h National teams

Daniel Glira & Co. quarrel, Slovenia rejoices. © Valentina Gallina/FISG

Slovenia crashes World Cup party: Italy now under pressure

The promotion mission of Italy's national teams is in serious danger: The Azzurri lost the top game against Slovenia at the Ice Hockey World Cup in Bolzano on Wednesday and can now afford no more slip-ups in the remaining two games. Well over 4000 fans were shaking in the stands.

From the Sparkasse Arena

Leo Holzknecht

Even before the start of the World Cup, it was clear that the duel with the neighboring country would be groundbreaking. However, one could not have expected that Slovenia would lose against South Korea at the start of the World Cup and would therefore be doomed to win against Italy if they were to be promoted directly back to the top division. Rok Ticar & Co. could be seen in the Sparkasse Arena, which was filled with 4328 fans, that for them it was about sporting survival. They played straight, with high tempo and tactical cleverness and deserved the narrow 2-0 win after 60 minutes.

Mike Pelino's team suffered a sleepy start. The Slovenians literally blew up against the Blue Team in the first third, forced the Azzurri to do a lot of defensive work and scored the all-important 1-0 through Rok Ticar. As a result, Robert Sabolic & Co. significantly scaled back their offensive efforts and instead concentrated on defending. Edo Terglav's team managed this excellently. Italy had a lot of trouble creating scoring chances - even in the power play. The success rate in the majority is a miserable 9 percent after three games.

Italy cannot find any funds

Pelino tried to give new impetus through line changes, but that was hardly successful. However, the truth is that the necessary luck with the puck was not on the Azzurri's side. Again and again a Slovenian stick got in the way or the hard rubber bounced unluckily. Gasper Kroselj also showed an outstanding performance in the Slovenian goal. His counterpart Damian Clara was more confident than 24 hours ago against Japan, but could not prevent the defeat.

Jason Seed and Alex Trivellato fight in front of the goal. © Valentina Gallina/IIHF

The hosts now have one day to learn the lessons from this defeat. The next game takes place on Friday at 19.30 p.m. against Hungary. The Hungarians suffered an embarrassing defeat on Wednesday 1:2 defeat against Romania, but have one point more than Italy. This game is therefore even more important.

The highlights

Overdue 1:0Slovenia dominates at will, but bites its teeth into Clara. Four minutes before the end of the period, the Italian dam broke when Rok Ticar played the puck in front of the goal, where Phil Pietroniro steered it into his own goal with his skate.
No luckThe Azzurri become dangerous after long-range shots from Alex Trivellato and Thomas Larkin. However, the rebounds granted by Gasper Kroslelj cannot be utilized as desired. Among other things, Daniel Frank cannot put a bouncing puck into the goal.
Kroselj's monster saveRight at the beginning of the final third, Anthony Salintri has a great chance to equalize the game. The Italian-Canadian shoots directly from Gazley's pass, but goalie Gasper Kroselj saves thanks to an incredible save.
Magnificent passJust a few seconds after Salinitri's chance, the Slovenians struck: Blaz Tomazevic was not attacked consistently, circled the Italian goal, played a wonderful cross pass to Anze Kuralt, who converted easily.
Slovenia is closedItaly takes Clara off the ice in the final phase and can play at 6 against 4, but the power play is shockingly weak - and does not produce the goal they were hoping for.

Italy – Slovenia 0:2

ITA: Clara (Bernard); Seed-Trivallato, Spornberger-Larkin, Amorosa-Pietroniro, Glira-Insam; De Luca-Mantenuto-Frigo, Salinitri-Catenacci-Gazley, Marchetti-Kostner-Frank, Deluca-Purdeller-Mantinger.
coach: Pelino

SLO: Kroselj (Pintaric); Magovac-Masic, Cosic-Cnrovic, Podlipnik-Cepon, Bohinc; Ticar-Torok-Sabolic, Kuralt-Macuh-Tomazevic, Simsic-Drzog-Mahkovec, Mehle-Sodja-Jezovsek.
coach: Terglav

Gates: 0:1 Ticar (15.52), 0:2 Kuralt (44.08)

Viewers: 4328

The other Wednesday games:

Hungary - Romania 1:2
Goals: 0:1 Peter (49.29), 1:1 Hari (55.40), 1:2 Sandor-Szekely (59.09)
Audience: 2.212

Japan – South Korea 4:3
Goals: 0-1 Jee (15.25), 1-1 Lawlor (21.42), 1-2 Chong Min Lee (26.56), 2-2 Sota Isogai (36.59), 2-3 Don Ku Lee (40.14), 3-3 Yu Sato (51.40), 4:3 Isogai (53.03)
Audience: 1.738

The table

5.South Korea33

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