Down two players, Canada still beat Denmark 10-2 at the world junior hockey championship Thursday to stay undefeated.
After losing winger Devante Smith-Pelly for the tournament due to a broken foot, forward Michael Bournival sat out the game Thursday because of what Canadian head coach Don Hay says is the flu.
So defenceman Nathan Beaulieu moved up to play forward.
“They picked on the offensive defenceman to jump up so I had no problem doing it,” the Saint John Sea Dogs defender said. “We signed onto this team to do whatever it takes so I had no problem jumping up.
“It was fun. It's a lot more tiring than defence. It wasn't too unfamiliar, but I learned some things for sure.”
Mark Stone continued his torrid scoring pace for Canada with two goals and an assist. The Winnipeg winger has a team-leading six goals in the tournament.
Defencemen figured prominently in Canada's victory as Scott Harrington had a goal and three assists and Brandon Gormley had scored twice.
“I think the most points I've had in my OHL is career is three,” Harrington said. “That tops it and something I wasn't expecting to do here.”
Quinton Howden of the Moose Jaw Warriors, Ryan Strome and Freddie Hamilton of the Niagara IceDogs, Brendan Gallagher of the Vancouver Giants and Brett Connolly of the NHL's Tampa Bay Lightning each had a goal in front of 16,275 at Edmonton's Rexall Place.
Canada scored seven straight goals before Nicolai Meyer and Emil Kristensen replied for Denmark in the third period.
The Canadians gave Denmark's Sebastian Feuk a workout in net, peppering him with 51 shots. Mark Visentin of the IceDogs stopped 24 of 26 shots in Canada's net for his second win of the tournament.
Canada tops Pool B at 3-0 ahead of the U.S., Finland and the Czech Republic at 1-1. Denmark dropped to 0-3.
The host country has Friday off and meets the Americans on Saturday to conclude the preliminary round. The U.S. meet the Czechs and the Finns take on the Danes on Friday.
Defending champion Russia and Latvia were meeting in the lone Pool A game in Calgary on Thursday.
The top team in each pool earns a bye to the semifinals. The second seed in each pool faces the third-place team from the opposite pool in the quarter-finals. The bottom two teams in each pool go into the relegation round.
Denmark and Latvia are the countries which earned promotion from the second-tier world championship, called the Division 1 world championship. This year, the International Ice Hockey Federation ruled that only one country will be relegated.
Denmark's star player is Nicklas Jensen, a first-round draft pick of the Vancouver Canucks. He's a teammate of Canada's Boone Jenner on the Oshawa Generals.
It was a lopsided score as it often is when Canada meets the promoted team in their pool. The Danes lack Canada's depth of talent, and their defence and goaltending wasn't enough to hold off the Canadians' attack.
Canada's post-goal celebrations were muted in contrast to the excitement they showed after scoring goals in their first two games. Leading 7-0 heading into the third, there was a drop-off in Canada's intensity and execution.
The two goals by Denmark sparked a three-goal push with a pair from Gormley and a short-handed goal by Gallagher. Canadian head coach Don Hay had defenceman Nathan Bealieu playing forward during the game.
Stone scored his team-leading sixth goal in the second period and Canada also got goals from Harrington and Freddie Hamilton to lead 7-0 after two.
Canada was up 4-0 after the opening period on goals from Howden, Connolly, Stone and Strome. Connolly's goal came short-handed at 6:17. Strome has a team-leading eight points for Canada.
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