Russia ease into last eight

Russia kept up their bid for Olympic ice hockey gold as they eased to a 4-0 victory over Norway.

Zinetula Bilyaletdinov's team were under pressure heading into the qualification play-off but their place in the last eight was never in doubt against a Norway side fresh from three straight defeats in Group B.

Russia went scoreless in the first period but netted twice in the second through Alexander Radulov and Ilya Kovalchuk to take control of the contest.

Radulov scored his second with just over a minute to go as Norway went for broke without a goaltender, and there was still time for Alexei Tereshenko to grab Russia's fourth and confirm a quarter-final date with Finland on Wednesday.

"We have less than 24 hours to prepare for the next game. We have to take the time to prepare the best that we can," said Russia forward Ilya Kovalchuk.

"They're a good team. They've got a good goalie and we have to find a way to beat him if we want a chance to win."

Czech Republic set up a last-eight tie against the United States but had to withstand a late charge before beating neighbours Slovakia 5-3 in a thriller.

Ales Hemsky and Roman Cervenka hit the Slovaks with a quick one-two early on before David Krejci added a third for the Czechs in the closing stages of the opening period.

Cervenka scored his second on 35 minutes to put the Czechs four up but Slovakia kept fighting and pulled within a goal of their rivals through a Marian Hossa double and a Tomas Surovy strike.

Slovakia pulled their goaltender in the dying stages and Tomas Plekanec took full advantage to finally see off Vladimir Vujtek's men.

"We will be in trouble against the US if we play like we did tonight in the third period," said Czech goaltender Ondrej Pavelec.

"America will be fresher than us after a couple of days rest and will be flying at us from all over the place. But hockey is over 60 minutes and anything can happen."

Debutants Slovenia qualified for the quarter-finals in the first game of the day with a comfortable 4-0 win over Austria.

Goals from Anze Kopitar, Jan Urbas, Sabahudin Kovacevic and Jan Mursak secured a tie against much-fancied Sweden in the next round after the Scandinavians qualified top of the play-off standings.

"The way I feel right now, I'm just speechless. This is a dream come true for everybody, for all the people in Slovenia," said goaltender Robert Kristan.

"Nobody believed that we could accomplish what happened today."

Latvia shrugged off three defeats in the group stage to spring a shock by beating one of those victors Switzerland 3-1.

Oskars Bartulis and Lauris Darzins found the net in the first period as Latvia raced into a two-goal lead.

Martin Pluss got one back for Switzerland in the 34th minute but Latvia held firm and scored a minute from time as Darzins fired into an empty net to book a meeting with Canada.

"Maybe the second period wasn't the best but we came back in the third and we played as one big team and a family, and we did it," said Latvia forward Oskars Bartulis.

In the women's tournament, Finland beat Russia 4-0 to condemn the host nation to sixth place.

Linda Valimaki and Riikka Valila scored in quick succession towards the end of the first period and Russia never recovered, with Michelle Karvinen's third-period double sealing fifth spot for the Finns.

Germany claimed seventh place with a hard-fought 3-2 win over Japan.

With the scores level at 1-1 after the first period, Julia Zorn and Sara Seiler hit second-period goals to claim a two-goal advantage for the Europeans and depsite Haruna Yoneyama pulling one back for the Japanese, the Germans held on to record their second Sochi 2014 win over Izuka Yuji's team.