Muskoka To-DAILY

Murray gets goal, assist as Canada routs Swedes 10-1 in Paralympic opener

SOCHI, Russia — Graeme Murray had a goal and an assist as Canada routed the Swedes 10-1 in Saturday’s Paralympic Winter Games.

Graeme's Murray's family, including his mom Bernene in third from the right in the row  with the lady with the green scarf, along with Graeme's sister Robyn and Bernene's boyfriend Chuck Miller, watch the opening game Saturday in Sochi.

Graeme’s Murray’s family, including his mom Bernene - in third from the right in the row with the lady with the green scarf - along with Graeme’s sister Robyn and Bernene’s boyfriend Chuck Miller, watch the opening game Saturday in Sochi. (Photo by Matthew Murnaghan/Canadian Paralympic Committee) 

(Photo by Matthew Murnaghan/Canadian Paralympic Committee)

(Photo by Matthew Murnaghan/Canadian Paralympic Committee)

The Gravenhurst sledge hockey player was one of seven Canadians who scored and among eight who had at least a point.

Adam Dixon (Midland) and Anthony Gale (Brampton) had two goals and two 

assists each, while Kevin Rempel (Vineland, Ont.) chipped in with four helpers of his own, and Greg Westlake (Oakville) both had a goal and an assist in the win.

Billy Bridges (Summerside, P.E.I.), Ben Delaney (Ottawa) and Dominic Larocque (Quebec City, Que.) had the other Canadian goals. 

Canada didn’t waste any time opening the scoring; Bridges took a drop pass from Derek Whitson (Chatham) and ripped a shot over the glove of 49-year-old Swedish goaltender Ulf Nilsson just 1:03 in.

Delaney doubled the lead 5:39 later, banging in the rebound of a Gale shot that went wide, Gale got one of his own six minutes after that, storming in off the wing to hammer home a loose puck, and Larocque redirected a pass from Dixon 33 seconds after Gale’s goal, capping a dominant first period for the Canadians up 4-0.

Nilsson flashed his glove more than once in the second period, keeping Canada at bay, but three more goals in the final 3:13 made it a seven-goal lead after 30 minutes.

Dixon was first, getting his first at 11:47, Murray wired home a shot right off the face-off at 12:20 and Westlake converted on the power play at 14:45, going to his left hand to beat Nilsson to the far side.

Westlake’s goal would be Canada’s lone marker with the man advantage. It went 1-for-4, while the Swedes were scoreless on their lone opportunity.

Greg Westlake scores as Billy Bridges looks on. (Photos by Matthew Murnaghan/Canadian Paralympic Committee)

Greg Westlake scores as Billy Bridges looks on. (Photo by Matthew Murnaghan/Canadian Paralympic Committee)

Moments after being denied on a breakaway by Canadian netminder Benoit St-Amand (St-Hubert, Que.), Per Kasperi got Sweden on the board five minutes into the third period, sliding a shot along the ice through traffic to break the shutout.

St-Amand wasn’t busy, needing to make just four saves to record the win.

Canada capped the scoring with three goals in 78 seconds with less than five minutes to go; Dixon scored his second goal off a pretty pass from Rempel, Larocque got his second, again off a Rempel feed, and Gale’s second put Canada into double digits.

The Canadians are right back in action Sunday, taking on Norway in the second of three preliminary round games in Group A. The puck drops at 5 a.m. ET/2 a.m. PT.

Go online to cbc.ca for webcast of game.

Short URL: http://www.muskokatodaily.com/?p=18104

Posted by on Mar 8 2014. Filed under Headlines. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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