HALIFAX — David Jiricek tied the game with 39 seconds remaining in regulation and Jiri Kulich scored in overtime Wednesday as Czechia came back to beat Sweden 2-1 and advance to the final of the world junior hockey championship.
Ludvig Jansson scored in the second period for Sweden, which appeared poised to advance to the gold-medal game for the first time since 2018.
Jiricek gave Czechia life when he ripped a shot from just outside the left face-off circle past Swedish goalie Carl Lindbom with time winding down.
Kulich sent Czechia to the tournament final when he skated in from the right side and beat Lindbom 9:10 into the extra frame for his fifth goal of the tournament.
Tomas Suchanek made 21 saves for Czechia, while Lindbom stopped 29 shots for Sweden.
Czechia advanced to the gold-medal game for the first time since winning back-to-back titles in 2000 and 2001.
The Czechs will next face host and defending champion Canada in Thursday's final. Canada bounced the United States 6-2 in the other semifinal.
Earlier Wednesday, Latvia beat Austria 4-2 to sweep the best-of-three relegation series.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 4, 2023.
The Canadian Press