Great Britain, Italy win to avoid relegation


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KOSICE, Slovakia — The Brits and Italians will be back … barely.

Ben Davis scored 2:03 into overtime for Great Britain to complete an unlikely comeback and edge France 4-3 to avoid relegation at the expense of the French at the hockey world championships Monday.

Britain’s return to the top division after 25 years looked short-lived after it was defeated in its previous six group games and was 3-0 down in the middle period.

The British fought back with a couple of goals from Robert Dowd and Mike Hammond still in the second frame. Robert Farmer tied it in the final frame, forcing overtime.

Italy came into its game against Austria also without a win and had been outscored 45-1 in the tournament. Somehow, they found their offense and survived among the top teams after prevailing 4-3 in a penalty shootout.

Sean McMonagle beat Austrian goalie David Kickert high on the glove side in the seventh round of the shootout to lift Italy.

The Italians stay in the top group for the first time since a three-year stint from 2006 to ’08.

In a tournament loaded with NHL All-Stars, neither Great Britain nor Italy has an NHLer on its roster. Yet, both programs will play in the 2020 tournament in Switzerland.

Austria finished without a win in the tournament and is relegated, like France.

In other action, Canada shut out Denmark 5-0 for a fifth straight victory.

Sam Reinhart scored two goals and the rest went to Jonathan Marchessault, Pierre-Luc Dubois, and Jared McCann. Mark Stone finished the Group A game in Kosice with two assists.

Carter Hart stopped 21 shots and Mackenzie Blackwood made three saves to combine for the shutout.

Canada climbed to second in Group A with 15 points, one behind leading Finland and one ahead of the United States.

After starting with a loss to Finland, the Canadians close the preliminary round against the U.S. on Tuesday.

The quarterfinals are scheduled for Thursday.

Earlier, Dennis Rassmusen scored the winner into an empty net with 34 seconds remaining for Sweden to beat Latvia 5-4.

Latvia needed a win in regulation to keep alive hopes for a quarterfinal spot in the Group B game in Bratislava. After Roberts Bukarts tied the game for Latvia at 4-all with 3:24 remaining in the final period to complete his hat trick, the Latvians pulled the goaltender for an extra attacker.

Latvia’s loss confirmed the four quarterfinalists from Group B: leader Russia, the two-time defending champion Swedes and the Czech Republic, and Switzerland.

Elias Pettersson, Adrian Kempe, Anton Lander and Hornqvist had a goal each for the Swedes. William Nylander had two assists to lead the scoring list with 15 points.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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