Canada 4, Kazakstan 1
NAGANO, Japan (AP) _ Canada, favored to win its first Olympic hockey gold medal since 1952, is still perfect four games into the tournament.
Patrick Roy stopped 16 shots as Canada defeated Kazakstan 4-1 today in the single-elimination quarterfinals for its fourth consecutive win.
The victory set up a showdown in Friday’s semifinals between goalies Roy and Dominik Hasek of the Czech Republic, a 4-1 winner over the United States.
Canada and Russia, also 4-0, are the only teams with spotless records. The Canadians have outscored opponents 16-4 in four games.
Playing its first Olympic hockey tournament, Kazakstan was outscored 25-6 in three round-robin losses.
Joe Nieuwendyk and Shayne Corson scored 42 seconds apart in the game’s first 2:13 to give Canada a 2-0 lead before a raucous partisan crowd at Big Hat.
Nieuwendyk’s slap shot from the left circle beat Kazak goalie Vitaly Yeremeyev through the legs. The same thing happened on Corson’s goal after he took a pass from Eric Lindros.
The Kazaks got in on the act 1 1/2 minutes later. Konstantin Shafranov wristed a shot through the legs of a Canadian defender that bounced off Roy’s stick and into the net.
Canada survived a scare in the first period when the tying goal was disallowed because of a roughing penalty on Kazakstan.
The Canadians aimed another scoring barrage at Yeremeyev late in the second period. Brendan Shanahan and Steve Yzerman made it 4-1 with goals 32 seconds apart on assists by Wayne Gretzky.
Gretzky, the biggest hockey star in Nagano, chipped a pass around two Kazakstan defenders and Yeremeyev to set up Shanahan’s shot into the net’s left corner. Yzerman scored on a rebound of Gretzky’s shot at 17:01.