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Old Boston Bruins Friend Cehlarik Eliminates Team USA

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The Boston Bruins have plenty of familiar faces and former players taking part in the Winter Olympic games in Beijing and one of them came up big against Team USA in the wee hours of Wednesday morning.

Former B’s prospect Peter Cehlarik scored the game-winner for Team Slovakia in a 3-2 shootout win that eliminated Team USA in the quarterfinals and will keep the Americans out of medal contention at the Beijing games.

Team Slovakia now moves on to the semifinals and the medal round where they’ll get a chance to play for the gold, silver and bronze.

It’s a disappointing end for Team USA, who entered the semifinals as the top seed and held a lead in the game into the final minute of play before surrendering a tying goal to the hard-charging Slovakians.

Team USA, without their NHL players and prior heroes like TJ Oshie, went without a goal in the shootout and couldn’t match Cehlarik’s heroics in getting eliminated from the Olympic tournament.

Cehlarik played a starring role in getting Slovakia into the Olympic quarterfinals with a goal and an assist in Slovakia’s 4-0 qualification playoff victory over Germany on Tuesday. The former Boston Bruins third-round draft pick also scored in Slovakia’s round-robin win against Latvia on Sunday to help set Slovakia up for their first ever hockey medal at the Olympics.

Clearly, they are enjoying all of this back in Slovakia.

The 26-year-old Cehlarik played four seasons for the Boston Bruins bouncing up between the AHL and the NHL while posting five goals and 11 points in 40 games in Boston before playing in Sweden and the KHL over the last couple of seasons. Cehlarik left the Boston Bruins organization a couple of seasons ago and had some pointed words to say about the Black and Gold while lamenting that he felt he never got a legitimate shot over the years to prove he could play at the NHL level.

Joe Haggerty has covered the Boston Bruins and the NHL for 18 years with NBC Sports Boston, WEEI.com, the Boston Metro and the Woburn Daily Times, and currently serves as lead Bruins reporter and columnist for Boston Hockey Now. Haggs always strives to capture the spirt of the thing any way that he can.

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