UPDATED: Norway’s new ice hockey heroes suffered what they’d hoped would be a temporary freeze in their early winning streak at the world championships. Their narrow loss to arch rival Sweden on Tuesday didn’t kill off hopes for a spot in the quarter-finals, but then they also ended up losing to Slovakia on Wednesday night.
Sweden beat Norway by a score of 2-1 at the championships now playing out in Belarus. The Norwegian national team led through much of the match, though, cheered on by enthusiastic fans at the arena in Minsk.
Norway wasn’t favoured at all heading into the championships, because the team lacks some of its most important players who are off on sick leave or playing in the NHL finals. The national team nonetheless beat both Italy and Denmark over the weekend, and came close to beating Sweden.
The team was back in action Wednesday night, against Slovakia, and were all but pummeled, losing by a score of 5-2 again on Saturday. Coach Roy Johansen said the Slovakian team was simply much better than Norway’s. Now the Norwegian team has two days off before hitting the ice against France on Saturday.