 at the end of the first period.

The second period was battle in the trenches and quality goal scoring opportunities went down as physicality and neutral zone play went up. There were no goals but two fights in the period that saw a total of 58 penalty minutes handed out - most of them matching and cancelling out on either side limiting power play time.

The Ice Cat things did get a power play in the third period, however, when Lance Blaki was hit with a high stick drawing blood and resulting in a double minor. The Royal Kingdom of Quebec killed off the first penalty but Blaki got revenge on the second tipping a Torren Filiao shot in between the legs of the Quebecois netminder leveling the scores at 1-1.

The game would ultimately be decided in Overtime where it took just 4 minutes and 23 seconds before an unmarked Tavren Raparon was spotted by Dolak Vintal-Morta who cleverly shot wide left of the goal with the rebound bouncing behind the net and back out in front to Raparon who had half a net to shoot at, making no mistake and sending Vilita and Turori through to the Quarter Finals.

The Quarter Finals would once again be played at the Indoor Sports Arena in Baseton and Vilita and Turori's opponents would be World Cup of Hockey 34 hosts and Runners-Up Savojarna in the first meeting between the two sides since the World Cup of Hockey 34 final.

Neutrals will likely be hoping for a match just as exciting as the World Cup of Hockey 34 final which was ultimately decided in a shootout after the championship match ended 4-4 in Regulation and no goals were scored after a single overtime period was played. The Ice Cat Things, however, would likely want to avoid a second consecutive overtime match if they are to win the game as no doubt with the quality of opposition increasing each round, if they are to stand a chance at defending their title they will need to be as fresh as possible with the prospect of a Semi-Final matchup against either Valanora or Elejamie awaiting whichever team came emerge the title rematch in the Free Republics.





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Postby Savojarna » Thu Mar 22, 2018 3:35 pm

SavojarSports.sj - inside reports from all Savojarna
Belushya Guba Duo shoots Novaya Zemlya out of the Cup!


It had been a brutal fight in Baseton last night as Savojarna overcame Novaya Zemlya with 2-1 in what was widely considered the most attractive matchup of the octofinals. For the Savojars, this first game against the Arctic hockey powerhouse at a WCoH sanctioned tournament was an uphill battle from the start, but it ended up being the two players known as "Belushya Guba Duo", the wingers Johan Bryzhnev and Jonas Gulbrandsson who play in the Novozemlyan capital, who decided it against their teammates. The match was tightly contested over 60 minutes, but despite it being hard fought and very passionate, it remained a fair game throughout the whole match with only four minor penalties on each side. After a first period in which the Savojars were heavily outshot, but only were down 0-1 thanks to a brilliant performance by Nick Hoyman, they came back in the second period but failed to score. The decision finally came four minutes before the end with a sharp wristshot by Bryzhnev and a final all-out offence by Novaya Zemlya that the Savojars could avert.

In the beginning, the nervousity and slight insecurity of a Savojar team that had been criticised in the group stage and seemed somewhat shaken following their defeat against Mercedini was showing clearly, which the Novozemlyans used to run all over our team in the early minutes. Only three minutes into the game, Hoyman already had made two major saves, first by stopping a one-timer by Partizan Novaya Russica forward Igor Strelnikov and then in a two-on-one against Bezrodny and Shelagin. Savojarna had trouble in the first period and could only get to chances with fast counters, the best one being a run by Elyagin finished by a tricky backhander to the top shelf that Lopatin snatched with his glove. Shortly after they went down a goal as Strelnikov, knowing the weaknesses of Hoyman from SHS games, shot low to his pad provoking a rebound onto the stick of superstar Valeri Kalagin, who lifted the puck over the goalie's pad. Throughout the rest of the period, Novaya Zemlya was less pressing but remained dominant, finishing the period with a 14-8 shot advantage.

The second period opened with a shock for Savojarna, a goal in the powerplay by Zimulis in a highly chaotic situation. However, an enraged Nick Hoyman demanded a video review, and the referees disallowed the goal as the video showed that Yemelyanov had pushed the goalie out of position. Following this decision the Savojars seemed to have found new hope, but Novaya Zemlya remained the better team and the Savojars had few chances to equalise until the 29th minute, when Andrei Alenichev had cross-checked his teammate Simonen out of the way in front of the goal and went to the penalty box. With Alenichev out, the Savojars could now play a powerplay to aim for the equaliser - and this is what almost happened. The powerplay was quickly installed and Stefansson slapped the puck onto the goal, where Andersson deflected the puck onto the post. This kickstarted the Savojar game and got them back into the game, but not to a goal.

The turnaround for the Savojar side came only in the third period, and again on the powerplay. Kazarezov had held back Jaskinen behind the net and was penalised for it, and again the powerplay stood very quickly. Jarnström shot the puck from the centre of the blue line towards the goal and found a gap in the box, but failed to beat Lopatin who conceded a rebound. Rushing in from the left wing, Mikael Söderberg put the puck behind Lopatin into the goal. The true turning point, however, came with a penalty against Savojarna. Already on the penalty killing, Yarchenko pushed his opponent over and caused a 1:26 two-man-advantage for Novaya Zemlya. Having survived this difficult situation clearly seemed to give Savojarna a boost and led to the Novozemlyans losing some of their spirit. Clearly, having run up against Niklas Hoyman for two periods without much success had drained the energy of the Novozemlyan team.

But unsurprisingly, the number two of the world fought back against the early end of their World Cup campaign with a heavy defence against the relentless attack of Savojarna, and they did so with a lot of success. It took them until the aforementioned 56th minute and an attack by the Belushya Guba Duo. Zagulin gained the puck in his own zone and sent Gulbrandsson down the boards. Face to face with Fyodor Ryzhkov, he played a clever no-look pass to the left where Bryzhnev came speeding down the wing and pulled the puck past Mikhailov before wristing is up into the far corner. One part of the building exploded as the Savojars came close to yet another sensation while the other side fell silent with this defeat. The Novozemlyans threw an all-out attack on the Savojar goal, but Hoyman and his defenders were running high on the rush from the late goal and were dedicated not to lose the initiative, holding on to the match successfully and qualifying for the quarterfinals.

In these quarters, a rematch against Vilita and Turori would be in order. The Savojars are starting to develop somewhat of a rivalry with the reigning champions after they were defeated in the final in Sjoedrhavn a year ago and got their partial revenge at the Olympic Games, where they beat Turori 1-0 in the group stage. However, as they lost early on in the KO stage to South Covello and Turori went on to the medals, it could be argued that revenge wasn't too much of a revenge at all. The true chance to make amends for the narrow shootout loss in the final of WCoH 34 comes now, in Baseton, Free Republics. Whoever wins this game shouldn't celebrate too much, however - the follow-up will be very tough, as a view on the other groups shows.

The other highlight of the quarterfinal stage beside the V&T-Savojarna rematch will be another WCoH 34 rematch, the same quarterfinal as back in Savojarna: Valanora versus Elejamie. Yes, you heard that right: The two behemoths of the hockey world have been stumbling a little bit recently, but even if they are no longer monopolising the title like they used to, whoever wins the clash of the Calcuttas and the Icy Elephants will be a favourite to go all the way. And the winner of this match will play against the winner of Vilita and Turori vs. Savojarna, which is likely to be some kind of preliminary final. Looking at the other bracket half, all of the games were tight. Abahnfleft brought down the favourites and group winners Cosneolta in OT to become the only other second-placed team to qualify, while Nova Anglicana and our group opponents Mercedini narrowly won their games. Up-and-coming Siovanija and Teusland finally edged out Neu Engollon in a spectacular 6-5 victory and look like a strong addition to the international lineup. Nevertheless, we predict a semifinal of Abanhfleft versus Mercedini, with the Kingfishers to win - hopefully to a revenge against Savojarna.

Novaya Zemlya 1-2 Savojarna (1-0, 0-0, 0-2)

GOALS: 13' Kalagin 1-0 (Strelnikov). 48' Söderberg 1-1 (Jarnström, Falborg; Penalty Kazarezov). 56' Bryzhnev 1-2 (Gulbrandsson, Zagulin).
PENALTIES: 4x 2' against Novaya Zemlya; 4x 2 min against Savojarna.
SHOTS: Novaya Zemlya 41 - 34 Savojarna
REMARKS: Novaya Zemlya without Skryabin, Kubyshkin, Klepakhov and Golumbovsky; Savojarna without Kerjanen, Morland, Muranen, Jovinen and Djurberg (all reserves). 23' Goal by Zimulis (NZE) disallowed for goaltender interference. Novaya Zemlya from 59:11 onwards with empty net.
Achievements:
Reigning Handball World Champions (HWC 20)
WCoH 34 runner-up
Olympic medal count (winter): 6-2-3
HOSTED:
WJHC 12, WCoH 34, Alpine Skiing World Tour
National newswire

Socialist island state 2018 - Cultural mixture of Scandinavia, Finland and Russia -Exports iron, steel, silver and wood - Low fantasy in terms of animal species - Sports-loving - 22.8 million inhabitants.

The adjective is Savojar; Savojarnan is not a word!
I am 21, male, and study politics and history. I like left communism, foreign politics, philosophy, ice hockey and metal. Feel free to TG me if youre bored or something, I guess.

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Elejamie
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Postby Elejamie » Thu Mar 22, 2018 9:41 pm

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Everything's Going Better Than Expected: WCoH35 Analyses and Predictions


I must admit that I was incredibly nervous going into the Elejamie-Anthor game. On the one hand, we were higher up in the rankings (#1 vs #4), we've had the better group stage run (9-0-1 vs 7-2-1) and there's only been one game (back at the 33rd World Cup of Hockey, which they hosted) out of six where the Ducks managed to beat the Icy Elephants. But on the other hand I was worried that we'd start choking at this point or Anthor would probably take advantage of any problems they had. Indeed, they did lead that first period, with the only goal coming from Harold Jewel (assisted by Adam Bohatec and Michael Brice) with 12:11 left on the clock. However, we managed to fight back and make it 2-2 at the end of the second; our goals being scored by Kasputin (assisted by Meloten and Saunders) and Han (assisted by Swinburne and Sierra), their goal being scored by Graham Poindexter (unassisted). However, we absolutely tore up the third period by scoring four unanswered goals: Kasputin scoring a second (assisted by Meloten and Lupe), Cerin Meloten scoring one of his own (assisted by the Two Gs, Greg Warren and George Lincoln), Harrison (assisted by Morton and Warren) and Saunders with an empty netter (assisted solely by Meloten). Final score? 6-2. And now in hindsight me getting worried was a bit unfounded.

Either way, here we are at the quarter-finals of the World Cup of Hockey over in the Free Republics. The hosts didn't make it to this stage, since they got eliminated after they finished in fourth place (on the upside, they were going home even if they had made it through). And guess who we'll be facing. On second thoughts, no need since I'll reveal it. But who else will be joining us? The Royal Kingdom of Quebec lost to the reigning champs Vilita and Turori in overtime, which feels like the end of an era for Quebecois ice hockey. The Calcuttas beat the WCoH33 champs Cosumar 3-2. And Savojarna edged out Novaya Zemlya, who up until then hadn't lost any of their games, 2-1. And a few other teams also made it through.

And so, as always, I look into my crystal ball to predict which ones will be making it through and which ones will be going home. Then, using any other data like head-to-heads or finals experience, trying to figure out where the remaining four teams would go. Yes, it's my Analyses and Predictions article, where most of them end up wrong. Oracle at Delphi I am not. Still, it's fun to do, gives me a reason to look back at the archives and, as I've said, there are moments where I end up being right. Or, in the case of the 29th World Cup of Hockey semis, finals and 3PPO, right for the wrong reasons. Enough blabbing, let's get started on this:




Quarter-finals


Abanhfleft vs Nova Anglicana

In the last competition, Abanhfleft were in our group and finished top of it, thanks to beating us 4-3 in overtime on the second day. There they'd storm on to a 6-2 win over New Danican before they fell to the eventual winners Vilita and Turori 4-2. In this competition, they managed to get the double over us with a 2-0 shootout win after a 3-3 draw. And, after a good first half from them, it seemed like they were going to get the double over us, right? Nope, 8-3 win for the Icy Elephants. As a result, they slipped down to second and, although they won their remaining games, they weren't able to overtake us. On the upside, at least they made it through and beat Cosneolta 1-0 (albeit in overtime), so at least they could bounce back.

Nova Anglicana missed the last competition, which was a slight pity because they didn't do too badly at the 33rd edition. There, they finished in second place in the Clark Group (behind then-reigning champs Valanora) and were up against Gregoryisgodistan (remember them?). NA won the first game 2-1 and won their second game 2-0, although the original game two had to be called off for some reason I can't exactly remember. Then they were up against the Natanians and Nosts and, although they lost the first game 3-2, they bounced back with consecutive 4-2 and 2-0 wins. However, it was the Royal Kingdom of Quebec that got the better of the Ice Lions; although they won the first game with a 3-2 shoot-out win after a goalless draw, the Ice Knights took game two 5-3 and game three 3-2 in OT. And it was followed up with a 3-1 series loss to the hosts in the 3PPO. Fast forward a couple of competitions and the Ice Lions proved they haven't missed a step by topping their group with a near perfect record (their sole loss being a 3-2 defeat to Cosumar) and a 4-3 win over Kita-Hinode. Impressive.

Winner: Nova Anglicana. Abanhfleft weren't a bad team in the competition and they do have the added bonus of being in the last competition but I feel like the Ice Lions would take the W here.

Siovanija and Teusland vs Mercedini

Wow, this is actually quite a surprise. Not much of a surprise, mind, when they beat us at the Odin Invitational but still surprising enough. Yes, we've got a newcomer making it this far. Anyway, Siovanija and Teusland finished first in Group 5 with eight wins and two losses (both times against Banija; 6-5 and 5-4). Going into the Round of 16 and being up against Neu Engollon, it seemed like that it would be the end of the road for them. But no. They managed to grab a hard-fought 6-5 win and now they're here in the quarter-finals. Not bad. Should be interesting to see if they can keep this momentum going.

Mercedini's presence here is much less of a surprise but still a surprise nonetheless. In the last competition, they finished third place in their group, two points behind Banija. In Anthor, they made it to the Round of 16, where they were swept by Esparmuran. In Valanora, they were swept by Quebec in the Round of 16. In Hannasea, they finished third in the Guild of Skinners and Tailors group, level on points with Ficiscia but going out on goal difference. And, in their first competition, back at the 30th edition in Norrehavn, they finished dead last in their group, their only game not ending in a loss was their final day 5-5 draw against Bonapartium. Another team making their first quarter-finals appearance, in other words, thanks to them winning all but two games (1-0 in their first game against New Doltania, 4-3 in their second game against Lisander) and a 3-2 win against Qasden.

Winner: I'm going to have to give it to the new guys. Again, Mercedini aren't bad and this is definitely going to be a close call but I think the new guys have the upper hand here.

Elejamie vs Valanora

Oh God, not this again. We last met old rivals Valanora in the quarter-finals of the last competition, where we beat them 4-2, which is why I'm doing just the one paragraph as opposed to two separante ones before the predicted winner. Fortunately, it was single elimination so we didn't have to play them again and watch them beat us in the following 2/3 games like they always do when we're playing them in a best-of series (except for our first meeting back at the 28th edition, where they swept us). And, indeed, this seems to be a single elimination tournament and we've had a better group stage run (9-0-1 for us, 8-2-0 for them) so it looks like we might have the upper hand here. But, on the other hand, they've won seven times in our last ten meetings, they seem to still be at the top (or near the top) of their game and they've generally a thorn in our side since our first final back in Norrehavn.

Winner: Valanora. Let's face it, I'm probably going to jinx things for us so I might as well hand them the win. The only positive thing I'll say is that this will be a close game.

Vilita and Turori vs Savojarna

Vilita and Turori are, as previously mentioned, the reigning champions which came as a bit of a surprise. The Ice Cat Things finished top of their group with four wins and one loss, 5-4 to Oontaz Dert Li Ng. They were up against the then-reigning champions Cosumar in the Round of 16 and, to the surprise of quite a few people, managed to knock them out with a 3-2 win. They went on to knock out the aforementioned Abanhfleft 4-2 and were up against Novaya Zemlya, a team they beat 6-1, before taking out the hosts 5-4 in the shoot-out after their game ended 4-4 to lift the trophy. Here? They finished top of their group with only one loss (3-1 in their second game against Lorenthia) and nine wins, the most well-known one being their 12-3 demolition of Tomure, before going on to knock out the Royal Kingdom of Quebec 2-1 in overtime. Not bad.

Savojarna were the hosts of the last tournament and actually did better than expected, especially when you compare it to that pre-tourney competition they held where they lost all of their games. At the last WCoH, they won all of their group stage games before taking out Nyaryaga with a 5-4 win. They'd go on to beat Banija 3-2 before taking us out 2-1 (after overtime) in a semi-final game I thought was a bit fishy at the time because I'm a sore loser. And, as previously mentioned, they lost to Vilita and Turori in the final in a shoot-out that went into sudden death. Over here, their group stage run was a bit spotty (finishing 7-3-0 and level with Lisander, only going through due to the Savojars winning both their games) before ending Novaya Zemlya's winning streak with a 2-1 win in the Round of 16. I imagine they'll put up quite a fight here and try and avenge that final loss on home ice.

Winner: Vilita and Turori. Being the reigning champions will give them that extra edge, as would them winning the first encounter.




Semi-finals


Nova Anglicana vs Siovanaija and Teusland

On the one hand, we've got a seasoned veteran who's been around since the 22nd World Cup of Hockey and even finished fourth in the 28th edition, being swept by Zenic before losing 2-1 to us. On the other hand, we've got a newcomer who did fairly well in their first international ice hockey and is doing well here. While that deserves some props, I still have my doubts.

Winner: Nova Anglicana. Siovanija and Teusland aren't a bad team by any stretch of the imagination but I think the Ice Lions would definitely come out on top here.

Valanora vs Vilita and Turori

The last time these two teams met was at the group stage of the 30th World Cup of Hockey, a game that ended in a 2-2 draw. However, this wasn't the first time these two teams have met. The first time was back in the 23rd edition, when Vilita and Turori managed to grab a 3-1 win in their group stage game over in Group 1. However, Vilita and Turori have only really shined recently when they picked up the last World Cup of Hockey trophy (to add to their two AOHC trophies), whereas Valanora have been a star on the international circuit for a long time with six wins and two second places. The Calcuttas may be on a slight decline at the moments but they've still got plenty in the tank.

Winner: A tough game but I'm giving this one to Valanora, albeit barely.




Finals and 3PPO


Nova Anglicana vs Valanora

There's been quite a few match-ups between these two teams. In Anthor, both teams played in the Clark Group and managed one game each, a 4-1 victory for the Calcuttas and a 2-0 win for the Ice Lions; both sides would go through to the next round, although Valanora would end up losing to eventual champions Cosumar in the quarter-finals, whereas Nova Anglicana would finish in fourth (as previously mentioned). And, before that, they were up against each other at the 26th World Cup of Hockey, where Elejamie made their debut, in the Round of 16. Valanora had swept their group and finished top of it (as you'd expect), whereas Nova Anglicana's sole loss to Quebec saw them finish in second place. And, indeed, the Calcuttas would go on to sweept this series, winning game one 5-3 and game two 2-0.

Winner: Valanora will win their seventh trophy here. Nova Anglicana aren't exactly a bad team and managed to win their last game against the Calcuttas, but the elves are going to be too much for them here.

Siovanija and Teusland vs Vilita and Turori

Again, this is another first-time meeting simply because one of them's a newcomer. And the other's the reigning champion. Apologies for the incredibly short paragraph but I have no idea what to say that I haven't said already. Other than how I regret not picking Mercedini to win.

Winner: Vilita and Turori for the bronze. The only saving grace here is that S&T would make it much narrower, maybe even take the lead at some stage, but I fail to see how they'll pull off an upset.




And there we have it. A rough view of who I think would win and who I think won't win. Of course, knowing the actual competition, we'd probably get a strange final, like Elejamie vs Siovanija and Teusland or Valanora vs Mercedini. However, sometimes it's not all about that. Sometimes it's about watching some good ice hockey, with plenty of amazing goals, brilliant saves and fantastic fights. And, as I lie back and watch the quarter-finals, I'm sure there'll be plenty of those. I'm sure I'm going to enjoy some quality ice hockey. I'm sure you will too. Take care.
Elejamie (English); Elejamia (Spanish); Elejam (Iyilim) - Denonym: Elejamian - Pronounced (English): Eh-leh-jah-meh
World Cup of Hockey 29, 31 and 35 Champions; AVBF Sevens 2 and URSA Sevens 2 Cup Winners; 9th World T20 winners.

OOC: Just some guy who does stuff.
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Postby Siovanija and Teusland » Fri Mar 23, 2018 4:52 am

STELBURGER ZEITUNG

LATE EDITION -- SPORTS

'CLASSIC'


The upstart Siovanija and Teusland national hockey team pulled a 6-5 victory over Neu Engollon out of the bag in the Free Republics to advance to the World Cup of Hockey Quarterfinals.

The team headed into this contest much as it had approached other games against top-ranked teams in the world. Having played Quebec (8), Banija (20) and Tobiasia (17), playing the 15th ranked Neu Engollon was another experience to add to the team’s resume. “Not many people would have expected us to make it this far, and that probably includes most of the guys in this room. I think there may be a similar feeling about this matchup in the world, but I know the guys believe they can do anything now,” said coach Aaron Kuhn. Taking to the ice at the Fanucci Escorts Arena, the Goldhorns in their yellow-blue jerseys were the clear underdog.

The match that would follow was an up and down battle of momentum swings. It was in fact the Goldhorns who started off the game early at a high tempo, bringing the puck on several rushes up the ice, and managing a great shot off the stick of Gunter Pfenning, however it deflected off the crossbar and went out of play. The Goldhorns wouldn’t stay silent for long, however, and it was the 18-year-old Razvigor Tsvetanov, who has really added to the talk about his potential stardom at this tournament, who made a brilliant pass to find his linemate Alex Schnyder. Schnyder, who had scored 8 goals so far at the tournament, faked past a defender before sniping a shot between the legs of Calvino Bassati, the Neu Engollon goaltender.

The Goldhorns now had the current flow of the game with their stride, and made more incursions into the offensive zone. The team would add another goal in the first period, this time courtesy of the defense corp. Koloman Schwarzmann, who has played some inspired hockey for the Goldhorns as the 7th defender, saw his ice time increase in this game and the later group stage matches. He’d be rewarded for that play with a goal in this game, as Gero Radulov dropped the puck back to him. The big defender’s slap shot wasn’t seen by Bassati thanks to screens in front of the net, and the red light was lit again as the Goldhorns led 2-0.

We mentioned that this was a match of momentum, and Neu Engollon quickly regained the momentum after they had lost it. Before that first period was over, the Ibex would be level. 9 minutes remained on the clock when the Goldhorns took the 2-0 lead, however just 2 minutes after that Neu Engollon headed to the powerplay as Veselin Filipov took a slashing call. The Goldhorns defended as well as they could in the first minute of the powerplay, blocking shots and getting some big saves from Ruslan Ivanov in goal. They could not, however, survive the full 2 minutes. Late in the powerplay, Julien LeTranc fired a shot from the point that was tipped past Ivanov by the stick of Primo Delmasso. Delmasso was credited with the goal, and the lead was cut in half. With 1:25 left in the period, the Goldhorns iced the puck forcing a face-off in the offensive zone. Neu Engollon won that draw and hemmed the Goldhorns into their own zone, eventually exploiting the tired defenders and evening the score. It was Remy Velper with a high wrist shot that went over the glove of Ivanov, and just like that the score was again level.

The teams came out of the intermission they way they left the first period: Neu Engollon having the flow of the game. The Goldhorns had lost that flow at some point, and now needed to find a way to get it back. Early in the period, Neu Engollon earned an advantage and doubled it up. Maurice Terfram had the first goal, a snapshot from the slot that beat Ivanov high, and his linemate Von Roessler made the score 4-2 off a one-timer that Ruslan Ivanov, the Goldhorns’ goalie probably did not even see the shot. Now the Goldhorns were truly in trouble, and Aaron Kuhn called a time-out.

Remembering the history of the Goldhorns’ experience at this tournament, it would be wrong to count them out, for comebacks happened in many games in the group stage by both Siovanija and Teusland, and their opponents. Perhaps reminding them of that very fact, Aaron Kuhn’s boys returned to the ice playing harder. They needed a moment to get them back into the game, as Bassati seemed on top form and the Neu Engollon goalscorers were doing exactly what they were supposed to. Finally, an all-important goal came for the Goldhorns. It was again the gritty fourth line that got things done in the offensive zone, as Gero Radulov netted his first of the tournament. A shot from the hash marks to the left of the goaltender, it pinged off the post and into the net. 4-3 now was the score in favour of Neu Engollon.

Before the period was out, the Goldhorns would even the score. The top guns were firing again, as Kosyo Varbanov took the puck over the blue line and passed it in for his man Wolfram Spiegel heading towards the net. Spiegel took the puck and brought it to the forehand, then to the backhand as he raised it over Bassati. Now the score was 4-4, and the Goldhorns and the Ibex both clearly wanted the win. With the second period being a mirror image of the first period, fans eagerly waited what would come in the third period.

For all the anticipation, the period started quite flat. Both sides were eager not to make a mistake, a mistake that could cost them a shot at the quarterfinals. The changed with just about 10 minutes left in the game, as Siovanija and Teusland struck. Gunter Pfenning came over the line on his own, and made an incredible play to get between the defenders and suddenly was in on a breakaway. He beat Bassati to the low right post with his shot, and the Goldhorns now led 5-4.

Now, Neu Engollon came right back at the Goldhorns and applied lots of pressure in the offensive zone. Ruslan Ivanov denied Primo Delmasso on the doorstep twice with incredible acrobatic saves, but the Goldhorns couldn’t sit back and hope forever. With 5 minutes left in the game, it was the man Delmasso, who would find out that the third time's the charm in this game. He took the puck at the boards and worked his way into the slot before firing a wrist shot that was pretty much impossible to stop. Ivanov did his best, but the lamp was lit and the score was 5-5.

Each team now needed one incredible moment, one play that could lift a nation, and it was the Goldhorns who got it. With just under 2 minutes on the clock, the Goldhorns came over the line with the puck. Circling it around the boards, the puck was sent back out to the point. Gregor Herder took a shot but it was low and on the ice, clearly heading wide. Gunter Burchardt, who was commonly the 13th forward, then put his name forever into the history of the national hockey team by poking his stick to deflect the shot past Bassati to give Siovanija and Teusland the 6-5 win. Both sides having expended so much energy to get to that point, it was evident that that would be the game winner, and the last 1:40 played out with almost no issues for the Goldhorns.

“It’s absolutely incredible, not even we expected to make it as far as we have, and to do it for the fans back home is so great, we want to keep making the country proud!” said captain Gunter Pfenning. But another Gunter was the star of the night, everyone wanted to interview Gunter Burchardt. “I haven’t played a lot of minutes and that’s fine, I know my role on this team, but I was due for a goal haha, I’m so glad it could come when it did.” The celebrations both in the dressing room and on the streets back home lasted long into the night, with crowds at National Square in Stelburg and Republic Square in Borograd lasting until 6 in the morning.

The victory sets up a Quarterfinals date with Mercedini, the 13th ranked team in the world. It will be another incredibly difficult matchup for the Goldhorns, but if we’ve learned anything from this tournament, it’s that anything is possible.

Notes: Ruslan Ivanov stopped 40 of 45 saves during the victory, and will start the Quarterfinal with Mercedini…...other Quarterfinalists include Nova Anglicana, Savojarna, Elejamie, Abanhfleft, Valanora and Vilita and Turori. These names include powerhouse hockey countries, and for the Goldhorns to reach this point is an incredible accomplishment no matter the result in the next game….Alex Schnyder leads the team in goals with 9, however it’s Gunter Pfenning who has the most points, with 15 so far in the tournament. Each man will need to come up huge if the Goldhorns are to win their next match….Enyo Nankov, Ventseslav Valchev and Zhelyasko Ivanov were healthy scratches for the Goldhorns….The Quarterfinal will take place at the Indoor Sports Arena in Baseton, Amolotopia, Free Republics.
The United Republics of Siovanija and Teusland
Capital: Borograd -- Population: 67,245,000 -- Languages: Siovanijan, Teus

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Free Republics
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Capitalist Paradise

Postby Free Republics » Fri Mar 23, 2018 6:53 am

World Cup of Hockey XXV


This is your Quarterfinals Cutoff presented by Federation Post! Federation Post: Rain or Shine, We Always Deliver!




Results

Quarterfinals
Abanhfleft 1–0 Nova Anglicana
Siovanija and Teusland 2–5 Mercedini
Elejamie 8–1 Valanora
Vilita and Turori 5–4 Savojarna





Semifinals (March 25)

Abanhfleft v. Mercedini @ Fanucci Escorts Arena, Toakameau, Falatulu, Free Republics
Elejamie v. Vilita and Turori @ Johnston Marijuana Company Arena, Latroit, Yorkoba, Free Republics

3rd Place Game (March 27)

Semifinal Loser v. Semifinal Loser @ SuperSatellite Arena, New City, Orlandiana, Free Republics

Final (March 27)

Semifinal Winner v. Semifinal Winner @ Venicio Piazza Memorial Arena, Republica, Republica District, Free Republics
Last edited by Free Republics on Fri Mar 23, 2018 6:57 am, edited 1 time in total.
World Cup 81 Co-Host
1st: DBC 28, X Winter Olympics, Independents Cup 4, CoH 66
2nd: World Cup 68, DBC 27, U15WC 8, UWCFA Gold Cup I, BoI 15, 2nd Imperial Chap Olympiad, NSCF 11
3rd: World Cup 71, DBC 29, UWCFC Gold Cup III, GCoS 1
Qualified: World Cups 68, 69, 71, 72, 73, 79
Host: World Cup 68, CoH 58, X Winter Olympics, World Bowls XXII & XXXI, WBC 42, RUWC 25, Beach Cup XI, World Korfball Classic III, Runner Cup 7
Current Senior Consul: Kyle Bolton (Liberty)
Current Junior Consul: Scarlett Nicholls (Liberty)
Demonym: Republican
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Official Nation Name: Federation of Free Republics
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Elejamie
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Postby Elejamie » Sat Mar 24, 2018 3:03 pm

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"... Over to John Daverson now with the news of that goal bonanza between Elejamie and Valanora. John?"

That's right, Steve! Good morning, Elejamie! The Icy Elephants are through to the semi-finals after an astonishing 8-1 victory over main rivals Valanora. Elejamie were hot off the heels of a 6-2 victory over Anthor, whereas Valanora had just managed to edge out Cosumar with a 3-2 win. This game was the 11th match-up between the two sides and was also the most one-sided game between the two teams. And now, as they make their way to the semi-final, it's just a question of whether or not they can keep this momentum going. Here are the highlights of that amazing game:

The first period seemed like it would just be another standard Elejamie-Valanora game, with plenty of good saves from both Pedro Cervantes and Birk Dahlberg. The closest anyone came to scoring within the opening ten minutes was when this shot from Hussein Gustavsson had to be disallowed when it turned out that Helmber Dahlberg had unintentionally interfered with Cervantes; as a result, Dahlberg had to spend two minutes in the box, a rare moment where the Calcuttas were down a player, although fortunately for him his side was able to kill off the penalty. Eventually, Stacy Saunders would score the first official goal when his snapshot, assisted by Anatoly Kasputin and Greg Warren, found its way into the back of the net with 8:12 left in the period. Ethan Swinburne would score goal number two for the Icy Elephants with 7:01 left, thanks to a wrist shot through Dahlberg's five hole and assistance from Aaron Andrews. Anatoly Kasputin would go on to score Elejamie's third goal of the period when he deked the puck past Dahlberg on the breakaway with exactly four minutes left; Saunders and Adam Keane were credited with the assist. Indeed, Saunders would score the fourth goal of the period ten seconds later, knocking the puck in off the one-timer after receiving it from Cerin Meloten. Apart from Francisco Solano having to go to the box for two minutes for charging, not much else happened in the period and it ended with an astonishing 4-0 lead for Elejamie.

The second period saw Elejamie carry on their mass assault on the Vanorian goal as Saunders capped off his hat-trick 22 seconds in with an amazing slap shot from the point, which was assisted by Meloten and Lupe. It was at this point that Elejamie seemed to slow down, although whether or not it was out of complacency or pity - or if they actually did slow down at all - is up for debate. Four minutes after that goal, Paul Morton was sent to the box for slashing Jamie Hansson. Another penalty for Elejamie came roughly a minute later, when Bill Harrison was sent to the box for tripping. Fortunately. Goal number six came with 6:07 left on the clock from James Han, assisted by Swinburne and Aaron Andrews, with a snap shot that just made its way over Dahlberg's stick and into the back of the net. Afterwards, not much else happened and, with Elejamie leading 6-0 going into the intermission, any and all hopes for a Vanorian comeback were dashed.

The third period saw a change of faces in between the Vanorian pipes as Birk Dahlberg was taken out of goal and replaced by Freddie Holm. Holm seemed to have done a much better job, as he was able to save plenty of shots from Saunders, Kasputin, Andrews, Meloten, Morton and Harrison. However, 5:19 into the period, Ethan Swinburne would get his double thanks to him thanks to a good backhand on the breakaway as well as some assistance from Han and Neil Cuevas. At this point, Valanora seemed to have given up on scoring and concentrate on stopping their opponents doing that. And then, with 8:12 left in the period, Pael Atenar scored the eighth Elejamian goal, with a simple shovel shot from close range and assistance from the Barajas brothers. However, his joy was short-lived when he was sent to the box fifteen seconds later for hooking, although again his side managed to kill off the penalty. Eventually, Vanorian coach Zelda Hellström pulled Holm for extra attacker Helmer Dahlberg. That seemed to have worked as Dahlberg would go on to score Valanora's only goal of the game when, 13.5 seconds from time, his wrist shot - assisted by Caspar Öberg and Jamie Hansson - would finally beat Pedro Cervantes. However, neither side were able to score afterwards and the match ended in a 8-1 victory for the home nation.

In a post-match interview, a clearly head coach Michael Madgwick struggled to find the words to describe his team's performance. "That was just... I have no words. Too many people to thank. Stacy? Brilliant hat-trick and a good assist. Ethan did good as well. Pedro did as well as his uncle would've done in net. Pael, Anatoly, James, all congratulations. I just... I can't find the words to describe how we did. Next game. Next question."

After calming down and regaining his composure, he was asked "Who do you think you'll play next? Savojarna or Vilita and Turori?"

"I'd have to say Vilita and Turori. While Savojarna aren't bad per se, they seem to be struggling to live up to the amazing progress they showed when they hosted the tournament. They seem to be taking a couple of baby steps back, if that makes any sense. Like how I felt they could've easily made it 3-1 over Novaya Zemlya in the last game or how they were just able to get out of the group stage. Vilita and Turori seem to be a more cohesive unit and, while we were able to easily beat them the last time we played them, this time they should prove to be a bit more of a challenge to us. I'm sure we'll have a good game no matter who our next opponent is."

In a different post-match interview, goalie Pedro Cervantes said "We were confident that we were going to get the win. We were saying how we were going to win this game and hopefully put an end to this rut we've been in. What we didn't expect was that! I understand how ice hockey is fast-paced, high-octane action. But that game? Purely incredible. Throughout that third period I felt like if coach Madgwick pulled me and we just played the twenty minutes with six attackers, nothing would be different. Still, I have to congratulate [Helmer] Dahlberg for finally beating me; no one let you score, you were just good enough to pull it off."

Over to the other quarter-final games now. Abanhfleft, who finished second in our group were just able to beat Nova Anglicana 1-0; Mercedini were able to defeat newcomers Siovanija and Teusland 5-2; and world champions Vilita and Turori were just able to beat Savojarna 5-4 in a repeat of the last World Cup of Hockey finals. No ice hockey tomorrow but we'll be having a double delight for you on Sunday. Yes, both semi-finals will be shown live here on ETV1. The starter? Abanhfleft vs Mercedini in their first match-up since the 32nd World Cup of Hockey, where Team Fleftic were able to get a 3-2 win in their opening group game. But the main event? Elejamie vs Vilita and Turori. Yes, the number ones will be taking on the reigning champions to . Will the Ice Cat Things make their second final in a row? Or will we see a third matchup between Elejamie and Abanhfleft? Or will Mercedini defy the odds and make it to their first ever final? Find out on Puck Drop!

Meanwhile in the rugby union, Murgon Bullfrogs player Adam McCracken will be missing his side's semi-final game against the Davenport Commandos due to a sprained ankle. The 28-year-old winger, hailing from neighbouring Pikeston, could potentially miss the Grand Final againt either the Coventry Wyverns or the Auckhampton Birch Trees...




Period			P1	P2	P3	FS
Elejamie 4 2 2 8
Vanalora 0 0 1 1

Three Stars:
  1. Stacy Saunders (EJM) (3G, 1A, 4 points)
  2. Pedro Cervantes (EJM) (21 shots allowed, 20 saved, 0.952SV%)
  3. Ethan Swinburne (EJM) (2G, 1A, 3 points)
Elejamie (English); Elejamia (Spanish); Elejam (Iyilim) - Denonym: Elejamian - Pronounced (English): Eh-leh-jah-meh
World Cup of Hockey 29, 31 and 35 Champions; AVBF Sevens 2 and URSA Sevens 2 Cup Winners; 9th World T20 winners.

OOC: Just some guy who does stuff.
SISU OUT!

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Mercedini
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Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Mercedini » Sat Mar 24, 2018 4:42 pm

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World Cup of Hockey Quarter Final
@ Indoor Sports Arena, Baseton, Free Republics


Welcome back to Mercedini Sports Daily and our coverage of the 35th World Cup of Hockey. It has been a big day for the Mercedinian World Cup of Hockey team as they attempt to make history for the deepest ever run in the tournament. They did make history last time by making it to their first ever quarter final in their history, and have been given a favourable draw in the quarter finals to make it eve further. Thankfully, most if not all of the dangerous teams have either been knocked out or are in the other half of the draw, meaning the big names should knock out each other before Mercedini even has a chance to play them in a later round. So let's see if they can catapult their reputation as a hockey playing nation to the next level with an all important quarter final match against Siovanija and Teusland.

Mercedinian Opponents and Results
Group Home W 4-0 Humaliwo
Group Away W 2-1* St Saratoga
Group Home W 4-3 Savojarna
Group Home W 3-1 Lisander

Group Away L 0-1 New Doltania
Group Away W 8-3 Humaliwo
Group Home W 7-3 St Saratoga
Group Away W 4-2 Savojarna

Group Away L 3-4 Lisander
Group Home W 5-1 New Doltania


Group 7 Pld W L OTL GF GA GD Pts
1 Mercedini 10 8 2 0 40 19 +21 16

2 Savojarna 10 7 3 0 45 22 +23 14
3 Lisander 10 7 3 0 31 26 +5 14
4 St Saratoga 10 3 5 2 24 31 −7 8
5 Humaliwo 10 4 6 0 26 42 −16 8
6 New Doltania 10 1 9 0 17 43 −26 2

Sixtn Neut W 3-2 Qasden
Qrtrs Neut W 5-2 Siovanija and Teusland


It may seem weird to say out loud, but Mercedini are through to the final four of the World Cup of Hockey for the first time in their history, following a surprisingly comprehensive 5-2 victory over debutants and surprise package Siovanija and Teusland at the Indoor Sports Arena, in Baseton. The match marked a turning point in the fortunes of both nations, with both Mercedini and S&T breaking national records with their deepest ever run in the tournament, with one guaranteed to make it one step further and putting their name in the draw for the final two.

A packed Indoor Sports Arena in Baseton hosted what would be an historic match for both nations. Large travelling contingencies from both nations built up an electric atmosphere in what wasn't one of the most talked about quarter final in the mix, although it was a special match in the eyes of the neutral with two relative unknowns being thrown into the mix with some of the world's greatest.

The game kicked off with frantic action from the start as both teams sought to seize the day and make it a memorable trip for their fans, with Siovanija and Teusland's relatively unknown and rarely seen tactics being put on display in front of the Mercedinians for the first time, giving the management of the Kingfishers and instant reason as to why the team has got to this stage on their first try. Mercedini quashed any fantasy runaway trains from the S&T perspective as the Kingfishers scored twice in a devastating three-minute spell in the first period. It was once again Ayal Ismaat and Max Morton who proved to be the clinical pairing, something which had been cropping up again and again for the Kingfishers, who combined with the Lokomotiv Nezaemy defencemen Peter and Ian Pollock, to open the scoring in the Free Republics. It would prove to be a dampener on proceedings, as Mercedini went into the first period interval two goals to the good as the teams went in for their team talks and refreshments.

The second period came shortly after with Siovanija and Teusland chasing the game following a disappointing first period from their perspective. However, they shortly lifted their game and their respective fans by opening the scoring in the second period, halving the deficit they had to overcome if they were to advance to an unprecedented semi-final match. That forced the hand of the Kingfishers who had to lift their game to quell an S&T fightback which had been seen many times before in this tournament. The Pollocks had been performing well in Novaya Zemlya, with the superior training infrastructure and development programme elevating the levels of the Mercedinian defensive line, which has ultimately proved dividends for the national teams, even if it as taken a number of cycles for it to mature. Peter Pollock restored Mercedini's two goal lead at the very end of the second quarter thanks to a ricocheted shot from Morton deflected into the path of the elder Pollock brother who only needed to touches to score; one to control the puck and one to rifle it into the roof of the net. Timing proved to be factor in this goal as the S&T fans thought they had gotten themselves a grip in the game, only to see it falter at the very end of the period.

The third and final period had been known to cause Mercedini numerous problems in the past, with spirited performances in the group stage and subsequent knockout rounds all counting for nothing following final period collapses, resulting in the Kingfisher's rather mediocre world ranking. The Mercedinian management opted to put the team's second defensive and attacking lines in order to see out the game with a little damage as possible to their chances of advancement. It also gave the younger players valuable time on the puck in big pressure situations to help them develop for when they themselves are chosen as the nation's first defensive or attacking line. Mercedini arguably made their killer blow just five minutes into the final period as Oliver Ansellini, who plays his hockey in Neu Engollon, fired a fourth past the S&T goalkeeper, giving the tea when seemed to be a unassailable 4-1 lead with fifteen minutes to go. Siovanija and Teusland rallied and gave themselves a performance to be proud of, with the team not surrendering the match without a fight and kept Mercedini on the back foot for much of the final period. Their pressure finally got rewarded when they got what eventually turned out to be a consolation goal with a scrappy but effective second goal to raise the score up to 4-2. However, the Kingfishers had the final say in the matter, as quickly becoming talismanic attacker Max Morton fired home with a couple of minutes left on the clock for his second and his nation's fifth of the match.

In the end, we have to give credit to the Siovanija and Teusland team, to come into a tournament like this and knock out big team after big team is no mean feat. Heck, we only managed one draw in our first tournament, let alone topping the group and making it to the final eight in their first tournament. The score line may have flattered the Kingfishers in many respects, but their opponents leave with their heads held high and in great position to go even further than before. For Mercedini, they do head onto the final four, where the action really hots up in the fight for a spot in the final, or perhaps a bronze medal if they aren't as fortunate in the semi-finals.

That's all from us here in the Free Republics. The draw has just been made in the last few minutes and it will be Abanhfleft who Mercedini will have to get past if they are to make it to an historic first final in their history. They may have a small roster and a developing league, but they are making it count out there and have quickly drawn the attention of the entire nation who are watching and waiting from their television sets. They have the weight of Mercedini on their shoulders, so no pressure there then!
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Hosting Portfolio • Trophy Cabinet

World CupBest: Group Stage ('77)
Cup of HarmonyBest: Champion ('72)
U21 World Cup (DBC)Best: Round of 16 (3x)
U18 World Cup (SWC)Best: Champions ('4)
Independents CupBest: 2nd Place ('3)
WC of HockeyBest: 4th Place ('35)
WJHCBest: Champions ('13)
Association Football • 106-28-43 • Rank: 26
Ice Hockey • Unknown • Rank: 17
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Best Placing: 2nd (DUM '55)Most Points: 93 pts (DUM '55)

World Hit Festival
Best Placing: 1st (Vodiznad '34, Gralicna '36)Most Points: 34 pts (Mousiki '31)
Mercedini in WVSC & WHF

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Capitalist Paradise

Postby Free Republics » Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:04 am

World Cup of Hockey XXV


This is your Semifinals Cutoff presented by SuperSatellite! SuperSatellite: We Offer the Most Sports!




Results

Abanhfleft 6–4 Mercedini
Elejamie 2–2 Vilita and Turori (3–2 OT)








3rd Place Game (March 27)

Mercedini v. Vilita and Turori @ SuperSatellite Arena, New City, Orlandiana, Free Republics

Final (March 27)

Abanhfleft v. Elejamie @ Venicio Piazza Memorial Arena, Republica, Republica District, Free Republics
Last edited by Free Republics on Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:11 am, edited 2 times in total.
World Cup 81 Co-Host
1st: DBC 28, X Winter Olympics, Independents Cup 4, CoH 66
2nd: World Cup 68, DBC 27, U15WC 8, UWCFA Gold Cup I, BoI 15, 2nd Imperial Chap Olympiad, NSCF 11
3rd: World Cup 71, DBC 29, UWCFC Gold Cup III, GCoS 1
Qualified: World Cups 68, 69, 71, 72, 73, 79
Host: World Cup 68, CoH 58, X Winter Olympics, World Bowls XXII & XXXI, WBC 42, RUWC 25, Beach Cup XI, World Korfball Classic III, Runner Cup 7
Current Senior Consul: Kyle Bolton (Liberty)
Current Junior Consul: Scarlett Nicholls (Liberty)
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Vilita and Turori
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Postby Vilita and Turori » Sun Mar 25, 2018 9:04 am

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Championship Reign Comes to an End


WCoH 35 Results

Tomure 4–8 Vilita and Turori
Vilita and Turori 11–2 Peoples Republic of Xabia
Lorenthia 2–3 Vilita and Turori
Vilita and Turori 5–2 The Sherpa Empire
Neu Engollon 3–5 Vilita and Turori
Vilita and Turori 13–2 Tomure
Peoples Republic of Xabia 0–1 Vilita and Turori
Vilita and Turori 1–3 Lorenthia
The Sherpa Empire 1–6 Vilita and Turori
Vilita and Turori 4–2 Neu Engollon
Round of 16
Vilita and Turori 1–1 Royal Kingdom of Quebec (2–1 OT)
Quarter Finals
Vilita and Turori 5-4 Savojarna
Semi Finals
Elejamie 2-2 Vilita and Turori (3-2 OT)
Johnston Marijuana Company Arena, Latroit, Yorkoba, Free Republics :: The Vilita and Turori Ice Cat Things reign as World Cup of Hockey Champions has officially come to an end after an overtime defeat to the Elejamie Elephants at the Johnston Marijuana Company Arena in the Free Republics.

Vilita and Turori had advanced to their second consecutive World Cup of Hockey Semi-Finals, having reached the stage by defeating Savojarna in the World Cup of Hockey XXV Quarter Finals in a rematch of the championship game from World Cup of Hockey 34. The match was nearly identical from start to finish and even resulted in the same scoreline and winner with the Ice Cat Things coming away with a 5-4 victory - although this time they managed to secure the victory in regulation time instead of needing overtime and a shootout to accomplish it.

Unfortunately the Ice Cat Things victorious run came to an end in Yorkoba as giants of international hockey Elejamie ousted Vilita and Turori with an overtime winner after the two sides battled to a 2-2 scoreline after 60 minutes of play.

In the end, the Ice Cat Things were unlucky not to advance as the two evenly matched sides seemed like they would be able to trade goals all night if not for the first-goal-wins style of Overtime play. Elejamie will advance to play Abanhfleft in the final at the Venicio Piazza Memorial Arena while Vilita and Turori will advance to the third place playoff match against Mercedini who fell 6-4 to Abanhfleft in the other Semi-Final match. The third place playoff is likely to see some changes to the squad from Avalan Marcraw - a third place finish would certainly be desired by the team but seems important as well to give other players a chance after having set such a high standard by winning the previous World Cup of Hockey, Olympic Games and Regional Championships. Nevertheless, with their championship in the 34th World Cup of Hockey and taking Elejamie to Overtime in the World Cup of Hockey XXV Semi-Finals, the Vilita & Turori Ice Cat Things have truly announced themselves as an international Ice Hockey power, not just a regional force to be reckoned with.

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Elejamie
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Postby Elejamie » Mon Mar 26, 2018 1:34 pm

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Abanhfleft vs Elejamie Yet Again (aka My First Head to Head Article Since WCoH32)


That was quite a tough match, wasn't it? An exciting match, yes, but at the same time quite tough. At first, it seemed like it was going to be a breeze; after all, we beat them 3-0 and 7-4 back in Valanora so we figured it was going to be more of the same. Not as one-sided but still an easy-enough win to send us through. Oh, how I was wrong. We were leading 1-0 at the break, thanks to a Cerin Meloten goal, assisted by Kasputin and Lupe. However, at the start of the second period, they managed to pull one back with a Ricky Fike goal, which was assisted by Eastern Raciani and Tavren Ranapon. Fortunately, we managed to regain the lead with a goal from Bill Harrison and assistance from Paul Morton and were leading 2-1 at the end of the second. We didn't score any in the third but we very nearly managed to make it a hard-fought win. If only River Suzgar (as well as Ocean Suzgar and Kevin Diesel) didn't score the equaliser with 27.8 seconds left of time. Fortunately, Stacy Saunders managed to provide us with the winning unassisted OT goal after everyone was in front of the Vilitan net either trying to put it in or keep it out.

As a result, we've made it back to the final. Our fifth final in total. Pretty impressive, you have to admit, especially since none of us expected to even get this far back when we first competed. Hell, I don't think any of us even expected that we'd win the thing twice. Still we've made. And our final opponents? Abanhfleft. Yet again. This isn't a rivalry brewing, by the way. This isn't going to be a repeat of the whole Elejamie-Valanora rivalry that began in WCoH31 after we met for the second final in a row. We met once in the last tournament, twice in the group stage here and now we're going to meet yet again for the final. If there's another Elejamie-Abanhfleft game in the next one then yes, I might consider it. But for now, let's not worry about it. Instead, let's get onto this head to head:




Best Result


Elejamie 8-1 Valanora: Speaking of Valanora, who would've expected this? Granted, this was a single elimination tournament and, therefore, it was the only way we'd advance over the Calcuttas but you still have to admit that we would've won games two or three if there were any. Two goals from Saunders and one each from Swinburne and Kasputin gave us a 4-0 lead at the end of the first, a third from Saunders and a single from James Han, before Swinburne scored a second and Pael Atenar scored goal number eight. They scored towards the end but it didn't really matter that much since we had already made it through after a stunning match. And yes, I am aware of the memes, from the guy who replaced the Puck Drop commentary with that wrestling guy to the kid crying "Stop, stop. he's already dead".

Abanhfleft 9-1 Vakolicci Haven and Celeria: While I could've easily put their 4-3 shootout win over us, I felt that this was the better result. And while I can't remember who scored for VH&C, I do know who scored for Abanhfleft. Two goals by Kawakami, two from Vinogradova, two from Mable and one each from Rosenberg, Chavez and DiPaolo. I'm not going into much detail here, if only because I think the Fleftic news media would've explained it much better than I could. Try and scout out an article if you can.

Winner: Abanhfleft. While you could argue that Elejamie should've been given the point, mostly because Valanora is one of the best teams around, 9 is still a bigger number. (0-1)




Worst Result


Elejamie 3-4 Abanhfleft (after SO win): The first match-up this tournament, as well as our only defeat in the tournament. It didn't start off too badly, with Anatoly Kasputin scoring first before Abanhfleft equalised thanks to a goal from Cristobal Rosenberg. The second period only saw one goal, Kasputin's second which easily sailed into the back of the net. Kasputin didn't get his hat-trick in the third but James Han would make it 3-1 thanks to a spectacular one-timer and it seemed like Elejamie would get their campaign off to a perfect start. Then Kawakami made it 3-2 and Lino Mable equalised just before the end. After a goalless overtime, it came to a shoot-out. Kawakami scored, Kasputin missed, then both Rosenberg and Saunders missed. And then Brandon Weyandt would go on to score to give his team a 2-0 shoot-out win. A disappointing loss for us but not as disappointing as...

Abanhfleft 3-8 Elejamie: The second match-up this tournament, as well as Team Fleftic's first defeat of the tournament. I'm sure we all know how this one went so I'm just going to keep it brief. Kasputin scored two goals in short succession and, although Doug Chavez pulled one back, a Bill Harrison goal saw the first period end 3-1 to us. Cristobal Rosenberg and Ted Kawakami would go on to equalise in the second period, although fortunatley Ethan Swinburne and Stacy Saunders would regain the lead for us going into the second break. And then came the third period where, despite a new goalie on the ice, they couldn't stop a third from Kasputin, a second from Swinburne and an empty netter from Morton. It's just a question of whether or not they can learn from this mistake and try and prevent us from going on a goal rampage like we did.

Winner (or, in this case, least worst result): Elejamie, simply because we were able to at least scrape a point from it. And, of course, the obvious. (1-1)




Finals Experience


This is Elejamie's first final since the 32nd World Cup of Hockey over in Valanora, where we lost our series 3-1 to the hosts. Of course, we faced them the final before, where we won a 3-1 game. And, in the final before that, they managed to get a reverse sweep. This is also our first final where we haven't played Valanora since we played Gregoryisgodistan in the WCoH29 finals, which we won 2-1.

Abanhfleft, on the other hand, haven't been in a World Cup of Hockey final before. They've made it to the quarter-finals a couple of times, like this competition and the one before, but no appearances in the actual finals. Funnily enough, reports say that ice hockey's losing its popularity over there, so hopefully their national team making it this far would make everyone interested in it again, regardless of whether or not they win.

Winner: Elejamie. Don't act like you're surprised. (2-1)




Offence


Elejamie scored plenty of goals in this tournament. To start off, we scored 47 goals in total throughout our ten group stage games. Not that bad but still could've used some improvement. Such as both games against Melbergia; 1-0 and 3-0. However, there were still a few high-scoring games. The aforementioned 8-3 thrashing of Abanhfleft was one, the 8-2 win over Vakolicci Haven and Celeria was another and I'm going to lump in the 6-0 win over Huri de Wintre. And then came the knock-out stage. First, we despatched our new rivals Anthor with a 6-2 win, followed by the 8-1 devastation against a Valanora side that looked lucky to be there. And then there was the 3-2 OT win against not-rivals Vilita and Turori to send us through. Still, 64 goals in 13 games leaves us with an average of 4.92 goals per game, which is still good.

Abanhfleft's forwards had a whale of a time in the group stage. After all, the aforementioned 9-1 thrashing of Vakolicci Haven and Celeria, the 9-3 win over Melbergia and a 7-3 win against Huri de Wintre showed that they can score by the bucketful. However, they seemed to slow down in the knock-out stages. After all, they had two 1-0 wins, one of which came in overtime. Fortunately, they managed to wake up and secure a 6-4 win over Mercedini to make it through to the finals but it's just a question of whether or not that was too little to late. Either way, with 61 goals in 13 games resulting in a total of an average of 4.69 goals per game, you can't deny they've got a strong offence too.

Winner: Elejamie. Not by much, mind, but it shows that our goal scorers have been awake. (2-1)




Defence


Elejamie's defence has also been quite solid. We've only let in 17 goals throughout all ten games, averaging 1.7 goals conceded. Not bad, you might think. However, it gets better with the 6-2 and 8-1 wins, capped off with the 3-2 overtime win against Vilita and Turori. Overall, 22 goals condeded throughout the tournament gives us a GAA of 1.69. Not bad. Starting to take back what I said about the defence at my first article this competition.

Abanhfleft's defence hasn't been bad either. 29 goals conceded in total throughout the group stage, although in their defence eight of those came from that single game against us. However, once the group stages were over, something changed. They were a bit tighter defensively and even managed to get a couple of shutouts. Of course, they went on to let four in in their 6-4 win over Mercedini but that's just the way things go. All in all, 33 goals conceded in 13 games leaves them a GAA of 2.54. Not that bad but could be better.

Winner: Elejamie. (3-1)




Goaltending


We've done quite well in between the pipes. As previously mentioned, we've only let in 22 goals in total throughout the competition. Which might not sound that bad, you think. However, we've never let in more than three goals throughout the tournament. OK, you can argue that the first game against Abanhfleft saw us let in five goals (three RT and two SO goals) but that doesn't really could since the two shootout goals lead to them earning a single point. But still, we managed to get three shut-outs throughout the entire tournament; both 1-0 and 3-0 wins against Melbergia, as well as the 6-0 win over Huri de Wintre. Not bad.

Abanhfleft haven't been bad in goal either. On the one hand, they nabbed a couple shut-outs; 1-0 against Cosneolta (in OT) and 1-0 against Nova Anglicana (in RT). Not to mention that they've had games where they only let in a single goal, like the 9-1 win in their second game against Vakolicci Haven and Celeria and the 3-1 win against Huri de Wintre. On the other hand, both the 5-4 win in their first game against VH&C, the 6-4 win over Mercedini that sent them to the finals and, of course, the 8-3 utter collapse against us. Apart from the aforementioned huge loss, that's not really bad either.

Winner: Elejamie, simply because we had more shutouts and because the most we've let in in any one game is three. (4-1)




And the winner is: Elejamie.

However, ice hockey games aren't really played on paper. They're played on the ice, of course. And while I have pegged us to win, I will remind everyone that that might not be the case. I have gotten these wrong before, as I have with my Analyses and Predictions. So don't be alarmed with Abanhfleft do get the better of us this time around. As I've said, they're not necessarily a bad team and their amazing run here should be what it takes to bring ice hockey back to relevance over here. It's just a question of whether or not they can top it off with a win, as well as if they can perform this well at the next one. Now I've said my piece, I'll get my popcorn ready, sit down in my favourite seat and watch what should hopefully be some quality action. I hope you all do the same too.
Elejamie (English); Elejamia (Spanish); Elejam (Iyilim) - Denonym: Elejamian - Pronounced (English): Eh-leh-jah-meh
World Cup of Hockey 29, 31 and 35 Champions; AVBF Sevens 2 and URSA Sevens 2 Cup Winners; 9th World T20 winners.

OOC: Just some guy who does stuff.
SISU OUT!

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Free Republics
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Founded: May 03, 2013
Capitalist Paradise

Postby Free Republics » Tue Mar 27, 2018 6:02 am

World Cup of Hockey XXV


This is your 3rd Place Playoff and Finals Cutoff presented by Nicholls Air! Nicholls Air: We Fly You Wherever You Want to Go!




Results

3PPO
Mercedini 4–10 Vilita and Turori

Final
Abanhfleft 3–5 Elejamie


Congratulations to Elejamie for winning another WCoH title, commisserations to Abanhfleft and thanks to everybody who participated!
Last edited by Free Republics on Tue Mar 27, 2018 6:05 am, edited 1 time in total.
World Cup 81 Co-Host
1st: DBC 28, X Winter Olympics, Independents Cup 4, CoH 66
2nd: World Cup 68, DBC 27, U15WC 8, UWCFA Gold Cup I, BoI 15, 2nd Imperial Chap Olympiad, NSCF 11
3rd: World Cup 71, DBC 29, UWCFC Gold Cup III, GCoS 1
Qualified: World Cups 68, 69, 71, 72, 73, 79
Host: World Cup 68, CoH 58, X Winter Olympics, World Bowls XXII & XXXI, WBC 42, RUWC 25, Beach Cup XI, World Korfball Classic III, Runner Cup 7
Current Senior Consul: Kyle Bolton (Liberty)
Current Junior Consul: Scarlett Nicholls (Liberty)
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Official Nation Name: Federation of Free Republics
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