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Women's World Championship Roundup: Blowouts Highlight Action on Day 5

USA, Finland and Czechia pulled off dominant victories during Monday's women's World Championship action, while Sweden edged out Hungary in the shootout on the penultimate day of round-robin play.
Women's World Championship (WWC)

There were no upsets to be found on Day 5 of the 2022 women’s World Championship with Finland and USA winning in Group A, while Czechia and Sweden snagged wins in Group B. 

Here is a look at the four games on Monday:

Finland Earns First Win Against Japan

Finland picked up their first win of the tournament, while Japan had their best offensive output in a 9-3 decision at the 2022 women’s World Championship.

While many expected a lopsided contest from the start, Japan was able to stay close in the first period. Finland, however, scored first as Kiira Yrjanen picked up the puck in the cycle, drove to the front of the net from below the goal line and gifted Sofianna Sundelin with a short pass in tight where she found the net. 

Just over three minutes later, Japan fought back with Akane Shiga taking an astute cross-crease pass from Makoto Ito before tapping it home. The back and forth continued as Susanna Tapani, who missed Finland’s game against USA, carried the puck through multiple Japanese defenders before deking and outwaiting Miyuu Masuhara to give Finland a 2-1 lead.

Only 1:34 into the second, Viivi Vainikka created a net front presence and tipped home a point shot to make it 3-1. Later in the frame, Elisa Holopainen took a breakout pass in her own zone, gained speed through the neutral zone and split the Japanese defense down the middle before beating Masuhara high for Finland’s fourth goal of the game. 

Akane Shiga got her second of the contest off the rush at 31:01 shooting low off the far side pad before collecting her own rebound to score. Finland was not done however, with Viivi Vainikka tallying her second of the game, and Petra Nieminen adding one on a breakaway late in the period to give the Finns a 6-2 lead.

In the third period, defender Nelli Laitinen took a turnover in the neutral zone and eventually fired a shot off the bar and in to increase Finland’s lead, which grew again only 1:39 later when Elia Holopainen scored her second of the game. Sini Karjalainen rounded out Finland’s scoring making it 9-2, before Aoi Shiga picked up the final goal for Japan with less than two minutes remaining to finish the game 9-3.

USA Shuts Out Switzerland, Remains Perfect

Team USA continued their dominance in the tournament shutting out Switzerland 9-0 to remain undefeated. 

USA will vie for first overall in Group A tomorrow against Canada.

At 5:48 of the first, Abby Roque finished what looked like a set play off the faceoff burying a feed in into the slot from Lee Stecklein behind the net. Taylor Heise who was one of the tournament’s leading scorers despite not having a goal changed that notching her first, and second goal of the tournament, while fellow youngster Hannah Bilka also scored to round out scoring in the first.

In the second period, American legend Hilary Knight set up in the slot on the powerplay and finished the puck movement between Bilka and Alex Carpenter with a one-timer to score her first of the tournament. Knight would score another driving home a lose puck in the crease at 46:15 in the third period. 

The third saw an onslaught of American goals from Grace Zumwinkle, Savannah Harmon, and Cayla Barnes to hand the USA a one-sided 9-0 win. American goaltender Maddie Rooney faced only four shots in a shutout victory.

Czechia Blanks Germany

Czechia continued their Group B excellence shutting out Germany 6-0 to remain undefeated.

Czechia got on the board on the powerplay at 12:02 of the first period as they moved the puck around the perimeter before 16-year-old Adela Sapovalivova took the puck on the goal line and went top shelf short side over Germany’s Sandra Abstreiter. Before the frame was over, Natalie Mlynkova continued her strong tournament to give Czechia a 2-0 lead.

In the second period, Czechian captain Alena Mills walked off the right sideboard and to the net before banking a shot off a German defender and through Abstreiter to make it 3-0. Less than three minutes later Mills picked up an assist on Czecia’s fourth goal of the game scored by Noemi Neubauerova. Before the period ended, Agata Sarnovska made it 5-0 for Czechia.

Klara Hymlarova scored 1:06 into the third period to extend Czechia’s lead and round out the scoring in Czechia’s 6-0 win. Klara Peslarova and Blanka Skodova split the shutout for Czechia combining for nine saves.

Sweden Wins in the Shootout

In a back and forth contest that saw Sweden and Hungary exchange goals, Sweden required shootout heroics for the second time in the tournament to earn a 3-2 win.

Young defender Mira Jungaker scored her first goal at 4:07 after rushing the puck from the neutral zone. Later in the frame, Hungary’s Emma Kreisz walked out from the corner and slipped a shot five-hole on Ida Boman to tie the game 1-1.

In the second, Linnea Johansson tipped home a point shot by Maja Nylen-Persson for the lone goal of the period sending Sweden to the third with a 2-1 lead. Hungary’s Franciska Kiss-Simon knotted things at 2-2 at 48:19 jumping on a loose puck that bounced off multiple players before finding her stick at the left goal-mouth in the third.

The game needed a shootout to decide a winner. In the shootout, Ida Boman turned away eight Hungarian shooters before Hanna Olsson played hero, lifting a shot over Nemeth for the winner.

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Three Stars

1. Hannah Bilka and Taylor Heise (USA): The duo of young NCAA stars share the first star honors after combining for five points in the USA’s 9-0 win over Switzerland. Heise who had yet to score poured in a pair for the USA in the first period showing off her shot, which to this point had been overshadowed by her playmaking skills. Bilka found chemistry with veteran Hilary Knight in this game assisting on both of Knight’s goals, and scoring her own on a redirection in the first to give the USA a commanding lead. The youngsters will lead the American’s into the next generation.

2. Akane Shiga, LW (JAP): Throughout the tournament, Akane Shiga has played with speed, and was the most consistent threat for Team Japan. Shiga finally saw that pay dividends against Finland scoring on a back door play in the first period to make the score 1-1, and scoring again in the second, this time on a solo effort taking her own rebound on the rush to make it 4-2. Shiga, who is only 21, added an assist on Japan’s final goal and will be counted on as a central figure for Japan in the quarterfinal.

3. Mira Jungaker, D (SWE): The young defender has been a stalwart for Sweden not only playing in key defensive moments, but also leading the charge offensively at times. Jungaker has stepped up on the power play and in transition to keep the puck moving forward for Sweden. 

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