(Updates after late games)
May 22 (Reuters) - Olympic ice hockey gold medallists Canada lost 3-2 to Finland in the quarter-finals of the world championships on Thursday to join the U.S. in heading for the exit after the Americans went down 4-3 to the Czech Republic.
Holders Sweden earned a hard fought 3-2 win over hosts Belarus and in the semi-finals will face Russia, who earlier beat France 3-0, leaving the Finns to take on the Czechs.
A goal with three minutes left in the third period by Iiro Pakarinen gave the Finland victory as Canada fell at the quarter-final stage for the fifth year running.
The Czechs avenged their defeat to the Americans at the same stage of the 2012 Olympic Games, coming from behind to take full advantage of an extra man on a power play after U.S. captain Justin Abdelkader was ejected for charging. (Reporting by Dimitriy Rogovitskiy, editing by Ken Ferris)