USA blanks Finland at Worlds

Jimmy Howard made 18 saves and the United States took down Finland, 5-0, on Sunday to clinch a spot in the quarterfinals at the 2012 World Championship.

Max Pacioretty and Chris Butler each had a goal and an assist for the Americans, who passed Finland for second place in Group H with 13 points.

Kyle Palmieri, Justin Faulk and Bobby Ryan also lit the lamp.

Kari Lehtonen stopped 25-of-30 shots for Finland, the reigning gold medalist. Lehtonen left the game with about eight minutes to go due to an injury.

In Stockholm, Konstantin Barulin stopped 30 shots and Alexander Perezhogin scored just 24 seconds in, as Russia claimed a 2-0 victory over the Czech Republic

Evgeni Malkin also tallied for the Russians, who lead Group S with six wins in six preliminary-round games.

Jakub Kovar made 21 stops in defeat for the Czechs, who fell to 3-2-1 but maintained third place in the group.

Also at Globe Arena, Patrick Thoresen notched six points on a hat trick and three assists, fueling Norway's 12-4 demolition of Germany.

Mats Trygg added a pair of scores, Jonas Holos, Lars Erik Spets and Martin Roymark scored once each and Morten Ask totaled four assists. Lars Haugen was helped by his offense, picking up the win despite allowing four goals on 29 shots.

Dimitri Kotschnew and Dennis Endras succeeded in stopping just 20 of 32 shots for the Germans. Justin Krueger, Patrick Reimer, Marcus Kink and Chris Fischer tallied and Philip Gogulla totaled three helpers in defeat.

Back in Helsinki, Jan Laco's 21 saves led Slovakia to a 1-0 victory against Switzerland.

Tomas Tatar's score late in the first period stood for the victors, who tied Finland for third in Group H.

Reto Berra made 29 stops in defeat for the Swiss, who are tied for fifth with France.