Torille! Finland claims gold at junior world championships

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Under-20 world championship trophy held aloft by winning Finnish player / Credit: @Leijonat Twitter

Finland’s under-20 ice hockey team has captured another gold medal at the World Junior Championships in Canada.

The ‘Young Lions’ beat USA 3-2 in the early hours of the morning, Finland time.

“We won as a team” said goaltender Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen after the match.

“We just played so well as a team, as we have played since the [earlier] Canada game, so I think that was the best part” he told reporters.

It’s Finland’s third world junior gold medal in six years, and fifth title overall at under-20 level.

“It was unbelievable, and it’s going to be great the whole day, and tomorrow, and it’s a great feeling” said forward Kaapo Kakko, who scored the crucial third goal with less than 90 seconds left on the clock in the third period.

Finland’s other two goals came from Jesse Ylonen and Otto Latvala.

Reaction to the win brought dozens of people to the market square in Helsinki even in the early hours of the morning, responding to the cry of “Torille!” – “to the square!” – when Finland has enjoyed international sporting success.

In the bronze medal match, Russia beat Switzerland 5-2 to clinch third place.

Picture of the 2019 World Junior Champions, Finland / Credit: @Leijonat Twitter