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Switzerland escapes bronze medal

The Swiss men's team missed out on the bronze medal at the World Street Hockey Championship after a memorable performance, losing 4:3 to the USA. 

The Swiss had to put their semi-final defeat behind them as quickly as possible, as they could go on to make history in the bronze medal match. They faced a heavyweight in the form of the USA, who finished third in the last World Cup. The USA made their first mark after 10 seconds, but Swiss goalkeeper Messer was on his guard. From then on, the Swiss pushed the Americans into their defense, dominated the game and created dangerous chances. Cioffo had the best of these in the 5th minute when he failed to hit the empty net after a fine cross from Rohdewald. The Americans’ respect was palpable. After a severely whistled penalty, goalie Messer made several saves, but he was powerless against a long-range shot from Wilson four seconds before the penalty expired. Contrary to the course of the game, the efficient Americans went into the first break with a lead. 

Once again, the Americans came out of the dressing room more alert. Dutney was forgotten in front of the goal and scored after just 20 seconds. Seconds later, however, the world looked better again for the Swiss: The omnipresent Cioffo scored the deserved goal to reduce the deficit. The equalizer was in the air. However, the US team restored their two-goal lead through Scian with one of their rare, but dangerous, relief attacks. The Swiss, who were superior in terms of running and fighting, were not to be deterred and Iten reduced the deficit with a deflection in powerplay. The dream of a medal was alive. Also because Messer made a miraculous save seconds before the second buzzer. 

The Swiss failed to capitalize on an early powerplay in the final period. But captain Müller sent the Lonza Arena into raptures after 37 minutes with a concealed wrist shot from the blue line. Wehrli came very close to scoring the lead goal with a shot off the post and a solo. Messer kept things tight at the back. The American favorites now wavered, but did not fall: out of nowhere, Jones shot the USA to the medal two minutes before the end. The Swiss had disappointment written all over their faces, their performance deserved the big exploit. It also testifies to their new self-confidence. The young Swiss team nevertheless made history with their 4th place.


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