The International Ice Hockey Federation announced last week that it had decided to move the 2006 Under-18 Division III World Championships from Israel to Romania.
The Canada Centre in Metulla had been the scheduled site, but the IIHF cited security concerns stemming from cross-border violence in the north of the country, including recent Hizbullah artillery fire.
Representatives from Denmark were the first to voice their country's heightened concerns.
"It was very, very upsetting when the announcement was made, but to be candid, it's the right decision since under-18-year-olds are involved," said Alan Maislin, chairman of the Israel Ice Hockey Federation.
"The IIHF are very upset at having to cancel, and if it's possible, they're even more disappointed than we are. They were hoping to showcase what a small country without any ice resources can do."
"Members of the Israeli junior team are particularly disappointed by the announcement," he continued. "They had looked forward to playing in an international tournament on home ice."
Bat Yam II drops Ma'a lot
Bat Yam II defeated Ma'alot 5-3 in the Israel senior ice hockey league Friday night at the Canada Centre.
The opening period was scoreless, with BYII taking a 2-1 lead after two. Edouard Tokar notched the first at the 21-minute mark, followed in quick succession by a Ma'alot score by Alex Kuzmenkov and then Avishai Geller's first of two goals for BYII.
In the final frame, Slava Golodnisky and Slava Marchansky scored to give Ma'alot a 3-2 lead, but couldn't hold on. Marek Lebedev tied the score and Geller's second gave BYII the lead for good. Lebedev's second goal capped the scoring.
BYII outshot Ma'alot 32-23.
In the second hardfought game of the night, Haifa got by Metulla, also by a score of 5-3.
Haifa's Artium Korotin opened the scoring after less than two minutes had elapsed, and three minutes later, Michael Horowitz put the puck in the net for Metulla. Valery Silyutin bounced back for Haifa at the 14-minute mark and Metulla leveled the score again a minute later, but Korotin put Haifa ahead just prior to the end of the period.
The second frame was scoreless.
After Sergei Belo scored for Haifa in the 43rd minute, Shalev Nemenoff put Metulla within a goal just a minute later. However, Haifa's Leonid Trupanov put the game beyond reach at the 48-minute point.
Haifa outshot Metulla by a 39-20 margin.
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