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World Juniors: USA's Shayne Gostisbehere suspended 1 game

By Adam Gretz | Hockey writer

The United States moved on to the quarterfinal round of the World Junior Championship on Monday with a convincing 9-3 win over Slovakia.

The victory proved to be costly, however. The team learned on Tuesday that defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere has been suspended one game for a spearing incident that occurred at the 16:50 mark of the first period.

Gostisbehere will miss Wedesday's game against the Czech Republic, which will begin at 4 a.m. ET.

Late in the first period with the United States already up 5-1, Gostisbehere approached Slovakia's Matus Matis from behind and drove his stick into, well ... let's just call it a rather painful place.

Here is how the IIHF described the incident:

The infraction involving Shayne Gostisbehere occurred at 16:50 of the first period in the New Year's Eve game between the United States and Slovakia. Upon review of the situation, the IIHF Disciplinary Panel determined that the U.S. defenceman skated up behind Slovakia's Matus Matis and forcefully drove his stick between Matis's legs, striking him in the groin area. Matis fell to the ice, injured on the play, but he did return.

Gostisbehere was assessed a major penalty plus game misconduct under rule 537b. The Disciplinary Panel deemed the action to be reckless. For this the player has to be held accountable.

Based on the received verbal Referee Supervisor report, the written Referees' report, the video material, and the abovementioned facts and after consultation amongst the Disciplinary Panel, it came to the conclusion that the action was not only dangerous to the safety of the opposing player but also unnecessary and avoidable.

Following a hearing with the player, the Disciplinary Panel's unanimous decision was to hand out a one-game suspension.

Um. Ouch?

And in case you missed it, or if the description just wasn't enough for you, here is the video of the incident:

Russia's Valeri Nichushkin also suspended

The United States wasn't the only team to lose a player to a suspension on Tuesday. The IIHF has suspended Russian forward Valeri Nichushkin one game for checking Canada's Tyler Wotherspoon from behind during Canada's 4-1 win on Monday.

The IIHF writes that "once Nichushkin made contact, his arms carried forward and up onto the head and neck area, the force driving Wotherspoon's head into the boards and glass. Nichushkin was assessed a major penalty plus game misconduct under Rule 523a. Wotherspoon suffered facial cuts but returned to the game."

Here is the hit:

He will miss Russia's quarterfinal game against Switzerland on Wednesday.

Juniors scene

Here are the standings after the round-robin games. The top three teams in each pool advance to the next round while the bottom two head to the relegation games.

Pool A standings
TeamGamesWinsOT WinsOT LossesLossesPoints
Sweden4310011
Czech Republic421018
Switzerland410306
Finland411025
Latvia400040
Pool B standings
TeamGamesWinsOT WinsOT LossesLossesPoints
Canada4400012
Russia421018
USA420026
Slovakia401123
Germany400131

Getting ready for the quarterfinal round, Chris Peters writes that the United States will have its hands full against a very deep, talented Czech Republic team. [United States Of Hockey]

Here is Wednesday's schedule of quarterfinal and relegation games (all times ET).

Quarterfinal: USA vs. Czech Republic (4 a.m.)
Relegation: Germany vs. Finland (6 a.m.)
Quarterfinal: Switzerland vs. Russia (8 a.m.)

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @agretz on Twitter and like us on Facebook.

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