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Germany advance, U.S. in relegation battle

COLOGNE, Germany (Reuters) - Hosts Germany needed two goals from brothers Marcel and Nicolai Goc to seal their qualification to the world championship second round with a 3-1 win over Denmark in Cologne on Wednesday.

The United States slumped to their third straight group defeat, 3-2 against Finland, to fight for their place in the top division.

The losing run by the Americans left Germany and Finland to progress from Group D along with Denmark, who had already secured their place earlier in the week.

The Danes, who had stunned both Finland and the United States to advance, looked set for another upset when they took an early lead through Philip Larsen against the nervous Germans in front of an 18,000 crowd.

Germany's Marcel Goc, who plays for the Nashville Predators in the NHL, leveled only four minutes later when he deflected an Alexander Sulzer shot into the net.

Felix Schuetz and Marcel's younger brother Nicolai Goc fired in two more in the second period to race into a 3-1 lead and hang on to victory.

The United States will now have to battle it out in the relegation round after losing to the Finns, who put the game beyond the Americans with two minutes left when Sami Kapanen beat netminder Scott Clemmensen with a wrist shot to make it 3-1.

TJ Oshie pulled one back with 17 seconds left but it was too late.

Switzerland beat Canada 4-1, their first win against them at the world championships since 1934, to finish top of Group B with the Canadians also advancing in second spot.

(Writing by Karolos Grohmann, editing by Miles Evans and Pritha Sarkar; To query or comment on this story email sportsfeedback@thomsonreuters.com)