SOCHI, Russia (AP) — Alexander Radulov and Ilya Kovalchuk scored in a shootout, Semyon Varlamov stopped 27 shots, and Russia beat Slovakia 1-0 in the Olympic men's hockey tournament Sunday, a day after losing a shootout to the U.S.
After Varlamov stopped both Slovak attempts in the shootout, Kovalchuk beat Jan Laco to seal the Russians' second win in the preliminary-round.
A day after U.S. forward T.J. Oshie scored four shootout goals to beat Russia, the hosts were pushed to another shootout by Laco, who made 36 saves.
Laco was a surprise starter in place of his winless team's two NHL goalies, and the Kontinental Hockey League backup nearly stole a win over the powerful Russian offense.
Russia will find out whether it must play a qualifying game after Canada's late game against Finland.