Day 5 of the Women’s U18 Hockey Championships has come to an end and as predicted USA and Canada will meet in the gold medal game Friday night.
The Americans had little trouble in eliminating Sweden 4-0 in the days first semi-final match.
Taylor Heise scored her second of the tournament to close out the scoring for the Americans in the 3rd for a 4-0 final.
“Now that we’re there, we’re excited, and we want to win the gold,” Heising said after the game.
The final shot total heavily favored the US 43-9.
Goaltender Ellen Jonsson was certainly a bright spot for team Sweden. She kept her team in the game giving the Swedes a fair chance through 2 periods.
Sweden will play Russia in the Bronze medal game also to be played on Friday.
Canada dominated Russia by a similar 4-0 score.
Russia put up very little resistance and were outshot 43-12 by a hungry Canadian team.
Despite out shooting the Russian girls 12-1, Team Canada only held a 1-0 lead after one thanks to Ashton Bell’s second goal of the tournament.
A similar dominant second period once again only saw Canada add one to their lead after Ryleigh Houston’s powerplay tally.
Leading 2-0 heading into the third it was only a matter of time before Russia’s defense collapsed. Ashton Bell and Kayla Friesen scored 25 second apart early in the third to put the game away.
Team Russia will look to repeat last years Bronze medal performance again Sweden at 4pm EST tomorrow at the Meridian Center.
Gold medal rematch set.
As most expected, USA and Canada will faceoff again in the gold medal match.
I mentioned it in previous articles but last year both teams appeared to be on even ground heading into the final game. Mondays 4-1 victory by the US certainly showed quite a gap between the two countries this year.
Canada appeared much more confident in their semi-final against Russia today so could we be in for a much better USA-Canada showdown tomorrow? It would be great for the game if we got drama similar to last years tournament in Buffalo. For that to happen, the Canadians will need to be able to match or at least neutralize the Americans superior speed. Hockey is a game of bounces sometimes and if Canada are able to weather an early storm by Team USA, it could be a tight one til the end.
Switzerland defeats France to stay at the top level.
The 2-0 loss will see France relegated for next years tournament. Switzerland by virtue of the win will stay in the top level.
As for the country that will replace France in 2017, Japan defeated Slovakia 4-1 in the Division 1 tournament that is being played in Hungary. Japan will make its way back after being relegated at last years tournament in Buffalo.
(Photo by Francois Laplante/HHOF-IIHF Images)