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Quick Hits: Team Canada 4, Team Europe 1

TORONTO -- With little resistance over its first three games, Team Canada is on to the semifinals of the World Cup of Hockey.

Canada got two goals from Jonathan Toews to wrap up first place in its group Wednesday night with a 4-1 win over Team Europe in Air Canada Centre.

The Canadians finished group play 3-0 and outscored their opponents, 14-3. They outshot Team Europe, 46-20, and dominated possession time with a huge 83-53 edge in shot attempts. They have won 13 straight games at the elite level of international play since losing to Team USA in the round-robin portion of the 2010 Vancouver Olympics.

"The depth that we have has allowed us to have success," said captain Sidney Crosby. "Everyone collectively as a group understands that when you play for Team Canada, their role and minutes may judge but ultimately it's just about winning. Everyone understands that and it helps go a long way."

El Sid: Crosby scored the game's first goal and his second of the tournament by beating Team Europe goaltender Jaroslav Halak on a wraparound to the goalpost at 4:01 of the first period.

Captain Serious: Toews gave Canada a 2-0 lead at 19:05 of the first period and boosted its margin back to two goals at 3-1 with a quick wrist shot at 14:48 of the second period. It came after Team Europe defenseman Roman Josi broke his stick and tried to defend a 2-on-1 break without one.

Viva Slovakia: Team Europe's lone goal came from Chicago's Marian Hossa at 4:38 of the second period.

Stat leaders: Toews assisted on Logan Couture's goal to close the scoring and his three-point night gave him a team-high five points in group play. Crosby had four. The only team Europe player with two goals in group play was second-year Edmonton man Leon Draisaitl of Germany

Toews: "Our defensive play is improving. We're allowing fewer and fewer shots and staying out of the box. Those are things we have to continue to crack down on because we know the offensive chances will be there if we keep doing that."

Team Europe coach Ralph Krueger on Canada: "We definitely saw the level it will take to win this tournament. It's going to take something magical to take them out of the top."

On to the semifinals: Canada will play Saturday night at 7 against either Russia or Team North America. It makes a matchup of Crosby against Alex Ovechkin and Pittsburgh teammate Evgeni Malkin, or Crosby in his first career game against Connor McDavid. "They're teams that don't need a lot of room and time to create plays," Crosby said. "... We know whoever we play, we better be ready to move our feet."

Team USA redux: Toews said he has not talked to Chicago teammate Patrick Kane about Team USA's flameout in this tournament but expects to do that when they return to training camp. "'Kaner' is a competitior, one of the best in the world," Toews said. "He went to play well and be a difference maker on the big stage. Unfortunately for him, they fell short. In some ways you feel for your teammate and friend."

Some fresh troops: Playing the second game of a back-to-back and with its semifinal berth assured, Canada gave No. 1 goaltender Carey Price the night off and started Chicago's Corey Crawford in his place. Ryan Getzlaf and Shea Weber also sat, allowing Claude Giroux and Jake Muzzin to make their debuts in the lineup.

Up next for Team Europe: Its semi against Sweden will be Sunday at 1. The winner moves to the best-of-3 final that opens Tuesday night at 8.



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