Trio of Stars advance to quarterfinals at Worlds, Roussel goes out with a bang

Six points in three games from Antoine Roussel, including a hat trick and four-point performance in a 4-1 win over Slovenia, wasn’t enough to propel host France into the quarterfinal round of the 2017 IIHF World Championship.

The French finished in fifth place in Group B, one spot out of the top half of the group and a bid to the quarterfinals.

While Roussel’s time in the tournament is over, all three other Stars representatives made the cut with their respective nations. Julius Honka and Finland rode a 2-1 record over their final three games to a fourth-place finish over France, John Klingberg and Sweden locked down third place in Group A with a 3-0 finish, and Valeri Nichushkin, who finally saw action, will skate for Group A runner-up Russia in the quarterfinals.

Roussel finished the tournament with six goals and two assists in seven games. He also led France in penalty minutes with 18.

Klingberg found some consistency in the final three games of preliminary round play, notching three assists and a goal in wins over Slovakia, Denmark and Italy. Honka had a productive finish, as well, scoring his first goal of the tournament in a 3-2 win over Norway and chipping in an assist in a 5-2 loss to Canada.
After being added to the roster in the wake of an injured and absent Alex Ovechkin, Nichushkin was held without a point in three games with Russia.

The quarterfinal round gets underway Thursday. The United States, winner of Group A, will take on Finland in Cologne, while Sweden and Russia will square off with Switzerland and the Czech Republic, respectively, in Paris. The final quarterfinal matchup sees Group B top seed Canada matching up with host Germany in Cologne.

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